I get people coming up to me all the time asking how to get rid of their love handles, spare tires, pot bellies, little Buddhas, guts, sheds, or you name it. They ask me, “hey Pete, what exercises do you recommend to get rid of this?” I am then blessed with watching them grab their stomachs and shake them, or squeeze the fat on their love handles and wave it at me. How nice!
The answer might be obvious if they looked like the aweseomly hairy dude in the image above, however, what about those who are in decent shape but have an area they really want to target such as the stomach.
Note: This post will be applicable to the butt and thighs problem other body-shaped folks have, although I get less of people grabbing their butts and shaking them at me
If you do not understand Functional Fitness and what that means as opposed to other forms of exercise, then click here. An aspect of Functional Fitness involving this question of reducing fat in the stomach is the idea of targeting the stomach. If you already subscribe to a Functional Fitness style of exercise, you would then realize we essentially never target an area. Our programs are basically total-body workouts that force many muscle groups to work together.
We do have some “ab” type exercises in our program, but I am not the guy to turn to for a list of ab exercises to target your fat tire. Join a “Butt and Gut” program then.
If you ask me what to do, my answer may not be what you want to hear. Leave this post now if you can’t handle the truth! Ok, I realize that was a bad quote from a really old movie now, and what I have to say isn’t the “truth” but merely my beliefs on this question. But cheesy humor comes with my advice.
I belief that a person should continue to work the entire body, but make sure you do more of the workouts which incorporate HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training). This will help you burn calories and fat. You can always add in some running, biking, or other activities during your week to help with calorie and fat loss. Then the final piece is your diet. You need to make sure you improve your diet to small degrees as you move forward. I say small degrees, because any more drastic of a diet change will most likely fail in the long run.
The point here, is that I would not give you exercises to do. I would say you need to workout consistently, get good rest, improve your diet, and be patient. Seriously, your excess fat has to go somewhere. For the majority of people it will be your stomach/love handles or your butt/thighs. It is not about “targeting” those areas, but about losing the excess fat. A Functional Fitness program should already “target” those areas in the sense that your workouts “target” your entire body. But, there is not a quick fix of do 1000 reps of these and 500 reps of those. Sorry.
Seriously, you see those commercials for ab-busting equipment with the ripped models. Guess what, they are ripped because they eat healthy and work out consistently. It is not like their abs are wash board and their backs and shoulders are flabby. They simply are in great shape with little to no excess fat. There is no magic machine that can get that for you in “just a few minutes a couple times a week.”
So you are left with a choice. How much of a love handle can you live with? If you are eatin right, sleeping right, working out 4 times a week for 30-50 minutes with intense Functional Fitness workouts and you are not overweight….well either deal with it and embrace how awesome you are, or set a new goal and ramp up the workouts and healthier meals!