Fat loss requires greater movement. Some workouts burn more calories and fat than others, but none specifically target belly fat.
Julia Schaefer, personal trainer and proprietor of Aspire Athletics in Seattle, Washington, prioritizes compound strength exercises like squats and deadlifts. “Compound movements use the whole body, maximizing calorie burn.” Compound strength exercises help you get a full-body workout in less time and burn more fat since they train more muscle groups.
Workouts should contain more than compound movements. Evie Ray, master trainer and proprietor of JAKTMuscle Training Facility in Colorado Springs, stresses aerobic workouts in addition to weightlifting. She advises higher-intensity or interval aerobics to lose fat without losing muscle.
High-intensity interval training (HIIT) boosts metabolism more than steady-state exercise, so you burn more calories afterward. "Afterburn" describes this. Interval training is shorter than steady-state cardio and includes rest and recuperation, which preserves muscle mass.
Fad diets promise miraculous fat loss. However, they're fads. Schaefer advises against following nutrition trends to achieve health and fitness goals. “Reinventing the wheel is pointless.” Avoid complex diets like Keto or intermittent fasting.
“Keep your protein intake high,” Rays advises for fat loss. Most studies recommend 1 gram of protein per pound of body weight daily. Choose fish, egg whites, white meat poultry, and tofu for lean protein. Protein smoothies can help you meet your protein objectives when you don't have time to cook or access to complete foods.
Diet and exercise are commonly thought to determine health. Sleep and stress are also crucial for weight loss.
Insufficient sleep is linked to obesity, BMI, and bad diet. Sleep deprivation impairs metabolism-regulating hormones. Grogginess lowers self-control, making good meal choices harder. Studies reveal that sleep deprivation increases people prefer higher-calorie, sugary, and fatty foods. Thus, insufficient sleep sabotages fat reduction.
Many think motivation and willpower are enough to achieve their goals. Motivation alone is ineffective. “Motivation will come and go, but the habits you put time and energy into creating will keep you chugging forward,” Schaefer says.
Best advice? “Motivate yourself with small goals. Consistency matters. Habits matter.” Schaefer suggests setting strength goals like lifting five pounds more per week and celebrating when you reach them, even if your main aim is to lose belly fat. Celebrate additional milestones like increased energy, better sleep, and less cravings.