By November 18, 2011

The Best Exercises to Burn Belly Fat

First the good news. Belly fat is the first thing to go when you lose weight through exercise. Now the bad news. Spot exercises like sit-ups and crunches that are associated with a flat stomach won’t work if abdominal muscles are surrounded by blubber. These exercises are great for toning muscles, but they won’t get at those pinchable love handles or the belly fat hidden deep inside the abdominal cavities.

So if sit-ups won’t help, what are the best exercises to burn and lose belly fat fast?

Medical experts agree that the best way to lose belly fat fast is through moderate and consistent aerobic exercise. Any physical activity that raises the heart rate and makes you sweat for at least 30 minutes per day will do the job. And nothing ticks all these boxes like walking – with the added bonus that it’s free! Walking also helps with stress. It stimulates feel-good chemicals and helps you sleep better.

If you have a lot of belly fat to lose and haven’t exercised for years, it’s recommended to start out by walking for just 10 minutes at a time. Build up by taking three 10-minute walks each day, gradually increasing until you are used to walking for 30 minutes. You can then increase your speed until you can walk at a brisk pace. If it’s difficult to breathe, you’re pushing yourself too hard. If you’re not sweating, you’re not pushing hard enough.

Once you are used to regular brisk 30-minute walks, you can add jumping or skipping moves. This is a great way to ramp up the intensity – and your results. You’ll burn twice as many calories, and significantly more belly fat.

 Adding strength-training sessions a few times a week will build muscle and burn more calories, reducing your belly fat even more. You can even introduce interval resistance training into your walks for maximum results. This type of workout zaps belly fat even faster than regular aerobic exercise. Try this example routine:

  1. Walk for 10 minutes, building to a brisk pace.
  2. Skip for 30 seconds, then walk at a moderate pace for one minute. Do this for five minutes.
  3. Stop and do squats for one minute, then walk at a moderate pace for one minute. Do this for five minutes.
  4. Walk at a moderate pace for 10 minutes, gradually cooling down.

If you’re serious about losing your love handles, increase your exercise sessions to 45 minutes and try walking uphill.

You’ll want to track your progress and the best way to do this is by measuring your waist. Record your results once a week. It’s important to note that women with a waist measurement of more than 35 inches and men with a waist measurement of more than 40 inches are considered to have dangerous levels of belly fat and are at risk of serious health problems.

Committing to 30 minutes of brisk walking five to six days a week can blast that belly fat. And once you’ve lost your bulge, you can look forward to toning your tummy with sit-ups and crunches!