Most people believe endlessly pounding miles on the treadmill is the only way to get rid of that stubborn body fat...……well this simply isn't the case.
Below are 10 handy tips that may surprise you on the best ways to actually burn that unwanted body at and keep it off.
Try strength training
Strength training is by far one of the most effective ways to burn body fat, by increasing muscle mass you increase your metabolic rate meaning you burn fat faster.
One study showed that 12 weeks of strength training paired with aerobic exercise was far more effective at burning body fat than aerobic exercise alone.
Increasing the bodies muscle mass can lead to a greater calorie burn at rest, this can be as much as 7% after only 10 weeks of strength training.
Eat more protein
Increasing protein in the diet will help sustain muscle mass and help increase metabolism.
Protein can also help you feel fuller for longer meaning you are less likely to snack between meals.
I certainly know this is one of my favorite hobbies and for good reason. Your body grows and changes when we sleep therefore getting adequate sleep aids the bodies recovery after workouts. Lack of sleep has been shown to mess with hunger hormones increasing appetite meaning you are more likely to reach for those biscuits when you're tired!
Try to get to bed at a similar time each evening to give you the best chance of getting your body into a healthy sleeping pattern. Avoid using smartphones in bed and no TV! This will only stimulate your brain making it harder to sleep.
Swapping sugary drinks for squash or water will massively increase fat loss. The body doesn't need high sugar energy drinks to fuel itself. That’s what carbohydrates and fat are for. Sugar is only going to be stored as fat if its not being used for energy, so unless you are likely to be doing a 10k run after consuming one I would pretty much steer clear of them all together. With little nutritional value the most these drinks will be doing if piling on the pounds and keeping your dentist in business!
Try swapping normal tea for green tea, it’s a proven drink that will increase metabolism helping you burn fat faster.
Eat more fat
Now this may seem counter intuitive but increasing the level of healthy fats can help abolish the bad fats that cling to the organs around the stomach. Studies have shown a diet rich in good fats such as olive oil, nuts and avocados can help reduce body fat.
Trans fats are bad and will lead to weight gain if not moderated. A good way to help is try swapping the bad trans fats for good healthy fats.
Bear in mind healthy fats are still high in calories so eat them in moderation!
Cut down on refined carbs
Refined carbs such as white bread tend to have little nutritional value and have a high glycemic index which will result in spikes and crashes in blood sugar levels. This can lead to hunger and normally the type of hunger that can only be suppressed by something sweet!
Replacing refined carbs with healthier alternatives such as whole wheat, quinoa and oats will help reduce that stubborn belly fat.
Up the cardio
If you aren’t already, you should be doing some form of cardio exercise. As well as strength training cardio is an effective way to burn fat. If you are only strength training and neglecting cardio……you will be losing body fat but not as fast as if you combine both.
It doesn’t necessarily have to be HIIT (high intensity interval training) either. Simply walking will suffice. Studies have shown LISS (low intensity steady state) training is just as effective at burning fat.
Drink more water
Water is a such a simple trick everyone can do to help reduce body fat. It is 100% calorie-free, helps increase metabolism and may even suppress your appetite if consumed before meals. The benefits are even greater when you replace sugary beverages with water helping you cut back on sugars and calories.
The most effective and simplest form of cutting weight and body fat is with a calorie deficit. This basically means consuming less calories that you burn in a day. It’s a simple yet effective method and is proven to work.
Burning more calories than you consume means your body will be using up its energy sources as fuel. With a calorie deficit combined with strength and aerobic exercise the body begins to burn fat as a fuel source. Bye bye belly fat!
Mix it up
Sticking to the same workout routine week in week out will only get you so far. The trick is to shock the body into change. Try adding drop sets, pyramids, light endurance training and heavy strength training to your workout.
Our bodies have a fantastic way of adapting to the stress that you put on it, if you are putting the same stress on it each week it will stop progressing when it knows it can handle that level of stress. So you must keep changing your workouts to keep your body guessing.