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When you’ve gained some extra pounds, use this belly-targeting workout to get rid of that spare tire!

 

First of all, what is a muffin top? It’s that annoying flap that spills out over the waistband, also called love handles. For many people, especially for women, the body retains a large portion of excess fat around the stomach area. Unfortunately doing hundreds of crunches won’t work, because the muffin top is mainly fat. Some people still believe they can eliminate fat in one area by working it with a particular exercise over and over again, also called “spot reducing“. Do not be fooled by this theory! Spot reducing ist - unfortunately - not possible. To lose a muffin top, you need to focus on full-body weight loss and therefore lower your overall body fat. Exercises focusing on your abdomen do help you to tone that area, however you need to work all areas and different muscles for that overall toned stomach. If it’s hiding behind a layer of fat though, it doesn’t matter how much you work your abs!
The fastest way to lose excess fat is to combine an all-over strength workout with intense cardio routines and you will get toned in no time.

 

Cardio + HIIT Training:

Cardio and HIIT training are crucial if you want to lose your muffin top! High-intensity interval training (HIIT) workouts have shown to be the most effective at reducing belly fat. It gets your heart pumping, forcing your heart and lungs to work harder and thus burn more calories. The more calories your body burns, the more fat should melt off your body. The important thing is to choose something you like which will keep you motivated. Running, spinning, Zumba, swimming, boxing, elliptical training and even hiking are all very effective workouts. Do it as often as you like, but at least three times a week for 30-40 minutes. Plus, try to incorporate more steps into your everyday life – walk or bike to work, take the stairs instead of the elevator, go shopping by foot etc. Small changes will get you a long way already!

 

Strength Training:

Ab exercises alone will not help you get rid of your stomach fat, but they will give it a tighter, more toned appearance as you lose weight. Target your lower abs, upper abs, obliques and lower back to work the entire waistline. Also perform exercises that target other muscle parts. By adding muscle to your body, you will increase your resting metabolic rate and burn more calories while at rest. This will cause you to shed weight around your middle at a faster pace. Do the following workout routine three times a week.

 

Workout Plan:

Monday: Strength Training
Tuesday: High Intensity Cardio Training
Wednesday: Rest
Thursday: Strength Training
Friday: Cardio Training + Strength Training
Saturday: Rest
Sunday: High Intensity Cardio Training

 

Hyperextensions:

Starting position: Use a hyperextension bench. Adapt the machine to your measures (bending your upper body should be possible without any interruption at your waist) and lie on it and cross your arms in front of your chest. (Touch your shoulders) Keep your back as straight as possible during the whole motion.
–    Start bending your torso over the pad while inhaling.
–    Lift yourself up by contracting the lower back to your starting position. Exhale during this motion.
–    Repeat this process as often as it is mentioned on your workout routine!

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Single Leg Glute Bridge:

Starting position: Lie on your back on the floor or on an exercise mat with your feet flat on the ground and your knees bent. Place your feet hip-width apart with the toes facing away from you. Raise one leg off the ground and fully extend it.
–    Now perform the movement by extending your hip upward and raising your glutes off the ground. (Try to hold this position for some seconds and be sure to extend as far as you can.)
–    Repeat this process as often as mentioned on your home workout routine.

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Standing Cable Wood Chop:

Starting position: Attach a standard handle on a high pulley. Stand with your side to the machine and step as far away as you need to extend your arms. (grab the handle with both hands)
–    Now pull the handle down to your front knee while rotating your upper body.
–    Repeat this process as often as it is mentioned on your workout routine!

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Cross-Body Crunch:

Starting position: Lie on your back on the floor or on an exercise mat with your hands to the side of your head and your knees bent.
–    Raise your upper body by contracting your abdominals and bring your elbow to the opposing sides’ knee.
–    Return slowly to the starting position.
–    Repeat the motion with the other elbow.
–    Return slowly to the starting position.
–    Repeat this process as often as mentioned on your workout routine.

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Crunch on Exercise Ball:

Starting position: Lie down on your back while resting your feet on an exercise ball and bend your knees 90 degrees. Put your hands behind your head (loosely).
–    Now roll your shoulder off the floor and try to push your lower back on the floor to isolate the abdominals. Keep contracting the abdominals until you have reached the highest point. Exhale during this motion.
–    After that begin to bring your shoulders back to the starting position. (Stay under control, do not use any momentum.)
–    Repeat this process as often as mentioned on your workout routine!

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Oblique Crunch on Exercise Ball:

Starting position: Get an exercises ball and lie with your back flat on the ball. Put your hands behind your head. (TIP: You can also put your hands in front, this may you help you to hold your balance)
–    Now lift your left shoulder to the right and try to push your lower back on the ball to isolate the abdominals. Keep contracting the abdominals until you have reached the highest point. Exhale during this motion.
–    Repeat this motion now for the opposite side and just turn your elbows slightly to your obliques.
–    Keep your chin high, that way you are not straining your neck.
–    Repeat until you feel your obliques working.

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Crunch – Legs on Bench:

Starting position: Lie down on your back while resting your feet on a bench and bend your knees in a 90 degree angle. Put your hands behind your head (loosely) and place your feet on the floor.
–    Now roll your shoulder off the floor and try to push your lower back on the floor to isolate the abdominals. Keep contracting the abdominals until you have reached the highest point you can get. Exhale during this motion.

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Exercise Ball Pull-In:

Starting position: Put an exercise ball close to your feet and get in a pushup position. Place your lower shins on the top of the ball and keep your arms and legs extended.
–    Keep your upper body and your arms stationary and pull your knees to your chest and exhale during this motion.
–    After that start extending your legs back to the starting position.
–    Repeat this process as often as mentioned on your workout routine!

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Side Bridge:

Starting position: Lie on your side and lift your hip up while you are supporting your body with your foot and your forearm.
–    Hold this position as long as mentioned on your workout routine!

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Source: instagram/ kaliburns