No matter whether you’re a gym newbie or workout pro, getting flat abs fast is attainable with the right exercise regime and nutrition. Just follow these tried and tested expert tips to banish your belly flab fast.
TIP ONE: REDUCE EXCESS BODY MASS
Studies have shown that spot fat reduction, that is, losing weight from one particular part of your body, doesn’t work. To lose belly fat you need to burn fat from your whole body, not just work your abs region, Orangetheory Fitness Balmain Head Coach Axel Jacquety said.
“Reduce body fat by doing resistance and cardio exercises every workout,” he said. “Weight lifting, XRT and exercises like treadmill, bike or strider, can be very effective at reducing body fat percentage.”
For a big calorie burn, try rowing. “Rowing works your arms and core but also generates a lot of force through your glutes and quadriceps muscles, so you burn calories quickly,” Jacquety added.
TIP TWO: DEBLOAT WITH PROBIOTICS
Research has shown that eating foods rich in probiotics actually help you lose abdominal fat. In a study published in the British Journal of Nutrition, participants who ate foods containing the bacteria Lactobacillus gasseri for 12 weeks had an 8.5 per cent reduction in belly fat.
The takeaway? Include more natural yoghurt and fermented foods like sauerkraut, kimchi, kombucha and kefir in your diet.
TIP THREE: STRENGTHEN YOUR CORE
Targeting your core abdominal muscles can accentuate those muscles in your physique, according to Jacquety.
“By strengthening your obliques and abdominal muscles, you will see definition like a six-pack and lose those love handles,” he said.
Jacquety suggested avoiding crunches and sit-ups that put pressure on your thoracic vertebrae and replace them with TRX and ab-dolly exercises. “Unbalancing exercises like knee tucks, lunges on TRX and ab-dolly exercises help strengthen joints but also provide core stability.”
TIP FOUR: EAT MORE PROTEIN
Swapping out refined carbohydrates for good sources of protein like eggs, nuts, legumes, fish, seafood and whole grains is one of the best ways to lose weight. What’s more, research shows eating more protein can also reduce your risk of gaining belly fat over time.
“Eating foods high in protein in conjunction with training can also help your body repair and build lean muscle mass which means you burn more calories, even at rest,” Jacquety added.
TIP FIVE: REDUCE SUGARY DRINKS AND ALCOHOL
Alcohol and sugar-sweetened drinks like soft drinks are often high in calories that can prevent the body fat reduction required to get a flat tummy, Jacquety said.
“If you compare calorie consumption from these drinks to calories burnt in the gym you will see how much damage they’re doing.”
Jacquety’s advice? Simply drink more water. “Water has zero calories and is essential to hydrate the body and maintain workout intensity,” he said.
Jacquety also outlined what a weekly plan for flat abs should look like:
Food (each day): Reduce refined carbohydrates and foods high in salt, sugar and saturated fats. Increase lean proteins and whole foods containing fibre. Eat foods containing probiotics 2 times a day.
|Mon||Rowing (10-15 mins, high intensity)
Mountain Climber (3 sets, 30-45 secs)
V-sit with medicine ball rotation (3 sets, side to side, 30-45 secs)
Medicine ball slam (5-10 mins)
Treadmill run (15-20 mins)
For an advanced workout, add:
XRT Knee tucks or lunges (3 sets, 15-20 reps)
Ab-dolly rollout (3 sets, 15 reps)
|Wed||Treadmill running (15-20 mins low to moderate intensity)
Dumbbell plank row (3 sets, 30 reps)
Biometric squats (3 sets of continuous 30-45 secs duration)
Lateral plank with leg lift (3 sets, 15 reps each side)
Dumbbell dead bug single leg extension (2 sets, 30 reps)
Bike (15-20 mins)
|Fri||Repeat Mon routine|
|Sun||Repeat Wed routine|