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Simple habits for a flatter tummy


PHOTO: Fit2Win Wellness

One of the top body changes that people covet is a flat stomach. You can’t deny the fact that anyone with a firm, ripped stomach gains instant respect from others, which is not an easy goal to achieve. Far too often, I have clients pointing out that they aren’t seeing results, without realizing that you need to make changes beyond the gym.

Fortunately, if you have the right strategies in place it’s definitely a goal that you can take head-on. Let me walk you through the top things that you should be doing in order to finally flatten that tummy.

Eat lean protein post-workout
A good dose of lean protein after your workout session is vital to repair broken down muscle tissues. With greater repair levels, you’ll experience greater overall muscle growth, which means a faster metabolic rate. And the faster your metabolic rate is moving along, the more total body fat you will burn up daily, helping uncover your abs in the process.

Do core moves on the decline
When going about your core workouts to develop stronger abs, don’t underestimate the power of doing them on a decline. Simply shifting the body into this position gives them greater total resistance to work against since you’ll have to fight the forces of gravity. Try the decline weighted twisting sit-up for the ultimate move that hits the obliques as well.


Destabilize your body
On the workout side of things, the more you can destabilise yourself, the more you’ll target muscle fibers deep within the core. Doing more of your basic strength and core exercises on an exercise ball, you’ll achieve this effect perfectly.

Eliminate refined foods
Next, one of the most important steps to take if you want to get chiseled abs is to eliminate all the refined foods that you’re consuming in your diet plan. Refined foods will break down rapidly in the body, which causes your blood glucose to increase and this spikes insulin right along with it. With high levels of insulin constantly in your system, you’re in primary fat storage mode, so expect to see fat being packed on around your middle. Once the glucose is cleared from the blood, you’ll then suffer a blood glucose crash, which causes intense food cravings to set in. It’s an ongoing cycle that will lead to excessive, quick fat gain.

Crank up the speed
To burn fat at an accelerated rate for hours after your workout, start adding interval training to the mix. You’ll stroke your fat burning engine for 48 hours post-workout, making this an excellent way to increase your fat loss. Remember that total fat loss comes down to total calories expended versus consumed, so adding intervals will greatly help the expended side of the equation.

Reduce stress
Combating stress will do more than just help you feel better on a day-to-day basis. When you’re highly stressed out, you’re going to be releasing far more cortisol than normal, which is a hormone that will only encourage fat accumulation in the midsection. Figure out what technique works best for you to bust through stress and then make sure that you use it daily.

Perform full-body workouts
Rather than doing a split body workout like many men do, make the switch over to a full-body workout. Full-body workouts stimulate far more muscle fibers in total, which means a greater calorie burn during both the workout and well after it’s finished. For overall fat loss, full-body workouts can’t be beat. Plus, they allow more time off from your training to get in your interval cardio workouts.

Get more sleep
Getting sufficient sleep is the next vital element to have in place if you want to get abs in a hurry. If you aren’t sleeping enough at night, you’ll experience a slower metabolic rate, a higher cortisol release and less energy to complete your workout the very next day. When you’re well rested, you’ll also experience fewer food cravings, making it easier to choose wise nutrition options.

Stay hydrated
When you’re slightly dehydrated, your body holds on to more water. This excess water weight can give you a bloated or puffy look, especially in your midsection. Slight dehydration can also increase your cravings and appetite because your brain may misinterpret thirst for hunger. So drink up to slim down! Aim for 64 ounces (8 cups) of water daily.

Cut back on beer
If beer is your beverage of choice, you may want to consider changing that. Beer is higher in carbs than other options, which will get converted to body fat in a hurry. Combine this with the alcohol content, which already slows down fat loss, and you have yourself a prime fat-gain situation. Opt for liquor-based drinks with calorie-free mixers like water or slimline tonic instead.

So, when you’re looking in the mirror and thinking that it’s time you put some effort in focusing on your core development, get these points in place to help take your progress up a notch.

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