Best Abs Workout For Weight Loss

The AB workout for weight loss is a simple and straightforward way to burn calories and build muscle. The abs are a group of muscles that help keep the trunk stable, but it is important not to neglect them when trying to lose weight.

The AB workout for weight loss is designed to target this area, while also helping you tone up your entire body. It will also improve your posture, making it easier for you to move around without becoming tired or sore.

This workout is perfect if you have limited time or space in which to exercise. You can do it at home without any equipment or even outside if the weather is nice enough!

Right here on Buy and Slay, you are privy to a litany of relevant information on workouts to lose belly fat at home, best exercises to lose belly fat female, do ab exercises burn belly fat, and so much more. Take out time to visit our catalog for more information on similar topics.

Best Abs Workout For Weight Loss

Defined abdominal muscles or “abs” have become a symbol of fitness and health. For this reason, the internet is full of information about how you can achieve a six pack. Many of these recommendations involve exercises and devices that target the ab muscles. These methods supposedly stimulate your abs to burn belly fat. However, they’re not as effective as some of us may think.

What Are Abdominal Muscles (Abs)?

Abdominal muscles help stabilize your core.

They also assist your breathing, allow movement, protect your internal organs and are in charge of postural support and balance.

There are four main abdominal muscles:

  • Rectus abdominis.
  • Transverse abdominis.
  • External oblique.
  • Internal oblique.

It is important to maintain strength in all these muscles.

Strong abdominal muscles can help improve posture and balance. They can also help reduce back pain and increase flexibility.

BOTTOM LINE:

Abdominal muscles allow movement and provide stability, support and balance. Strong abs can prevent back pain and other problems.

There Are Two Types of Abdominal Fat

Excess abdominal fat, or belly fat, is associated with a higher risk of insulin resistance, type 2 diabetes and heart disease.

Abdominal obesity is also one of the main causes of metabolic syndrome.

However, not all abdominal fat is created equal. There are two types — subcutaneous fat and visceral fat.

Subcutaneous Fat

This is the type of fat you can pinch. It’s located under the skin, between your skin and muscles.

Subcutaneous fat is not directly related to metabolic risk. In moderate amounts, it will not dramatically increase your risk of disease.

Visceral Fat

This type of fat is located in the abdominal cavity around your internal organs.

It’s linked to metabolic syndrome and health conditions such as type 2 diabetes and heart disease.

Visceral fat is hormonally active. It releases compounds that influence several disease-related processes in the human body.

BOTTOM LINE:

There are two types of abdominal fat — subcutaneous and visceral. Visceral fat releases hormones that have been linked to disease.

Having Strong, Muscular Abs is Not Enough

Exercising your abdominal muscles will strengthen them.

However, twisting, crunching and side bending will not make your abdominal muscles visible if they are covered by a thick layer of fat.

When present in large amounts, subcutaneous (under the skin) fat will prevent you from seeing your abdominal muscles.

In order to have defined abs or a six pack, you need to get rid of subcutaneous fat from your abdominal area.

BOTTOM LINE:

Exercising your abs will help them become strong and muscular. However, you won’t be able to see them if they’re covered by subcutaneous fat.

Do Ab Exercises Burn Belly Fat?

Many people do ab exercises because they want to lose belly fat.

However, the evidence suggests targeted ab exercises are not very effective.

Spot Reduction May Not Be Effective

The term “spot reduction” refers to the misconception that you can lose fat in one spot by exercising that part of your body. It’s true that spot-training exercises will make you “feel the burn” while muscles grow and strengthen. However, studies show they won’t help you get rid of belly fat.

One study followed 24 people who did ab exercises 5 days a week for 6 weeks. This training alone did not reduce subcutaneous belly fat.

Another study tested the effects of a 27-day sit-up program. It found that neither fat cell size nor subcutaneous belly fat thickness decreased.

This is not only true for the abdominal area. It applies to all areas of the body.

For instance, one study asked participants to complete 12 weeks of resistance training, exercising only their non-dominant arm.

They measured subcutaneous fat before and after the program and found that participants lost fat throughout their bodies, not just in their trained arms.

Several other studies have shown similar results.

However, Some Studies Disagree

Some studies seem to contradict the above results.

One study tested whether spot reduction decreased subcutaneous arm fat. It found that exercise in a specific area of the arm reduced the fat in that area.

Another study examined whether the location of the subcutaneous fat mattered. It compared subcutaneous fat beside working muscles to fat next to resting muscles.

Interestingly, no matter how intense the exercise, blood flow and fat breakdown were higher in subcutaneous fat that was close to active muscles.

Nevertheless, the methods or measurement techniques used in these studies could be the reason for the conflicted results.

BOTTOM LINE:

The evidence is mixed, but many studies have shown that training one area of your body will not help you burn fat in that area. Studies also show that ab exercises alone have no effect on subcutaneous belly fat.

The Best Exercises For Fat Loss

One reason why targeted fat loss does not work is because muscle cells cannot use the fat contained in fat cells directly.

Fat mass needs to be broken down before it can enter the bloodstream. This fat can come from anywhere in the body, and not just from the body part being exercised.

Additionally, doing sit-ups and crunches isn’t particularly effective for burning calories.

What Exercises Should You Do?

Regular, whole-body exercises will speed up your metabolism and burn calories and fat. Aerobic exercise (cardio) may also be effective at targeting visceral belly fat.

Intensity plays a role as well. Moderate or high-intensity exercise can reduce belly fat mass, compared to low-intensity aerobic exercise or strength training.

Additionally, you need to exercise often if you want to achieve significant results.

For example, do moderate-intensity cardio for 30 minutes, five days a week, or high-intensity cardio for 20 minutes, three days a week.

The muscle changes that take place in response to exercise also promote fat loss. In other words, the more muscle mass you build, the more fat you will burn.

Combining Multiple Types of Exercise May Be Effective

High-intensity intermittent exercise (HIIE) is another approach that has been shown to reduce body fat more efficiently than standard aerobic exercise.

HIIE is a type of interval training that combines short bouts of high-intensity exercise followed by slightly longer but less intense recovery periods.

Aspects of HIIE that make it effective include appetite suppression and greater fat burning during and after exercise.

Furthermore, combining resistance training and aerobic exercise been shown to be more effective than aerobic exercise alone.

Even if you don’t want to do HIIE or resistance training, studies have shown that just regular brisk walks can also effectively reduce belly fat and total body fat.

BOTTOM LINE:

Aerobic training and HIIE burn calories and speed up your metabolism. Combining aerobic exercise and resistance training seems to be particularly effective.

Changing Your Diet Is Key to Losing Body Fat

You may have heard the saying, “Abs are made in the kitchen, not the gym.” There is truth to this, as good nutrition is essential if you want to lose body fat.

For starters, reduce your intake of processed foods. These are commonly packed with sugar and high-fructose corn syrup.

Eating too much sugar can cause weight gain and increase your risk of metabolic diseases.o greater feelings of fullness that may translate to lower calorie intake.

A study of overweight and obese men showed that when protein made up 25% of their calorie intake, appetite control and feelings of fullness increased by 60%.

Moreover, a protein intake of around 25–30% of your daily calories may increase your metabolism by up to 100 calories per day.

Increasing your fiber intake is another good strategy for weight loss. Vegetables high in soluble fiber have been shown to help with weight loss. They may increase feelings of fullness and decrease calorie intake over time.

Portion control is another effective tool, as moderating your food intake has been shown to help cause weight loss.

When you consume whole foods, more fiber, more protein and control your portions, you are more likely to cut back on calories.

Achieving a long-term calorie deficit is crucial for losing weight and belly fat.

Studies show that people can lose belly fat through either moderate or vigorous-intensity aerobic exercise, as long as they maintain a caloric deficit.

BOTTOM LINE:

Good nutrition is important for losing belly fat. Eat fewer processed foods, watch your portions and eat more protein and fiber.

How to Lose Belly Fat Effectively

Evidence shows that you can’t lose belly fat by exercising your abs alone.

For total-body fat loss, use a combination of aerobic exercise and resistance training, such as lifting weights.

In addition, eat a healthy diet with plenty of protein, fiber and portion control — all of which are proven to help reduce body fat.

These methods will help you burn calories, speed up your metabolism and make you lose fat. This will ultimately cause belly fat loss and give you a flatter stomach.

9 Ab Exercises for a Flat Belly

We live in an age where rock-hard, six-pack abdominal muscles are the goal of many workout enthusiasts. We all want that washboard look, but which ab exercises actually work? There are two sets of muscles to target: the rectus abdominis muscles (the ones you engage during regular situps, that run from your sternum to your pelvis) and the transverse abdominis (the deepest ab muscles that wrap around the spine and help stabilize your core).

It’s important to remember that you can’t spot-reduce your abdominals. You have to lose the layer of fat over the abs for your abs to show through. Cardio workouts and a good diet are key to success.

Try these nine ab exercises as part of your overall fitness regimen.

Pilates

Pilates targets your core muscles, working your abdominals in repetitive exercises. For instance, “the 100” is a modified crunch that you hold for 100 counts. There are also machines, such as the reformer, that strengthen and stretch your deep stomach muscles.

Perhaps all the funky looking equipment intimidates you. Luckily many gyms now offer Pilates mat classes. Pilates is low-impact, so it’s a great choice if you’re looking for a gentle joint exercise that is a killer ab workout.

Plank poses

Plank poses are very effective at tightening your tummy, whether you do these types of exercises in a yoga class or as part of your gym workout. The classic plank pose involves lying down on your stomach, then raising all your body weight up on your toes and forearms or hands in a “plank” position. You then hold the pose for as long as you can. You can change it up by doing a side plank (put all your weight on one forearm or hand and the sides of your feet), or by doing back leg lifts while in the traditional plank pose.

Get in the ring

The sparring and jabbing you do while boxing engages both sets of ab muscles. Boxing is a solid option for overall fitness. Your midsection will transform when you focus on getting your form right. Many gyms offer boxing fitness classes, and your local boxing ring may have private coaches for one-on-one training.

Stability boards and balls

Both balls and boards offer a way to further engage both sets of ab muscles, while doing simple exercises such as pushups and squats. Proper form is paramount when using these exercise balls and balance boards. Most gyms offer classes, so take advantage of professional instruction if you can.

Get moving

You need to add fat-burning cardio into your routine to get your abs to show through. Pick an activity that interests and motivates you, such as running, walking, swimming, or spinning. Aim for either 150 minutes per week of moderate aerobic exercise or 75 minutes of vigorous aerobic exercise, per the CDCTrusted Source.

Bicycle crunches

The bicycle motion works both sets of ab muscles. This exercise can help carve out a toned midsection when done with proper form. Be careful not to strain your neck when doing it.

Lie down on a mat and place your hands behind your head, gently supporting your head with your fingers without pulling. Bring your knee up to your chest, while rotating your upper body to meet your knee with the elbow of your opposite arm (see photo). The opposite leg will go straight out. Switch to the opposite side, “cycling” the legs. Do one to three sets of 12 to 16 repetitions each.

Captain’s chair

The traditional crunch is now largely considered an ineffective ab exercise and a potential cause of back pain. However, the pullup motion done in a “captain’s chair” (an elevated pullup chair) is still considered a highly effective way to tone your midsection.

This tried and true exercise involves hanging from a pullup chair and raising your legs in front of you, bending at the hips. Always be sure to use proper form. Lower your shoulders and lengthen your neck as your starting position.

Torso twist

This ab exercise is done standing up. Stand with your feet hip-distance apart and your hands on your hips. Twist your upper body to the right side, then go back to center. Repeat on the left side, then go back to center. Work up to three sets of 15 reps.

One way to add more to this exercise is to grab some small hand weights and place your arms out to the side while doing the twists.

Lunges

You may not think of lunges as targeting your abs, but these exercises are very effective all-over body toners, especially for your “core” muscles. Stand with your feet hip-width apart, then step forward into a lunge position. Make sure to keep your back knee about 3 inches off the ground. You can add small dumbbells for a little more intensity.

All-over body health

Remember that it’s not all about spot-training when it comes to your abs. Keep your calories in check and work frequent cardio workouts into your routine. Keep your whole body in mind as you work toward an enviable midsection.

Workouts To Lose Belly Fat At Home

Whether you want a flat stomach for its aesthetic appeal or indicator of strength, you can be sure that it won’t happen without a certain amount of discipline and dedication.

Luckily, there are lots of exercises you can do to burn fat, build muscle, and define your abs. If the endless lists of stomach exercises leave you unsure of which to choose, we’ve got you covered.

Read on to learn a few key exercises you can do on your own as well as other tips to follow that will increase your odds of achieving a flat stomach.

Do these exercises every other day so that your muscles have a chance to recover. On alternate days, focus on other types of exercise. Be careful if you have (or develop) pain in your neck, shoulders, or back.

Toe reaches

This exercise is perfect for beginners who want to build up a strong core.

  • Lie on your back with your feet raised and your legs at a 90-degree angle.
  • Engage your lower abdominals as you lift your upper body off the mat.
  • Reach your hands toward your toes, pausing for 1–2 seconds at the top.
  • Slowly lower back down.
  • Do 1–3 sets of 12–18 repetitions.

Side planks 

For added support, drop your bottom knee to the floor. To add intensity, raise your top leg as high as possible, or do hip dips by lowering your hips almost to the floor and then back up again.

  • Lie on your right side with your right forearm below your shoulder.
  • Extend your legs, left foot on top of right. Tighten your core.
  • Lift your hips to form a straight line with your body. Raise your left arm straight up.
  • Rotate your torso toward the floor and bring your left arm under your body.
  • Rotate your torso and straighten your left arm to return to the starting position.
  • Start with 1 set of 8–12 reps.
  • Repeat on the other side.

Bicycle crunches

For this exercise, be sure to rotate your core and avoid pulling with your hips or straining your neck. Root your lower back into the floor and draw your shoulders away from your ears.

  • Lie on your back with bent knees and your heels flat on the floor.
  • Interlace your fingers at the base of your skull.
  • Come into the starting position by engaging your core, lifting your upper body from the floor, and raising your knees so they’re directly above your hips.
  • On an exhale, twist your torso as you bring your right elbow and left knee toward each other.
  • At the same time, straighten and extend your right leg.
  • Hold this position for 1–2 counts before inhaling to the starting position.
  • Then do the opposite side.
  • This is one repetition. Do 2–3 sets of 8–18 repetitions.

Boat pose (navasana)

This exercise builds core and spinal muscle. Elongate your spine and broaden across your chest throughout the pose.

  • From a seated position, lean back on your sitting bones and tailbone.
  • Raise your legs into the air to form a V shape.
  • Extend your arms in front so they’re parallel to the floor.
  • Hold for up to 1 minute.
  • Repeat 2–3 times.

Decline oblique crunches 

You can do this exercise on a flat surface if you don’t have a decline bench.

  • Lie on a decline bench.
  • As you start to lift your upper body, place your left hand behind your head and your right hand on your left thigh.
  • Continue raising your upper body as you rotate your torso to the left side, bringing your right elbow to your left knee.
  • Pause here for 1–2 seconds.
  • Slowly lower back down to the starting position.
  • Then do the opposite side.
  • Do 2–3 sets of 10–18 repetitions.

Burpees

This explosive exercise works your core and helps to burn fat.

  • Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart.
  • Squat down and place your palms in front of you on the floor directly under your shoulders.
  • Jump your legs back to come into a pushup position.
  • Do 1 pushup, then jump your feet back to the starting position.
  • Raise your arms overhead as you explosively jump.
  • Upon landing, lower back down to the squat position.
  • Do 6–10 sets of 12–25 repetitions.

Additional tips for a flat stomach 

To get a flat stomach and visible, defined abs, you’ll need to tone up your whole body and lower your body fat percentage. There are plenty of ways you can do this, and lots of options involve small, simple changes to your daily life.

Take a look at some of the following suggestions that can help to flatten out your belly. If you feel overwhelmed by choice, pick out the options that appeal to you most and will be easiest to implement into your life.

  • Keep moving. Engage in as much movement as possible, from formal exercise sessions to 5-minute bursts of activity during your day. Aim to do 30 to 60 minutes of exercise daily.
  • Sleep is key. Get plenty of high-quality sleep to allow your body to fully relax and restore. Sleeping for longer periods each night is associated with decreased hunger and appetite, plus you may have more energy to exercise.
  • Stay hydrated. Drink plenty of water, which can not only flush out your system but also help you to feel full, thus avoiding unhealthy snacking.
  • Listen to your gut. Pay attention to your gut health, which influences your weight, mood, and inflammation levels. Make a point to have plenty of probiotic foods such as pickles, tempeh, and kombucha.
  • Let it all go. Treat yourself to a Chi Nei Tsang massage. This powerful abdominal massage is said to release emotions, detoxify your body, and boost energy levels.
  • Fast your way to a flat stomach. There are a few ways you can do intermittent fasting, which may help you to lose weight and take a closer look at your eating patterns.
  • The right stuff. Fill your plate with foods that contain lots of fiber, protein, and healthy fats. Reduce your intake of sugary, salty, highly processed foods. If you’re prone to bloating, avoid foods such as beans, gluten, and dairy products.

How long before I start to see results?

The time it takes to achieve a flat stomach is different for everyone. It depends on a number of factors, including your body fat percentage.

You may start seeing signs of progress within a few weeks of consistent exercise, but it can take from a few months up to a year of work before you see the full results.

Remember to focus on the bigger picture — your health! — and make as many positive changes to your diet and exercise as possible.

Key takeaways 

A flat stomach is an attainable goal as long as you commit to a healthy exercise and lifestyle plan and stick to it. You should start to see visible improvements within a few weeks to a few months.

How you wish to measure your success is up to you. You can base it on how you feel, how certain clothes fit, or actual measurements from your waist and hips.

The more commitment you have to your plan, the more likely you’ll be to get the results you want.

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