Holidays are about enjoying yourself, so you may have chosen to side line diet and fitness tips during your time in the sun.
But now, you’re about to go back to work and you are looking to lose weight quickly. However, remember, quick fixes never last and only hurt your metabolism in the long run!
To achieve healthy weight loss, tone up and get a flatter stomach for the long term, it is vital to balance your body internally by improve your digestion, activating your core muscles and reducing your daily stress.
Train, don’t drain!
Many people spend too much time at the gym, overexerting themselves as part of their exercise program. This increases adrenaline and cortisol, which are both stress hormones.
Cortisol’s role is to break down muscle tissue (in a catabolic reaction), by spurring the release of cortisol you are impeding your metabolism rather than speeding it up. My advice is to keep your workouts very short, no longer than 15-20 minutes. To under exercise is difficult, so learn to listen to your body! Once you feel any changes in your mood, energy levels or get a blood sugar drop then stop!
Grains such as rice, bread, oats and cereals can contribute towards weight gain but also bloating in the belly area as well. Such grains can cause the gut to become inflamed and swollen, which stops the efficient flow of food through the digestive tract.
Protein will keep the hunger pangs at bay and the amino acids in protein rich foods such as meat, chicken, fish, eggs, diary and cheese will help increase muscle tone, therefore you will appear a lot leaner and healthier as a result.
Get to the core!
The deep abdominal wall known as the TVA is ideally suited to perform a girdle-like supportive function (around your lower abs like a belt) allowing you to have a flat belly.
Some people suffer from dysfunctional core muscles due to the fact we live in culture that sees us spending hours and hours sitting down.
This leads the muscles in the upper abdominals to become tight and overactive. Consequently, performing exercises such as abdominal crunches will only activate our upper abdominals to become tighter, as they flex (pull) our spine forward.
So, try to avoid doing abdominal crunches and instead do the plank exercise as it focuses on strengthening and tightening your lower abdominals.
This exercise is very important because it links the Glutes (butt), which are your powerhouse muscles and the core with each other. This helps you achieve a flatter stomach in the long run.
Your body weight is always best
Adding body resistance training to your exercise regime is a great way of toning and sculpting your body to achieve a firm and defined look, without looking bulky.
There are many perks to resistance training: firstly it will not push your body into a catabolic state as aerobic training does. It will rather push you towards an anabolic state, this means the body is making lean healthy muscle instead of breaking it down. Resistance training is also linked to metabolic benefits, such as better insulin sensitivity. One of the main reasons we store fat around the middle is due to high insulin levels in our body.
Squats, lunges, press-ups, pull-ups and even yoga poses are all great body weight exercises you can mix in to your routine and the great perk is that you do not require any equipment or even a gym membership.