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A simple plan to banish the belly

Here’s the deal. Nearly every day we tell ourselves we are going to exercise more, eat better and finally get in shape. The problem is, life has tendency to throw some pretty regular spanners in the works.

I get it, not everyone has the time, or desire to go to the gym. With the plethora of commitments most of us have, from looking after the kids to meeting deadlines at work, it can often be hard to fit in any exercise or time for yourself at all!

However, by not carving out any time to look after yourself you are likely to see a significant gain in body fat, especially around the hips and waist, not to mention the plethora of risks associated with a sedentary lifestyle.

If this sounds familiar, there’s a simple solution: start small. By carving out just 10-20 minutes a day to create a morning routine, you can make a profound improvement to your physique. Not only will you look great, you will have a lot more energy, enjoy much better sleep quality and feel far happier in general.

I would suggest adding the following three simple bodyweight exercises to your morning routine. First thing in the morning is a great time to fire up your central nervous system, get the heart and lungs pumping and dust off some cobwebs. A short workout also helps kick start your metabolism and burn off some extra calories before the day has even started. Keep it short and simple, otherwise you are likely to skip it.

It’s worth noting here, that this should be an addition to a well-structured nutrition plan that focuses on creating a calorie deficit. It is impossible to lose any belly fat if you are consuming too many calories, no matter how hard you exercise.

Pause Squats

Pause squats
Despite not targeting the abs specifically, compound movements like the squat are great for engaging larger volumes of muscle mass, crucial for burning a higher number of calories.

1) Stand with your feet slightly wider than shoulder width apart, with your hands held out in front of you and chest held high.
2) Sit down into a squat position keeping you head up and upper leg parallel to the floor. Pause for two seconds.
3) Thrust back up into your starting position and squeeze your glutes and thighs.
4) Repeat as many times as you can for one minute.

Press up to mountain climber

Press up to mountain climber
1) Start in a normal press up position with your hands directly below your shoulders. Brace your stomach muscles to create a tight trunk.
2) Lower your chest towards the floor, whilst maintaining the tension in your stomach.
3) Drive back up to the start position pushing through your chest and shoulders.
4) From this position, alternate raising knees to your chest, to the count of ten.
5) Then go back to the start and repeat for a minute

Ab cycle

Ab cycle
1) Lie flat on your back with you hands behind your head. Raise your head and shoulders slightly off the floor and push your lower back into the ground. Now raise one knee to the opposite elbow.
2) Quickly switch knees and elbows in a cycle motion for one minute. Aim to keep your lower back in contact with the floor for the duration.

Important points to remember
This workout should be completed alongside a well-structured nutrition plan that creates a daily calorie deficit. For any fat loss plan to be effective you MUST burn off more calories than you consume on a consistent basis
• Try to complete the circuit 3-5 times a week
• Complete the circuit 3-5 times per workout depending on your available time
• Complete each exercise for 1 minute with 20 seconds rest between each exercise.

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