Belly fat is often the toughest segment to lose. The fat accumulated around the belly takes the maximum time to shed off. A majority of fitness experts advise to do the cardio after weight training if you want to lose fat from the belly area. The reason being, when you do cardio first, you use most of your energy for the anaerobic exercises which also tire your muscles. Here are some tips on stomach exercises.
Cardio or Weights first if you want to lose stomach fat?
If your goal is to lose weight, then you should focus on weights before cardio. According to a research for an American Council on Exercise Study, researchers from Western State Colorado University explored the different results of performing different exercises in a workout. After 24 training sessions with different optimal orders of exercises, they found that doing weights led to an increased heart rate that means more calorie burn than cardio. Doing weights first also meant having more energy to lift heavier weights, thereby increasing your metabolic lean muscle mass.
Cardio or Weights first if you want to look lean?
If you want to have a lean body and look good in a swim suit or show off your abs, then you need to divide your weight training and cardio and put them on separate days. The reason for this is that to get a lean looking body, you need to perform both the types of exercises with full energy and with 100% effort. According to certified personal trainer, Michael Berg from New York, “When you split up the focus of an individual workout session, you split the amount of energy you can dedicate to each activity.” Splitting your exercises this way, gives your body time to recover overnight, so that it can perform at its peak the next day. If you still want to mix both the types of exercises, it is always better to do weights first.
How Often Should I Work Out to Lose Belly Fat?
In order to maintain a lean muscle and lose belly fat, you need to be consistent with weight training. The best is to work out six days per week with weight lifting followed by light cardio on the seventh day. Also, concentrate on full-body workouts if you can work out only 4 days a week. However, for beginners, lifting six days a week can be too overwhelming and so they can gradually start with two strength sessions a week and then increase them to three sessions, as suggested by Stephen Cheuk, certificate IV Australian Institute of Personal Trainers and founder of S10 Training in New York.
What are the best exercises for losing belly fat?
If you are doing weight training for at least thrice a week, then you can focus more on compound exercises. These are multi-joint movements that work on large muscle groups and also bring about a greater energy use. This means that you need to work harder to perform these exercises and as a result, the body will burn more calories and fat. The common types of compound exercises are deadlifts, walking lunges, bench press, barbell back squats and pull-ups.
Sometimes, in spite of the common tried and tested formulas you might need to pay attention on how your body responds to both cardio and strength training. You can tweak up these exercises in a way that seems most comfortable and effective for you.