If I had a dollar for every time someone ask me, “how do I lose belly fat?” I would probably be the owner of a Fortune 500 company.
Look no further, I am going to provide you with a solution for the problem that has been weighing you down physically and mentally.
First and foremost, working out a specific area will not result in a decrease in body fat in that specific area.
Instead, what happens, is that you build muscle in that specific area, often underneath the layer of fat.
Now I bet you’re thinking,”well, now I’m screwed.”
On the contrary, you just need to be educated on how our bodies store and burn fat cells.
Why does the body store fat ? This is simple, our bodies’ number one concern is preservation of life. Our bodies preserve fat to ensure we have enough fat storages and glycogen to survive a famine or drought. Unfortunately, in most cases, if you’re reading this article which is located on the internet and accessed through your smartphone or computer, chances are famine or drought has never even crossed your mind.
How do I change how my body is hardwired?
Well, your body will always prioritize preservation of life over how you look in a swimsuit, how difficult it is to walk up and down flights of stairs or even your continued attempts to fit into the same clothing you fit into in high school. However, not all hope is lost. You can change the rate at which your body stores fat and by contrast burns calories. This is known as BMR - basal metabolic rate.
BMR or basal metabolic rate, refers to the number of calories our bodies burn even when resting to perform basic function such as processing nutrients from food, breathing, and cell production just to name a few.
How to Calculate BMR
Below is a BMR calculator to help determine approximately how many calories per day your body burns while at rest.
Why is it important to know my BMR?
Knowing your BMR is important because from that information you can appropriately consume based on your goals.
For example: If you are looking to lose body fat, and your BMR is 2500 you want to aim to consume less than that per day in order to see results without exercise.
It takes 3500 calories to burn 1lb of fat therefore if you are looking to lose 5lbs of fat, the total caloric deficit you need is approximately 17,500 calories.
Your body will begin to burn muscle if your deficit is too large as it tries to decrease your BMR. This is in part due to not having enough caloric intake to sustain the current amount of muscle mass.
How do I burn fat without losing muscle?
Resistance Training is by far the best way to burn fat while preserving muscle.
Not only will you burn calories from the workouts, contributing to a calorie deficit, you actually can increase your BMR - as every pound of muscle equates to more calories burned on a day to day basis. Compound movements such as squats and deadlifts will result in more calories burnt and more muscle recruitment, thus being the best for increasing BMR from resistance training.
Increasing muscle mass can result in either a quicker way to lose that stubborn belly fat or, over time and continued progression, getting to your goal in a sustainable way. This enables you to be able to eat the occasional unconventional meal without fear of lost progress.
HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training)
An article written by Martin J. Gibala from the American College of Sports Medicine titled "Metabolic Adaptations to Short-term High-Intensity Interval Training: A Little Pain for a Lot of Gain?" was quoted as saying this in relation to the benefits of HIIT training -
"Elite endurance athletes have long appreciated the role of high-intensity interval exercise as part of a comprehensive training program. Recent evidence suggests that - in young healthy persons of average fitness - intense interval exercise is a time-efficient strategy to stimulate a number of skeletal muscle adaptations that are comparable to traditional endurance training."
What is HIIT training?
HIIT Training is a workout arranged in bursts of 20-90 seconds in which you push yourself to your max every set. Short rest periods allow for recovery and injury prevention prior to challenging your max all over again. Numerous studies have shown that working at or close to your max helps to maximize the efficiency of a workout, increase cardiovascular endurance, increase metabolism, regulate insulin levels and losing body fat.
“All exercise helps burn fat by burning calories,” says fitness expert Rob Sulaver. But, he adds, “more intense exercise burns more fat-”.
Why is HIIT training more beneficial for fat loss?
A study published in Frontiers in Physiology cited on Science Daily titled HIIT helps combat high insulin resistance - a warning sign for diabetes states that
"A new study published in Frontiers in Physiology suggests that High-Intensity Interval Training is an efficient, effective way of cutting people's risk of developing type-2 diabetes, regardless of their levels of insulin resistance (a key warning sign for diabetes). Higher insulin resistance means the body starts failing to respond to insulin."
Insulin is the hormone that is expelled from your pancreas that helps to breakdown carbohydrates into fuel for your body.
Some of the most common causes of insulin resistance include excess body weight, too much belly fat, a lack of exercise, smoking and a lack of sleep.
Therefore, if you build up a resistance to insulin and your body becomes inefficient at breaking down carbohydrates, inevitably more will be stored as fat.
Try our BMR calculator, try resistance training, and try one of our Coach Koe HIIT classes or another HIIT type exercise program located on our instagram https://www.coachkoebootcamp.com/instagram in an effort to maximize results when attempting to lose that stubborn belly fat in 2020.
Fat Storage - How Fat Cells Work written by Craig Freudenrich. PH.D
Calculate Your Basal Metabolic Rate To Lose Weight written by Malia Frey and medically reviewed by Richard Fogoros. MD
HIIT helps combat high insulin resistance -- a warning sign for diabetes - Frontiers in Physiology
Insulin Resistance Causes and Symptoms written by Sari Harrar
High Intensity Interval Training: What is HIIT, and How Do You Know If You're Doing it? written by Marissa Gold