Spot reduction of fat is thought to be a myth. In other words, doing a ton of sit-ups is not supposed to make your stomach smaller.
This has been the conventional wisdom for nearly thirty years.
And it makes sense. Scientists would compare the size of the arms of tennis players, and the amount of fat was the same in both arms, although only one swung the racket.
And while there have been some novel experiments to show spot reduction is not possible, new research is showing that it is possible.
This does not mean that if you do these things you will suddenly get washboard abs, but you can reduce the amount of fat in those stubborn areas, in other words spot reduce.
Articles in the American Journal of Physiology show that exercise in the fasted state actually targets fat differently.
Strangely when you exercise fasted, it’s not the sit-ups that work, it’s the core work around the area you want to target that seems to shrink the most.
Part of the reason seems to be that fat is excreted using the lymphatic system. In other words, unlike most body systems, fat is not moved by blood flow.
The way you get things to move through the lymph system is physical movement.
So, stretching can get fat to move around.
While tons of sit-ups will make the ab muscles bigger and stronger, it’s the movement around the mid-section that actually moves the fat.
Now consider getting the fat you want to target warm.
You can feel for yourself that in stubborn fat areas (stomach for men, hips for women) these areas are noticeably cooler to the touch.
It’s because of the nature of the fat in the area. These are the so-called white fat cells that the body will stubbornly hold on to.
One way to get them smaller is to warm them up. While the neoprene belts that are supposed to help you spot reduce your waist by sweating don’t work, they do work at increasing the temperature of the fat in the area.
This will help you utilize the lymph system to push this fat out.
Now why do you want to exercise with no food in your system?
You want to get thermogenesis to work in your favor by getting the MiR-133A gene working for you. This only happens when there is no or low glucose in your blood stream.
That means, don’t exercise until it has been eight to 12 hours since your last food.
Trying these two techniques will not make up for consuming alcohol. Your liver will not release the MiR-133A gene where it is busy getting alcohol out of your system.
Most of your visible abs are really a function of your overall body fat percentage. Your abs won’t be visible until you get your body fat below 20% in most men.
But if you have a relatively low body fat percentage, and you still have love handles, trying these strategies can do a great deal for your appearance.
And while some might think that this is just vanity, your appearance does matter.
It gives you more confidence, which improves every area of your life.
So, don’t believe the old myth that spot reduction is impossible. It is possible, but you have to approach it in a very systematic way. More sit-ups are not going to make it happen.