By Rosemary Marchese
Editor, B.A. Applied Sci (Physiotherapist)
How to shred your muffin top!
Ah, that dreaded little bulge over the pants. You may not like it when you do up your pants but it’s also not that good for you either. Having that extra fat anywhere around your waistline is more closely linked to the development and progression of chronic disease than the fat that sticks to your backside. So, aside from anything else, it’s not a bad idea to want to minimise the amount of fat that is sitting around that area. That’s really close to where a lot of your vital organs are and excess fat there is not such a good thing!
So how do you shift that stubborn fat?
Yes, it does come down to what you eat, how much you eat and how much you move, but it’s a little more complex (not much) than that. Here are 3 simple tips that are guaranteed to shift that muffin top.
- Cut back on the sugar. Um, yep it’s almost like sugar is the glue but in fact excess sugar (particularly fructose) in your diet will literally turn to fat and it’s quite likely it will end up bulging over your pants. Our bodies are not designed to take in extra fructose and so the next resort is that it turns to fat…and often this is visceral fat. Visceral fat is the fat that sits around your vital organs (as opposed to sitting just under your skin, say on your butt and thighs). Watch out for the excess sugar that’s hidden in ‘foods’ in your pantry. So many people get hung up on the fructose in fruit but we are designed to eat two pieces (maybe three small pieces) of fruit each day. It’s when we take in more than that that the bulge starts to happen.
- Add HIIT – high intensity interval training – to your workouts. This involves shorter workouts but adding in short bouts of high intensity training followed by rest. So, if you have been going for lots of long runs, for example, you could try switching one or two of these sessions for HIIT. Even 10-15 minute sessions of HITT can boost your metabolism and help you shift that stubborn fat.
- Move more during the day. Even if you are getting in a daily workout you still need to move more during the day. This could mean a 30 minute power walk during the day but it also means getting up off your butt at least once every hour – get up and hang the clothes if you’re at home or get up to see a colleague at work rather than send an email.