The concept of “spot reduction,” that is, the seeming phenomenon of being able to concentrate fat loss in a particular segment of the body, is impossible to accomplish. This popular myth is shared among a decent percentage of active gym-goers. While it could simply be a psychological ploy that some exercise enthusiasts may adopt for motivation purposes, fat reduction cannot occur in one spot of the body. This means you must reduce overall body fat in order to lose fat in a particular region of your body. A majority of men and women store excess amounts of fat in their bellies, but belly fat cannot be absolved by a few jogging sessions on the treadmill, nor will performing ridiculous amounts of crunches help you eliminate fatty tissues.
Several physiological factors dictate where fat is stored throughout the body. Males, for example, are more likely to store a higher percentage of body fat in their abdominal region as compared to females, who typically store fat in the hips and thighs. While gender is a critical factor in determining how much and where fat is stored because of hormones, other variables include age, body type and genetics. Some people are simply more prone to acquiring excess fat throughout their bodies than others. Nobody is capable of concentrating weight loss efforts on a certain segment of their body. There is no such thing as “spot reduction.”
Effect of Abdominal Exercise
For whatever reason, a decent percentage of workout enthusiasts believe that exercises such as crunches, sit-ups, hip abductions and leg raises will help shed fatty issues in the gut. While these exercises are certainly beneficial to a certain degree in strengthening the muscles underneath fatty tissues, they do not burn belly fat. Strength training is an important aspect of altering overall body composition and ultimately shedding belly fat, although it will not burn off fat on its own. You must incorporate significant cardiovascular activity into your workout program and also maintain a low-carb, high-protein diet in order to achieve your fat loss goals.
Lower Abdominal Myth
The lower abdominal myth is an integrated fallacy of “spot reduction.” Some people believe that there is such a thing as the “lower abs.” However, ExRx.net explains that isometric exercises, such as leg raises, do in fact force the entire abdominal region to contract, despite a burning sensation seemingly stemming from the “lower” midsection. That burning sensation you feel as a result of frequent repetition is caused from lactic acid, which occurs because of the metabolism in red blood cells lacking mitochondria, or cells that cause energy production. Conventional wisdom might cause someone to think this sensation is resulting in strength gain and fat loss. However, it is rather a process of fatigue.
High Repetitions Do Not Cause Fat Loss
High repetitions of abdominal exercises will also not help you shed belly fat. Spot reduction does not exist. Performing extraneous amounts of repetitions will strengthen the muscle fibers in abdominal muscles, but it will not result in significant fat loss. Everyone has “abs” underneath the layer of fat in the stomach region. Losing the fat is a difficult process, especially considering predisposed physiological factors. You might need to severely alter your lifestyle if you’re serious about losing belly fat in attempt to gain washboard abs. This means you must completely overhaul your diet and eat foods rich in vitamins and minerals, and protein. You must also minimize carb intake and significantly decrease consumption of fatty foods. It’s also important to make a dedicated effort to engage in high-intensity cardiovascular activity, such as running and swimming. The sooner you relieve yourself of the spot reduction myth, the sooner you can begin truly working toward your goal.