How to Shrink Your Waist and Lose Belly Fat | 4 Exercises
In this blog, I’ll show you How to Shrink Your Waist and Lose Belly Fat with 4 exercises that can help you lose weight and shape up around the waist. Just remember ab exercises won’t do it alone, you need to do them in combination with being a caloric deficit and full body resistance training!
1: Plank progressions (knees or toes)
2: Side plank dips (knees or toes)
3: Hanging knee raises (bent or straight knees)
4: Active Dead Bug (alternating sides)
Exercise 1: Plank Progressions
You can start in the plank on your knees and then build up to your toes. I want you to make sure your shoulders are right over your elbows, and you tuck your pelvis back and down. Bring your bellybutton up close to your spine. Hold this for as long as possible.
Exercise 2: Side Plank Dips
Again, you can be on your knees for the easy progression, or on your toes for the advanced progression. Make sure your toes (or knees), hips and shoulders are in one straight line. From your shoulders, you also want a straight line down to your elbow. Don’t let the elbow go in front of the shoulder, and don’t push yourself away from your elbow. This is very important. In the side plank lift your hips up, so you’re holding a side plank, and then slowly lower your hips down towards the floor, and then again contract your muscles and lift your hip back up.
Exercise 3: Hanging Knee Raise
Hang from a pull-up bar, and pull your knees as high up towards your chest as you possibly can. Slowly lower your knees down again, and repeat. If you want to make it even harder you can stretch your knees and do this exercise with straight knees.
Exercise 4: Active Dead Bug
Lie on your back, tilt your pelvis back, and press your lower back down. Make sure your spine is touching the floor from your neck all the down to your tailbone. Especially your lower back has to be glued to the floor the whole time. Let your arms go straight up into the ceiling and lift your knees up so your hips are making a 90-degree angle. Now bend your knees so they are also making a 90-degree angle.
Lie here, press your lower back down, and then slowly let your right hand and your left leg go down towards the floor without lifting your lower back.
Now bring them back into the starting position, and switch to the other side. Slowly let your left hand and your right foot that go down towards the floor. Then bring them back, alternating sides. How many repetitions and how low you go depends on your strength. Make sure your lower back stays down throughout the whole exercise. If you feel your lower back lifting up don’t lower your foot and hand further, and while exhaling contract your core and bring your arm and leg back to the starting position.
I recommend that you perform 15-20 repetitions of each of these exercises for three to four sets. Do this three or four times a week in combination with your normal resistance training program. I also recommend that you combine all four exercises together in a circuit type workout to further elevate your heart rate and burn even more calories as you’re strengthening your abs.
If you want to watch the full video of the exercises, it’s up on my YouTube!
And if YouTube isn’t for you, just keep reading because I’m about to share more tips on how to shrink your waist and lose belly fat!
Nutrition Tips On How to Shrink Your Waist and Lose Belly Fat
Just remember that spot reduction isn’t possible, and these exercises won’t make you lose fat around your abs if you are not in a caloric deficit. Your waist looks “big”, because of the abundance of fat in the area, not because you don’t have muscles underneath. Everyone has a six-pack. For some it’s just covered under a layer of fat. And as long as the fat is present you won’t be able to see what’s hiding underneath.
Your priority should be on cleaning up your nutrition and incorporating more full body training as well. And I know I’ve said this a million times, but I’ll just keep saying it, drill it into your brain: You have to be in a caloric deficit to shrink fat around your waist and see your abs!
My nutrition tip is that you start getting rid of the obvious garbage in your diet. So start by getting rid of sugar, excessive alcohol, and fried food. Just cut them out of your diet. You don’t need them, your body doesn’t need them. So get rid of those foods and replace them with more nutritious foods. You know what to eat. Lean proteins, veggies, good starchy carbs from potatoes, rice, oats. Get some healthy fats in there. Throw in some avocado or some nuts. You don’t necessarily have to worry about the macros at this point. Just really clean up your diet, get rid of all the garbage, and just focus on adding in healthy stuff.
Ps. And don’t drink your calories!
Workout Tips On How to Shrink Your Waist and Lose Belly Fat
I’m here to tell you the truth: It’s not enough to train your abs if you want to lose fat around your waist!
It’s much more important to do full body resistance training, get your heart rate nice and high, and burn a lot of calories in the time that you spend in the gym. For five more tips on how to shrink your waist and lose belly fat, you can have a look at this blog from last week. You can also check out this video where I’m showing you five of my favorite fat loss exercises!
Another important tool to lose belly fat is to increase your energy expenditure with some form of daily cardio. I recommend starting with adding 10 minutes of cardio into your daily routine if you’re not used to doing cardio already. Get on the treadmill and walk on an incline for 10 minutes after doing your ab exercises or your resistance training. Go for a brisk walk outside, do something that gets your heart rate up, but don’t overdo it and start by adding in 60 minutes of cardio every day. By adding too much cardio too soon you’ll lose weight in the beginning, but then what are you going to do when the 60 minutes is not enough anymore because your body has adapted? In my experience, it works best to start adding cardio more conservatively. Take your time, don’t look for the quick fix. Add 10 minutes of cardio, do your full body workout, and get your nutrition in check, and then add in these ab exercises, because it makes you feel good and you can feel your abs working. Over time, as your body adapts, you might need to increase your cardio by 10-15 minutes up to a maximum of 60 minutes per day. That’s ok, but take your time with it. Too much cardio too soon has a tendency to increase your appetite and make it harder for you to stick with your nutrition program, so it’s really not going to benefit you.