Exercise is one of the most important factors in achieving a healthy and enjoyable lifestyle for yourself. With many surveys, it has been concluded that people prefer a good exercise routine for losing fat, especially belly fat.
Stubborn fat is one of the most challenging and significant problems for people nowadays, which takes a lot of time to get rid of. But exercise is something that seems most effective and efficient in losing stubborn fat as fast as possible. Likewise, if you are looking to get a flat belly, you must maintain a good workout routine with the most effective exercises, and you must be consistent with it. One more thing that is very important to understand is to find ways to enjoy your exercises rather than getting stressed out about them. Finally, seek medical advice before planning your exercise to make sure you don’t overwork yourself.
Top 10 Exercises to Get a Flat Belly
1. Bicycle crunches
Crunches are considered one of the best and most effective belly workouts, which have a lot of variations, but bicycle crunches are the perfect exercise for getting a flat belly.
Lie down on the floor, pressing your lower back into the floor and your knees bent. Your feet should be firmly planted on the floor, and your hands should be tucked behind your head. Make sure you are not straining your neck. Contract your abdominal muscles, bringing your abdomen in toward your spine to stabilize it. Pull your shoulders back and slowly elevate your knees to about a 90-degree angle, elevating your feet off the floor with your hands. Exhale and begin with a gentle bicycle pedal motion, bringing one knee up to your armpit and straightening the other, keeping both legs lifted over your hips. Rotate your torso in such a way that your elbow touches the opposite knee as it rises. Alternately, twist to the opposite side while pulling one knee towards your armpit and extending the other leg till your elbow reaches the alternate knee. 15 to 25 reps and three sets are recommended. Remember to start slowly. If you can’t do 15 to 25 reps at first, that’s fine. In time you will build up to that level.
The plank is considered one of the best exercises you can perform to get a flat belly, and it improves your core strength by building isometric strength, which helps you tone your abdominal area. A plank involves balancing in a straightened, horizontal position similar to a push-up for as long as your body can hold it.
For doing a plank, you must go down on the floor in a push-up position. Next, put your weight on the forearms while bending your elbow joints. You must maintain a straight line throughout your body from ankle to shoulders and then tighten your muscles around your belly button. Then hold this position for the maximum time and then relax.
When you first start doing this exercise, you may hold the plank position for just 10 to 15 seconds, which is fine, but the time will increase when you keep doing the exercise regularly. For example, do this exercise for 1 minute with 10-second breaks and increase the time limit.
3. Russian Twists
The Russian twist is a famous abdominal workout that strengthens your core and burns belly fat.
Sit on a floor mat, then slowly start to lean until you feel like your abdominal muscles are fully engaged, then bend your knees and lift your upper body towards the knee direction; you should form a V-shape. Now hold your arms in a straight line in front of your face and twist from one side to the other. Make sure that you are twisting with the aid of your abdominal muscles rather than the arm muscles alone.
You can also modify this exercise by holding a weight or ball while twisting from one side to the other. Do this exercise about 20 to 25 times in each workout session. Start slowly, you may be able to do less than 20 at first, and this is fine too.
Sit-ups are another effective exercise for getting rid of belly fat, and it is also very beneficial for strengthening your abdominal muscles.
Start the exercise by lying flat on a yoga mat and putting your arms behind your head. Now keep your lower body stationary and move your upper body towards the knees. Take a deep breath, inhale as you lower your body back to the mat, and exhale while going up. In this exercise, you must make sure that your abdominal muscles are the ones doing the work and also ensure that your neck is not strained.
Repeat this exercise 10 to 20 times regularly.
5. Mountain Climbing
Mountain climbing is an abdominal workout, but it also provides cardio training, which is beneficial for your heart and toning your entire body.
Place your hands on the floor in front of you, about shoulder-width apart from each other for perfect balancing. Now pull your left leg forward and extend the right leg back by using your toes to push off. Then do the same for the other side and perform the exercise by alternating between both legs for several reps.
You can modify the exercise by adding extra height through an exercise ball or speeding up your steps.
6. Swiss Ball
Doing an exercise with the Swiss ball is very effective for having a flat belly as it directly incorporates your abdominal muscles and helps to get rid of the belly fat as well.
To start the exercise, kneel on the floor with your feet resting and lean slowly on the Swiss ball, forearms first. Now use your forearms to roll the ball in a circular motion while keeping the rest of the body balanced.
Do this exercise for 60 seconds in 3 sets and increase when your body gets adapted to the workout. You can also modify the exercise by making larger circles to make the workout more difficult for yourself.
7. Jump Rope/Skipping
Skipping is one of the best cardio exercises that is very efficient for your abdominal muscles and works very well for a flat belly. Other benefits of this workout are that you can perform it indoors with a rope or even without it, where at times other cardio workouts such as running or swimming may need you to be outdoors, which can be inconvenient.
Skipping for losing belly fat requires a specific technique which is to stand straight with a bit of distance between the feet. Now lift a few inches or centimeters from the ground each time the rope passes. Make sure your heels do not touch the ground. One more important thing is that you should try and turn the rope with your wrist muscles rather than your whole arm.
Do this cardio exercise for at least 60 seconds and increase the time once you get comfortable with the exercise.
8. Toe Reaches
This exercise is perfect for developing core strength, and it is a good warm-up for beginners as well.
Lie on the floor with your feet raised, and by keeping the legs at a 90-degree angle, engage your lower abdominal muscles as you lift your upper body and reach for your toes by pausing for 2 to 3 seconds at the top and slowly laying them back down to the starting position.
Do three sets of 15 reps.
9. Boat Pose
Introducing a boat pose into your workout session is beneficial in getting a flat belly. This yoga pose can tone your belly muscles, which can be helpful if you are trying to achieve abs.
To start this exercise or yoga pose, first sit on a yoga mat or the floor with your knees in a bent position. Now lean back slightly with your legs up and a straight body so that you form a V-shape. Your arms should be parallel and stretched out, and the palms should be faced inwardly. Try to hold this position for at least 15 seconds.
You can do two sets of this exercise, each with 30 seconds, and you can also increase the duration as you get more comfortable with this exercise.
10. Side Planks
Side planks are a variation of the standard plank, which is very beneficial for your belly fat, especially the sides of your abdomen.
Lie on the left side with your left forearm below your shoulder, extend your legs with your right foot on your left while tightening your core. Now lift your hips to form a straight line with your body, lift your left arm straight up, and move your torso towards the floor. Bring your arm under the body, bring the body slowly to the starting position, and repeat the procedure on the other side.
Do one set of 12 to 15 reps.
All these exercises are efficient for getting a flat belly, so add them into your daily workout routine along with a healthy low-calorie diet, you will get some results very soon.
Additional Tips to Help You Get a Flat Belly
Maintaining a good exercise routine is very important for achieving a flat belly, but specific tips can follow with your workout plan that can help you to get the results a little earlier. That is very motivational as well as a healthy thing so, here are some additional tips to help you get a flat belly:
Stay hydrated. This is very important for your health, especially when you are doing an exercise routine. You will maintain the fluid percentage of your body and flush out all the toxins out of the body. Drinking enough water keeps you full, enabling you to avoid unnecessary snacking to balance your food intake.
Having good sleep is essential for achieving the best out of your exercises. This allows the body to relax and restore its strength. Also, when you exercise, your body muscles need time to recover from the workout. Otherwise, you will have many cramps that will interrupt the procedure. Sleep is essential to have enough energy for the exercises.
Staying active is another beneficial tip for getting a flat belly, as when you keep moving just like exercising, your body’s metabolism is boosted and remains in a continuous fat-burning state. This enables the belly fat to burn faster, so try to be more active and keep moving throughout the day.
Maintaining Salt Intake
Maintaining salt intake is another critical tip of getting a flat belly. Keep in mind that the amount of salt you take in your body will require you to drink a certain amount of water. Too much salt can retain water and cause bloating. However, salt can also be good in moderation, and along with enough water, will keep the body’s electrolytes balanced. Eating too much salt and not drinking enough water can imbalance the body’s electrolytes, which can increase your blood pressure, which over time is not healthy for your body. Be careful with the amount of salt you consume during the day.
Do not get stressed, according to many medical pieces of research. It has been established that having anxiety or stress releases cortisol. Cortisol is a hormone that can encourage weight gain and interrupt your healthy lifestyle, so it is essential for you to be fully relaxed and calm to encourage weight loss.
Balancing Gut Health
Maintaining good gut health is an essential factor for good health, especially when you’re doing exercises. These healthy eating habits influence fat burning, enhance your mood, and maintain inflammation levels in the body, so add plenty of probiotic food to your diet. Some plants such as pickles, fermented vegetables, or kefir can help. Yogurts can also provide many beneficial probiotics. Probiotics can also be ingested in pill form. These are only some suggestions. It is always best to check with your physician first to help you select the best food plan for you.
Massages are beneficial for loosening tight muscles and relieving stress. This helps to gain more energy for your exercise routine. In addition, relaxing your body through a massage is very beneficial as it recovers your muscles and treats the cramps that you may get from the workouts.
It is essential to start your exercise journey at a slow pace that is easy to handle. Take small steps and begin at an average speed rather than starting from a problematic level as it will be hard for your body to adapt, and it can also potentially lead to strains or sprains. You will not be able to keep up with your exercise routine if you push yourself too hard. Therefore, start slowly and then increase the intensity levels of the workout slowly over time.
It is critical for your muscles to get enough time to recover. If you don’t give your muscles time to recover, you will experience painful cramps and decrease your energy levels. You will not be able to continue the exercise routine for very long. Get plenty of sleep and relax as much as you can. Give your muscles time to recover.
What Diet Changes You Should Do for a Flat Belly?
Doing exercises is the essential part of getting a flat belly, but with that, it is also essential for you to make some diet changes. We know that diet and exercise go together, and we have to maintain both of them to lose weight. Particularly when you are trying to achieve a flat and toned belly. So here are some of the diet changes that you may want to adopt for achieving and maintaining a flat belly:
- It is vital to maintain your macronutrient percentages. Your food intake should be high in protein, good carbs (such as from whole grains, fruits, and oats), and some healthy fats (such as from nuts, eggs, and fish). Avoid eating highly refined carbohydrates (such as from enriched or processed white bread, sugar, and high-fructose corn syrup) and unhealthy fats (such fried food made from highly processed vegetable oils and seed oils) to aid in overall health so that you feel better and more willing to exercise.
- Eat more low calorie-dense foods, such as fruits and vegetables, rather than high calorie foods that are low volume and quickly consumed, such as pizza, burgers, and most fast food.
- Consume more fiber and protein in your diet plan. Doing this will help to keep you full and satisfied for a longer time. This will help you with weight loss and help you avoid unhealthy binge eating.
- Avoid foods that contain trans-fats, as they have a lot of adverse effects on your cardiovascular health and can lead to weight-gain.
- Do not consume foods high in added sugar as they do not promote a satisfying fullness after you eat, which can lead to binge eating, and can contribute to other adverse health effects such as insulin resistance.
All these diet changes will not only help you with weight loss, but will enhance your endurance, performance, and increased energy for the workout sessions. Together these suggestions should promote a flat belly and help with your overall well-being.
The Final Takeaway
Having a toned and fit body isn’t just a health trend anymore, with recent health studies and research, it has been concluded that it is a good way to significantly improve your health and longevity. One of the most important parts of your weight-loss journey is to be happy and enjoy the process. If you have any diet or exercise concerns, please consult your physician.