Tuesday July 18 2017

Exercise your way to a flat tummy

Advice.  Ask your doctor before starting

Advice. Ask your doctor before starting exercise routine 

By Beatrice Nakibuuka

Many people, mostly because they live a life of no exercise, develop belly fat which they eventually struggle to shed off. Losing belly fat requires a good old-fashioned sweat session and strict attention to diet. The exercises that help you lose belly fat require you to work at a high intensity during both cardio and strength training.

Why belly fat?
Abdominal fat is one of the most dangerous fats on your body because any fat around your vital organs such as the liver, kidneys and pancreas can lead to adverse health effects such as Type II diabetes, insulin resistance, some cancers and heart disease.
Abdominal fat is found near the heart, liver, and other major organs. It presses on them, thus disrupting their daily function.

The exercises
Although change in feeding is recommended for people with belly fat, exercising is more important. However, before starting the exercises, know your body weight and have a target.
Robert Grace Mutebi, an aerobics instructor and chairman United Fitness Health club, says losing belly fat is not something that happens in one day. It is a gradual process that requires consistency and hard work.
“Exercising is the best way to lose belly fat but it takes courage. It is not a one-day job. One must be patient and adhere to an exercise routine and diet. Start with walking in the morning for 15 minutes daily for a week,” he advises.
Mutebi advises against drinking cold water after walking and instead recommends lemon juice with no sugar.

This is because the body is warm from exercising and drinking ice-cold water causes rapid drop of temperature levels which burdens the digestive system.
After a week, do more exercises such as skipping a rope. You can walk for 30 minutes before skipping 30 times in the morning and evening.

Mutebi says: “Do not stop walking but instead increase the intensity of the exercises by topping it up with skipping. So, before skipping, walk because walking makes the joints ready for heavier exercise. Walking also awakens the joints for heavier exercises lowering the likelihood of damaging the joints.”

The walking and skipping exercises can be done for two weeks after which one should be able to notice a change in the rate of breathing after walking for a long time. Here, Mutebi cautions against reducing the intensity of exercise and recommends working harder.
Harder exercises such as squatting with hands on the head as well as sit-ups can be introduced depending on how much belly fat is there to lose.

He says with continuous physical exercise, belly fat must be lost within three months although for some people it may take longer.

While you aim to lose belly fat, the speed at which you walk is important. You can get a timer to gauge how far you can go in 30 minutes. The distance you walk is equally important. A normal, slow walk will burn some calories but not as much as a brisk walk.

Adding double leg jumps using a rope to your existing routine will help to improve your breathing, strengthen your legs, shoulders and arms on top of burning the belly fat.

Sit ups
Although sit ups strengthen the abdominal muscles, they will help you lose fat in general. Doing sit-ups at a moderate intensity for 10 minutes daily will burn several calories.

This is one exercise that should be a part of virtually everyone’s routine. It is relatively simple to perform, requires no equipment, and can be done just about anywhere.Although squats are often regarded as “leg” exercises, they actually offer benefits throughout your entire body, including the belly.