July 20th 2016
The belly fat-blitzing ab workouts that really work
September 30th 2016 / 1 comment
We asked top personal trainer Dalton Wong for a workout plan that targets belly fat - use this print-and-keep guide at the gym for a flatter tummy in no time
Does navigating your way around the gym floor cause you to break into a sweat before you’ve even stepped onto the treadmill? You’re not alone. With an overwhelming selection of equipment, weights and exercises to choose from, a trip to the gym can sometimes hinder rather than help our quest for a flatter stomach.
So what’s the winning formula for banishing the belly fat for good? “There are three main pillars that when done correctly will help you greatly reduce your belly fat,” explains top personal trainer and founder of Twenty Two Training Dalton Wong.
1. Get lean
“The first pillar is that you need to make sure that you're as healthy and lean as possible," explains Dalton. "One of the most effective ways to do this is to increase your lean muscle mass and perform high intensity cardio training.”
2. Rest and recuperate
So what should you combine your gym workout with? “The second pillar which is often neglected or overlooked is the regeneration process of the body,” explains Dalton. “Taking care of your body via soft tissue techniques, stretching and meditation all help calm your nervous system and at the same time balance out your body.” Dalton recommends leaving a rest day in between each workout in order to reap optimum rewards. So aim for one day of fat burning, one day of rest, one day of cardio, one day of rest and so on.
3. Healing foods
“The last pillar is nutrition and using foods to heal your body and not ones that break it down - finding out what foods help increase your energy, make you feel full and avoiding foods that make you tired, bloated and restless.” When all is said done, if you’re not eating well, what you do in the gym pretty much counts for nothing. Read our top tips for eating your way to flatter abs here to use in conjunction with the below exercises. Dalton recommends kimchee and sauerkraut as his favourite belly fat busting foods of choice.
To take the guesswork out of the gym, we’ve asked Dalton to create an expert workout guide for us on how to lose belly fat in the best possible way and reach our fitness goals effectively and efficiently. Comprising of a workout targeted at increasing your lean muscle mass and another for fat melting cardio, each are designed to be alternated on separate days as part of a wider healthy living programme.
The workout plan
Now you know the winning three-step formula to a flatter stomach, here are Dalton Wong's recommended workout plans and training regimes that you can print out and take with you on the gym floor. Schedule a rest day between each workout - so start with the fat-burning plan, follow with a day of rest, then one day of cardio, then one day of rest and repeat.
Workout 1: your 13 minute fat burning complex
These 6 key moves will work the whole body and will make you a fat burning furnace.
Choose a weight that you can perform for 10-12 reps in perfect form. Ask one of your nearby gym instructors to show you the moves first to reduce risk of injury and ensure you’re doing them safely and correctly.
Do the following exercises for 1 minute each.
1. A squat to shoulder press
Set your feet shoulder-width apart. Hold your dumbbells at shoulder level, elbows bent, with your upper arms parallel to the floor. Push your hips back, bend your knees and lower your body as far as you can go. Push back up and press the dumbbells up over your head. Repeat.
2. A standing bent over row
Set your feet a little wider than shoulder-width apart. Arch the lower back and grab your dumbbells in an overhand grip, holding them the same distance apart as your feet in front of you and in line with your knees. With your lower back arched at about 45 degrees, (bending at the hips), squeeze your shoulder blades together as you draw the dumbbells towards you until they touch your chest in a row-like motion. Do not allow your torso to move. Lower the dumbbells back to their original position and repeat.
3. An alternate reverse lunge to bicep curl
Keep your dumbbells by your sides, head up, back straight and feet together. Lunge backwards with your right foot, bending both knees to lower yourself to the floor. Ensure your front knee is always in line with and never in front of your toes at the bottom of the lunge. At the same time as you lunge backwards, bring the dumbbells up towards you in a curl, keeping your upper arms by your sides throughout the movement. Bring them back down as you draw yourself up and repeat on the other leg. Repeat.
4. Seated dumbbell rotations
Sit on the floor, slightly bend your knees in front of you and hold one dumbbell at its ends in front of your chest. Lean back slightly, keep your stomach tight and rotate from side to side, touching the weight to the floor at the end of each rotation. Keep both feet on the floor if you’re a beginner, working towards doing the move with your feet off the floor with your ankles crossed.
5. A plank
In a push up position, bend your elbows by 90 degrees, resting on your forearms with them at 12 o’clock. Ensure you keep them directly underneath your shoulders, with your body in a straight line from head to toe. Hold for as long as you can.
From a standing position with your feet shoulder-width apart, squat down and place your hands on the floor in front of you and just outside of your feet. Jump both feet back so that you are in a plank position. Jump both feet back up towards your hands and jump up into the air, extending your arms straight above you.
Complete the circuit 2 times in total, resting for 30 seconds in between.
The key is to perform all the exercises with perfect form and to a high intensity.
Workout 2: fat melting cardio
Stop the steady state cardio, and sprint, cycle fast or row with more intensity and speed instead. Sprinting is a great activity that can be done anywhere and is far superior to steady state cardio. Choose a distance or even a time and then go all out! Sprinting is all out training!
Try the following:
If you’re in the gym: sprint for 30 seconds and then recover for 3 minutes.
If you’re outdoors: sprint for 100m and then recover for 300m.
Start off by doing as many as you can, it should be intense so if you’re slowing down or too tired, then that signals it’s a good time to stop.
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