The Best Belly Workouts for Women at the Gym

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One of the most common problem areas for women of all ages is the midsection. Females are genetically predisposed to holding extra body fat around the core. The notion that doing crunches alone will overcome this issue is false and leads many exercisers to be disappointed with the lack of results. Coupled with a healthy diet, the best approach to attaining definition and losing fat in the belly is a combination of cardiovascular activity and a variety of core toning exercises.

Cardiovascular Activity

  • When determining what cardiovascular activity is best for you, there is one simple rule. Choose the gym activity that you enjoy and will stick with. It can be running on the treadmill, bicycling, elliptical training, aerobics classes, or any other of the endless possibilities. The important factors are consistency, duration and heart rates achieved. For ultimate belly fat loss, vary your intensity between 60 to 75 percent of your maximum heart rate. For beginners, 20 to 30 minutes of cardio done three times a week will begin melting off the fat. For more advanced exercisers, five to six days of up to 45 minutes will kick the progress into high gear.

Core-Specific Toning

  • Through the years, exercise technology has taken us far beyond the standard crunch for our core training. A deeper understanding of how the core works has made it possible to tighten and tone it in a variety of ways. One of the best ways is to perform crunches on a stability ball. This activates the stabilizer muscles during the movement resulting in a more complete contraction of the muscles. Perform three sets of 25 repetitions. Next, switch it up and do oblique crunches on the ball with a slight twist to the side at the top of the motion for three sets of 25 reps.

    Performing planks in a body suspension trainer is one of the best advanced belly exercises. It brings an element of instability to the static contraction and will lead to faster results. Strive for three sets of one-minute holds and bring the legs into a reverse crunch, if you are further advanced. Be sure to squeeze the abs, glutes, and quadriceps throughout the hold and be careful not to arch your back to avoid injury. This combination of static and concentric contractions and movements that originate in both the lower and upper portion of the abdominals, as well as the oblique muscles, will offer the best well-rounded core routine.

Balance Training

  • Incorporating common gym pieces, such as balance trainers, into your total body workout is the best way to cause the core to stay tight during a wide variety of exercises targeting upper and lower body. Squats on a half ball can make the most of your gym time by toning your abs and legs at the same time. Also, using a stability ball as a bench when performing upper body exercises such as bench press or bicep curls, allows you to work out your belly and upper body simultaneously. Keep the core tight, use a manageable weight, and maintain proper form for safety.

Plyometric Exercises

  • "Plyometrics" refers to jump training or explosive movement based exercises. Whether you are jumping rope with small and rapid hops or performing jump squats or burpees with large and high leaps, this is one of the best types of exercises for your core. As the body prepares to propel itself into the air, the entire core stabilizes and tightens to ensure maximum lift. In turn, these movements aid in toning the belly by strengthening the core muscles and also raising the heart rate to burn more calories and fat. Adding a few sets of jump-based exercises to your workout will complete your well-rounded belly fat blasting routine.

References

  • Photo Credit Brand X Pictures/Brand X Pictures/Getty Images Jupiterimages/Brand X Pictures/Getty Images Comstock Images/Comstock/Getty Images Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images Stockbyte/Stockbyte/Getty Images
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