Picture this: You go to slip into your favorite pair of jeans only to realize they won't zip and there's some excess belly spillage, well, spilling over the waistline. A larger midsection is sometimes associated with aging, the Mayo Clinic explains. In fact, women can experience a transfer in body fat to the belly post-menopause. But don't fret, because there are ways to reduce the fat that's taken over your middle through lifestyle changes, diet, and exercise. We spoke with Anthony J. Yeung, CSCS, a fitness expert and the founder of GroomBuiler, who shares a five-minute daily workout for women to melt hanging belly fat.
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The dangers of hanging belly fat:
Dealing with hanging belly fat can be incredibly emotional and challenging, but it goes far beyond aesthetics. Carrying around extra abdominal—or visceral—fat can bring on many health risks such as type 2 diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, breathing problems, abnormal cholesterol, and even early mortality, the Mayo Clinic points out. Even if the scale isn't moving in an unfavorable direction, a lot of women will see a greater accumulation of abdominal fat as they age. A decline in estrogen, which determines where your body allocates its fat, could be the culprit of this.
It's important to note that you can achieve a toned midsection through specific ab exercises and strength work, but boosting your gym time alone won't help you completely shrink down your middle. According to the Mayo Clinic, you'll be able to melt extra fat all over your body by consuming a healthy diet full of lean protein and plant-based foods, ditching sugary drinks, being mindful of portion sizes, and adding the recommended amount of physical activity to your routine.
We have you covered with the fitness part of the belly-fat-melting equation with Yeung's five-minute daily workout for women to melt hanging belly fat. Set your timer for five minutes, and repeat the exercises as many times as you're able to. Read on to learn all about this efficient routine, and next, be sure to check out 6 Tips for Women To Lose Belly Fat & Keep It Off.
1. Reverse Lunges
The lunge is an incredibly productive exercise that puts your core and lower-body muscles to work. You can use just your body weight or add free weights. According to PureGym, your core reaps the benefits of this move as you put in the effort to maintain proper upright form. Since lunges activate large groups of muscles, they can speed up your metabolism, which in turn, will help you lose weight.
To set up for reverse lunges, Yeung instructs, "Take a long step back—long enough so that your knees make two 90-degree angles at the bottom—and pull yourself back up with your forward leg. Start with dumbbells and advance to a barbell in either the back squat or front squat position." Complete six reps or more on each leg.
The T-pushup begins by assuming a classic pushup/high plank with your hands planted on the ground under your shoulders and your body forming a straight line. From there, Yeung instructs, "Descend to the bottom, and as you're pushing up, extend one hand to the sky. Watch that hand with your eyes. Repeat, and reach up with the other arm. To make it more challenging, hold dumbbells. To make it easier, just put your hands on a sturdy, elevated surface like a table or bench." Complete five reps or more on each side.
3. Jumping Jacks
According to MuscleClass, jumping jacks come with a whole host of benefits. Jumping jacks are a stellar cardio exercise, boosting the strength of your lungs and heart. In addition, this classic bodyweight move helps you sculpt stronger muscles, enhance your coordination, and aid with your weight loss efforts.
To begin jumping jacks, you'll stand tall with your feet planted together on the ground. Your hands should be by the sides of your body. Then, quickly jump up as you bring both arms overhead and bring your feet out. Right after you jump your feet out, jump them back into the position you started in while at the same time bringing your arms back down. Perform jumping jacks for 20 seconds or more.