Battling the bulge is no easy task, particularly during the holiday season.
Belly fat contributes to a number of conditions, besides the obvious- tight jeans and that disturbing reflection in the mirror staring back at you.
Excess abdominal fat can contribute to Heart Disease, Osteoporosis, Diabetes, High Blood Pressure, PCOS, and even Depression.
Regular ‘lifestyle’ diet and exercise should be practiced to minimize excess fat (everywhere) and maintain good health, but since we’re always looking for a quick and easy fix, I thought I would share one of my favorite, year-round, pastime exercises. I say pastime because there’s no gym, equipment, or space needed!
You can do it in the car while you’re driving, stuck in traffic, sitting at your desk at work, watching television, sitting in bed reading a book… you can do it ANYWHERE at ANYTIME! It may sound silly but it actually happens to be one of the most effective techniques for a flatter tummy!
Tuck In That Gut!
3 Benefits to Sucking in Your Stomach:
Burn Calories: Sucking in your stomach for 10-15 seconds is equivalent to 1 sit-up which can burn as much as 27 calories. Doesn’t seem like much, but added up over the course of the day… it could mean a lot!
Tighten Abdominal Muscles: Also known as The Stomach Vacuum exercise, sucking your stomach in will not only strengthen the abdominal muscles and work on that 6 pack that lies beneath, but it can shrink your waistline by 2-4 inches in just under a month- when practiced consistently!
Correct Your Posture: The transverse abdominis is the deepest of the stomach muscles. Responsible for stabilizing the trunk and pelvic stability. When picking up objects, for example, it is the first of this muscle group to be called into action. When you suck your stomach in, it forces these muscles to contract and pull on your spine; a girdle effect if you will.
How to Exercise It:
Begin with regular breathing. When you are ready, on the out-breath, tuck your stomach in; just enough that you are able to breathe normally. Hold it for 10-15 seconds. Rest for 10 seconds and repeat. 10-15 reps, 3-5 days a week.
If you’ve done it right… you will definitely feel the burn! Eventually you should get to the point where you are practicing it all the time without even noticing. 😉
*Note: You may practice this exercise while standing, sitting, or lying down. Do what feels most comfortable to you.