Take a good look in the mirror. Do you have a nice, small tight waistline or do you see a bulging, flabby midsection creeping over your belt? If your belly looks like it can soon apply for statehood then you had better set your sights on getting it under control a.s.a.p. Not just for vanity’s sake, although that idea certainly has merit (I mean who wants to be embarrassed at the beach) but for your health.
Even though many men need to lose their belly flub (over 60% of the population is now considered to be overweight) most guys don’t realize how dangerous their situation truly is. We will discuss briefly why you need to lose belly fat and even more importantly how to lose it quickly and permanently.
Basically that flub that torments you is basically two different kinds of fat. Subcutaneous which lies underneath the skin and has a tendency to jiggle (I hate that) and visceral which lies behind and around your internal organs. An overabundance of either is not good but the visceral fat is especially bad. If you have ever seen anyone with a potbelly that is rock hard you are seeing a prime example of visceral fat. That hard belly by the way is not a better fat belly to have as many folks believe since it leads directly to metabolic syndrome.
Metabolic syndrome is when you have at least two of these risk factors; high blood pressure, high triglycerides, low good cholesterol (HDL), high blood sugar and a waistline of 36 inches or greater. All of this greatly increases your chances of dying young from heart disease, stroke, diabetes and some forms of cancer. I don’t know about you but I’ll pass on the early death. I want to live, and I’m assuming you do too!
Ok, so we have established that having a gut is dangerous for our health and definitely does not attract women. We need some big changes but what is the best way to get it done?
Listed below are some simple concepts that if followed can go a long way to giving you a lean and long, healthy life.
- Eat Natural: All food programs are not right for every individual but most men will greatly improve their health and physique by focusing on lean proteins, lots of fresh veggies, some fruits and good fats such as nuts, all natural peanut butter, avocado and olive oil. Steer clear of anything that comes in a bag or box. Think about it, pasta and bread doesn’t grow on trees so unless it’s a once a week treat stay away from man-made starches and all artificial sugars.
- Eat Breakfast: Never skip! Plenty of protein will help you feel full and rev up your metabolism.
- Eat Often: Spread all these healthy foods over 5-6 small meals a day.
- Eat plenty of fiber: this is a little harder to do if you are skipping the cereals and breads as I told you to do so you’ll have to catch up with plenty of veggies, fruits, nuts and seeds.
- Drink Water: Drinking water doesn’t make your fat go away, but being dehydrated certainly will put a stop to it. How? Several things go wrong when you are not drinking enough; (1) your body will interpret too little fluid similarly to reduced food intake and will slow down your resting metabolic rate (how many calories you burn an hour) (2) your body utilizes your fluid levels as a means to help the regulation of body temperature. If not enough water is available your body will turn to its secondary source of temperature regulation, body fat! So your body will want to hoard the fat to insulate you, this is the opposite of what we want. (3) The less water you have the more water you retain which makes you feel and look heavier that what you are. (4) Being dehydrated can make you up to 30% weaker (not good for working out) and interferes with your body’s ability to metabolize the food you eat.
- Circuit Weight Training– 3-4 days a week of full body strength exercises done at a nice brisk pace will build power, strength, speed and get you lean and very fit. Besides the workouts can be a lot of fun!
Losing your belly and getting lean is not hard to understand but it is often difficult to follow the rules consistently in order to achieve a lean, rock solid, healthy midsection. Take encouragement however, if others do it than you can as well! Make a decision, commit and follow through. Don’t stop until you reach your goal!