Burn that belly fat

Burn that belly fat

Interval and strength training combined are far better at ramping up your metabolism and burning off belly fat. — Courtesy photo

Vahdaneh Vahid

Interval and strength training combined are far better at ramping up your metabolism and burning off belly fat than steady-state aerobic exercise. During steady-state aerobic exercise the body releases glucocorticoids. These stress hormones are catabolic, meaning a breakdown of the human body, including muscle, tissue and bone.

As little as 10-20 minutes of high-intensity interval training (HIIT) is less likely to put your body to a catabolic state. The same is true of resistance training, which will push you toward an anabolic state, meaning the body is making lean healthy muscle instead of breaking it down.

Resistance training is also linked to metabolic benefits such as better insulin sensitivity. One of the main reasons we store fat around our midsection is high insulin levels in our body.

Bodyweight exercises can be a warm up or the main part of your workout. If you prefer lifting weights try strength-training supersets to build muscle, or an HIIT routine to burn fat in a short time. Mix up your training days, alternating resistance training with HIIT.

You should be in the gym for no more than 40 minutes, three to four times per week. You should always feel good before, during and after an exercise program. If you are low on energy, chances are you need a rest day. Use the motto: “Train don’t drain.”

It is always best to do what you enjoy and can stick to. If you enjoy being outside you can jog, run, sprint or skip. At the gym, you can use a rowing machine, cross-trainer or swimming pool. You can even climb the stairs in your apartment and get the lift back down as your recovery.

My rules to interval training are always warm up for three to six minutes, and set the intensity scale according to how you feel during each round, level 1 being super easy, level 10 being extremely hard.

High intensity: Perform one minute as fast and as hard as you can (level 9 or 10)
Slow to moderate intensity: Completely slow down the pace for one to four minutes to allow your body to recover and be able to push hard again (level 3-5 intensity)
Therefore, one round will last two to five minutes depending on your fitness level. Total workout time should be no more than 30 minutes. — Al Arabiya News