If youâ€™ve spent enough time working out and keeping yourself lean, you know that the last bit of fat is the hardest to remove. Itâ€™s so stubborn that the task is damn near impossible sometimes, no matter how hard you push or how little you eat. It takes unwavering commitment, patience and perseverance to finally get the last ounce of fat to leave your body for good. But how?
Why Crunches Will get you Nowhere
If youâ€™ve got stubborn belly fat, the obvious exercise to do would be crunches, right? Not really. You may be up to 1,000 crunches a day and you still won’t see your ab muscles because itâ€™s surrounded by fat. The reason crunches aren’t effective is you canâ€™t spot reduce fat anywhere on your body by targeting a specific muscle group with exercise.
The only way to target specific fat deposits on the body is by surgically removing the fat via liposuction (invasive), or freezing the fat cells and inducing apoptosis using a machine, also known as cryolipolysis (non-invasive). If youâ€™re at the edge of your sanity and can’t wait, any of these methods work as advertised.
Consult with a skilled cosmetic surgeon for liposuction, and check out dermapure.com for more info on cryolipolysis. Be warned though, these procedures are expensive. Be patient, save your money and take the hard route. Itâ€™ll be worth it.
The Tale of Body Fat
Body fat follows a pattern: when you exercise and burn calories, the areas of your body where fat cell concentrations are the lowest will lean out first, while the areas with the highest concentrations of fat cells will lean out last. This process can’t be reversed or altered in any way. Itâ€™s just how the body operates.
Most men have fat deposits on their lower back, obliques and (front) lower abs. Women tend to store it on their thighs, butt and hips. These are the areas where the body stores all the excess fat because they have the highest amount fat cells. Think of fat cells as a magnet that attracts more and more fat. Once fat fills up a cell, itâ€™s a pain in the ass to get it out.
Thatâ€™s why crunches and other abdominal exercises tend to yield minimal results, at best, especially if youâ€™re eating more than what your body can burn. The reason behind this is that you need to lose fat all over your body first, before you can lose any fat on the stubborn areas. Your body won’t touch stubborn fat if it can still burn energy from other sources.
Do I Look Fat in these Genes?
This is a defense mechanism in our DNA, and has been in our genetics for thousands of years. Early man didn’t have fast food or 711 back in the day. He had to gather and hunt for his next meal. Sometimes, food would be so scarce that hunters wouldn’t eat for days, subsisting only on berries, roots and water.
They survived because their bodies became adept at storing excess energy from calories derived from food. The body assimilates all nutrients during digestion, and the excess is converted into fat for storage. Fat is more energy dense than carbs and protein combined, so the body clings to it for use during periods when thereâ€™s no food.
You Are What (and How Much) You Eat
A lot of this hinges on food. It’s not necessarily what you eat, it’s how much you eat. Our bodies are always in flux: weâ€™re either in the â€œfastedâ€ state or the â€œfedâ€ state. The fasted state is basically when youâ€™ve gone for 8 hours or more without any food intake, while the fed state is after youâ€™ve eaten a meal.
During the fasted state, insulin levels are low and the body is forced to use fat for energy. When you eat and enter the fed state, the body releases insulin to shuttle nutrients to the bloodstream. This can last for hours, depending on what you ate. No fat burning occurs during the fed state.
You Need to Fast
In order to get your body to use fat as it’s primary fuel source, you need to spend more time in the fasted state and do your workouts on an empty stomach. Fasted training forces your body to burn more fat for energy (because it has no choice), and this strategy has been proven to melt away stubborn fat faster than training an hour or more after a meal.
You naturally enter the fasted state during sleep, so try to do your workouts in the morning or before lunch to get more of the fat out of their cells to be burned. The longer you are in the fasted state, the more fat will be used up. There are a lot of articles on fasting and intermittent fasting you can check out online. Be sure to do your research and find what best works for you.