When Fitness Meets Fashion
Many of us decide to get into shape in order to look better. For example, many people hop on a training regime in order to get a bikini body for upcoming holidays. Others might want to get rid of a saggy belly or bingo arms. This is when fashion leads the cause. However, spot reduction is not something that works very well. Sometimes, working the legs to lose the spare tyre around your belly might work. Here’s how you go about doing it.
The legs are one of the biggest muscle groups of the body. When you work out your quadriceps by doing squats, you target more than these muscles – you end up working your whole body. This is because while squatting, you need to keep you balance throughout the exercise. In addition, you have a heavy load on your shoulders which raises your centre of gravity and makes you even more unstable. Finally, your upper body must be rigid in order to be able to transmit the power through your legs. Imagine trying to push a glass of water with a piece of tissue paper – the tissue just folds. Push the glass with a pencil and it moves.
Once you’ve got those legs fired up, either with the squat which also involves the upper body, or with other compound leg exercises like the leg press, you have activated one of your biggest muscle groups and burnt a large amount of calories. Your body will release growth hormones to repair the damaged muscle cells in your quads and make them stronger. If you have worked any smaller muscles recently, such as the triceps, they will benefit too from the growth hormones in the bloodstream. In other words, by working a large muscle group, you can target and grow smaller muscles.
Muscles are the powerhouse of the body; they are also a fat-burning oven. By working large muscle groups, you activate these muscles and cause them to quickly burn calories in order to produce the power asked from them. The more powerful they are, the more calories or energy they demand from you. The legs are a good place to start but the back is also made up of large muscle groups. Do a few heavy back rows in an intense session and you will feel it.
An extra bonus you get by working out like this and using up your calories is that you build muscles even more. Squat and row and you develop muscles in your legs and back which will allow you to lift even heavier next time and burn more calories. Actually, you get two bonus points, the second being that your muscles continue burning calories long after your training is over and keep your metabolism rate elevated. That means you could literally be sleeping and yet burning calories. This is in stark contrast to cardio training where you only burn calories while you are active. There is no sleeping on the job there!
Burning a lot of calories through a clever workout is half the battle. You now need to eat cleanly and not fill your body with fat which will go straight onto your belly or hips, depending on your body type. Fill up your depleted energy level with some simple carbohydrates such as rice and potatoes. Even better are brown rice, brown pasta and sweet potatoes. A large amount of proteins is also essential to grow these muscles so pile on the lean meat from chicken and beef and don’t shy away from tuna. Pulses are also excellent for carbohydrates and proteins.
[box]Sometimes, the direct way to a flat stomach with crunches after crunches in 50-reps sets does not always work. An indirect approach by working your legs or back to lose this belly fat could work. You would then achieve your fashion objectives and look great in any slim-fit blue shirt for men or even better without. Enjoy your new look and your new fitness level, 2-in-1 benefits in one stroke![/box]