Love handles are the common trouble spots and the most stubborn area for both men and women. They are often referred to as abdominal fat, belly fat, muffin top, or beer gut.
Regional fat storage has a lot to do with diet, lifestyle and overall body fat level. Hormonal control of estrogen, insulin, and cortisol plays the most important roles. It will take at least a chapter if not a whole book to explain all these. Simply put, you have to find ways to reduce estrogen to normal level, become more insulin sensitive and reduce stress hormone cortisol.
With this in mind, the overall strategy in exercise and training to perform short, intense training sessions to counteract muscle-wasting and cortisol-generating effects. That means to avoid long duration cardio and extended weight lifting sessions.
While we can’t spot reduce fat storage, we can target-train certain muscle groups. Abdominal curls focuses on the front side your core, or the most coveted 6 packs abs. Lean and sculpted inner and exterior oblique muscles help you look ripped from the diagonal and side directions for a 3-D look. I would avoid doing too much side-bend exercise as many people do. It will thicken your lateral muscles and make you look “wider.”
There are some unique exercises you can do to target your abdominal and oblique muscles. If your fitness level is good, some of the most effective abs and oblique exercises are hanging leg raise and oblique twist, decline bench abs curl and twist, weighted cable crunches and oblique twist.
It usually works best doing 15 to 25 rep range and performing several different exercises back to back or in a circuit training fashion. If you’re starting out, try 6 to 12 repetitions for one exercise at a time. Make sure your form is correct and you should feel the muscle contraction or squeezing in each repetition instead of merely going through the movements.
You have to reduce overall body fat level by creating negative calories strategically to shrink your muffin top and get rid of love handles and belly fat. Managing the three key hormones is most critical by doing short yet intense strength training and cardio exercise to build the muscles and burn the fat.
There are many different training programs and routines depending on your level of fitness, conditioning and how much fat (or weight) you want to lose, your availability.
As a general guideline, one can achieve decent results by doing 3 strength training sessions a week for 45 minutes. Adding intense interval cardio training for 15 minutes at the end of each strength training sessions or 2 interval cardio sessions for 30 minutes on separate days would definitely accelerate fat loss.
Again, you have to evaluate how you feel, your progress and your time availability. Overtraining will create stress hormone cortisol causing more fat storage than fat burning. You’re more prone to fatigue and injuries.
Watch the best and most effective exercise to get rid of love handles and back fat:
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