It a slight misconception, doing situps do strengthen the muslces but the exercise alone won't burn enough fat to expose a six pack, even with crunches and leg raises.
If you want to trim the lower half then a cardio work out is required [also some light weights in conjunction with situps], such as walking, cross trainer, running or my personal favourite is swimming.
Also to achieve this you need to boost your metabolic rate, so eating little and often, having plenty of sleep, exercising in the morning, having a healthy breakfast[ never skip breakfast], slight increase in proteins to encourage lean muscle mass thus burn calories all help towards to getting your metabolic rate up and pumping, stay away if possible from fizzy drinks, if you smoke try to stop, avoid alcohol if you do drink then don't binge and just have the odd one until you have toned your stomach, after that you can do what you like
As for foods well you need a balanced healthy diet, keeping away from processed products and high fat, reduce your carbohydrate intake but don't stop them since you still need them for the energy value, increase your protein intake to feed your muscles to encourage lean muscle mass, no you won't become a body builder and try not to eat after 7pm at night since that is roughly the time your metabolic rate starts to fall.
Depending on your age, if you are in the under 30 age group then your metabolic rate should be naturally high it just needs a little smack in the rear end to do its job
I know that crunches and sit-ups can help with improving your stomach muscles and help lose lower belly fat, but are there any exercises that can be done to target your rib cage area? While I do have some lower belly fat, I really need some help trying to lose the fat in my rib cage area and tighten those muscles. Any advice would be appreciated..thanks.
Well if you can't eat process foods what other kinds are there besides meats and veggies, fruits?
most food is processed...and I'm not meaning fast foods...I know thats just pure fat & calories
I eat a bowl of wheaties mix few crush pecans or blueberrys/or a few strawberrys, after I exercise everymorn..the cereal is processed? So I should ''not ''eat that?
sometimes I have a bowl of Instant oatmeal, thats process too?
Have a light dinner..protein /fiber/ veggies.
close to the same for supper...but I have like a light low-fat yogart or fruit of some kind other than a bannana.
the yogart is processed too!
Cutting down on processed foods means you prepare the meals yourself from fresh produce and not have a meal you throw into a microwave which is pre made, these are usually high in salt and fat, and the healthier options are better but no way as good as making from fresh.
You can't avoid processed foods but you can limit them in your diet.
I wish people would read carefully what other people have written that way there isn't any confusion.
As for the stomach fat as BYF1 nicely summed up diet and cardio is the building block to a flat stomach.
Well I do eat some process foods, in moderation and most people do that who are trying to lose weight, this is not a perfect world....sure I would love to always eat the perfect meal, if I did I would not have a weight problem.
so I gain weight over the years probably eating way to much process foods, but I know that.
After yo yo dieting most of my life diet to diet swinging round like a monkey really lost as far as trying to lose weight ect,,ect,,.
So what I have did is get adivise from others(lot of good advise on these boards) I started exerciseing vigeriously about an hour each day, cardio/weights. watch what I eat portions wise ..and mostly keep a calorie count of what I do eat..no matter what the food is. prosessed or fresh.
I have lost most of my belly fat (still have a little) and I had a lot believe me... if a person don't overly consume what they eat keep there calories down each day they will lose and the belly fat too without exercise!!
it just helps you feel better and improves your system much faster and better if you do exercise.
the reason I say this is because theres some people that ''can not'' exercise via medical problems or just to over weight...(whatever)
but my point is you can eat some ''processed'' foods and still lose weight.
I sure did and I lost a lot of weight...almost 70lbs.
In my opinion if you go on a low calorie count and stay true to yourself each day you can and will lose weight including the belly fat...without exercising.
were all just to spoilled (tempted ''aghh that little bit wont hurt'' ect,ect,,) now days with foods and the convinance of everyday living.
the above poster is correct ,it is very Hard to lose weight for just the average person/or any person I should say..but thats what it takes hard work displine I don't care what any body says.
when losing bodyfat, stubburn fat around the midsestion especially the lower abs, obiques and lower back are usually the last places you will lose fat from if you a male as this is where most males hang on to the last bit of bodyfat due to genetics.
its also one of the first places that shows signs of body fat gain in men too.
for women it can be a bit different, often the hips, thighs, bum as well as stomach hang on to bodyfat the most. time, patience and persistance are the key to losing this stubburn fat in these areas.
obviously a good diet consisting of mostly natural food as possible that is balanced with regular meals, a cardio plan and weights/resistance training also help to speed up metabolism and minimise muscle loss and enhance fat loss.
Also, for those that can't "exercise" for medical reasons, there are still plenty of things that you can do.
Pilate's is an excellent option for lots of people that can't exercise "normally" it mainly involves lying on your back! Not much effort in that :-) It does take effort though and if you do it, you will love it.
I have a very bad knee so this makes it even difficult to go for walks, but by doing Pilate's I can lose weight and keep fit.
Teh Bottom Line is that to lose fat from anywhere you have to Burn more calories then you consume. That is the ONLY way to do it.
IF you do this by Exercising or eating less is really up to you. but a combination of both is best. Cutting down on Processed foods help because they digest rather quickly and you end up being hungrier sooner..thus you end up eating more.
Also the More Processes usually means the less nutrious.
The Only way to Spot reduce is through Liposuction. You just have to burn more then consumed and eventually it will come off from the area that you want it to.
Weight Loss can be Quick! But Fat Loss takes Time!