If you’ve ever had success losing weight, you’re probably acutely familiar with the other side of this coin: the fat that just holds on no matter what you do. Can’t seem to get rid of that paunch? Read on to learn how to lose stubborn belly fat with these three strategies.
1. Intermittent Fasting
This strategy for losing stubborn belly fat works by tricking the body into developing a more efficient metabolism. Essentially, going longer periods in between meals – roughly 12 to 18 hours – occasionally helps the body to burn more fat by inhibiting a-2 receptors and activating b-2 receptors.
B-2 receptors are the ones that signal to your body that it’s time to burn fat, as opposed to a-2 receptors, which are triggered in order to hold onto fat deposits. Some areas of the body have more of these types of receptors than others. Stubborn belly fat, unsurprisingly, tends to be home to far more a-2 receptors than b-2 receptors – hence the trouble with losing weight in that area.
As you fast, the insulin levels in your body drop, which ultimately activates the b-2 receptors to start burning fat. Thus, when you eat again, the body is prepared to burn the calories that you consume rather than hold onto them. Eating in cycles, in terms of calories and macronutrients, thus primes your body to process at its best when you do consume food.
2. High Intensity Interval Training
When it comes to busting fat with exercise, high intensity interval training is the best way to lose stubborn belly fat. This is because interval training actually burns more calories per unit of time than a steady pace workout. High intensity interval training, also known as HIIT, is also extremely beneficial for increasing insulin sensitivity and glucose tolerance.
These two factors are known to play a major role in the difficulty associated with losing weight, so managing them with high intensity interval training might just give your body the boost it needs to beat that stubborn belly fat.
Finally, although high intensity interval training involves extremely difficult pushes of 100% effort, these types of workouts tend to be perceived as easier since they’re shorter and come with built-in breaks. So if you find that long, steady time-sinks of workouts aren’t getting rid of the belly fat, try throwing in some high intensity interval training, such as sprints or supersets with weights.
3. Caffeine with Fasting and Exercise
Caffeine is a thermogenic, meaning that it speeds up your metabolism to help you use more calories as a part of both daily function and when you exercise. If fasting and exercise don’t bust through that stubborn belly fat on their own, try adding in 200mg caffeine per day with your workout, up to 600mg per day if you typically consume a lot of caffeine (via coffee, tea, or energy drinks) and already have a tolerance for it.
Have you had success with overcoming plateaus to lose weight? Share your tips for how to lose stubborn belly fat in the comments section below!