Use win­ter to burn off those ex­tra ki­los

The Sunday Independent - - News - VIWE NDONGENI

IT’S no se­cret that los­ing weight is not as easy as it is to gain weight.

With win­ter in full swing, many peo­ple rel­ish the cold days as it is easy to layer their clothes to hide ex­cess fat, es­pe­cially around the waist­line. But those who ex­er­cise of­ten use this time of the year to tar­get the stub­born belly fat – oth­er­wise know as a “muf­fin top”.

Rushda Moosajee, 33, a per­sonal trainer and owner of the Glow, a women’s-only gym in Cape Town, says belly fat is one of the tough­est ar­eas to tackle as it re­quires more than just ex­er­cise to ban­ish.

“It’s more about what you eat than what type of ex­er­cise you per­fect. If the com­bi­na­tion of food and ex­er­cise can be mas­tered, the re­sults will speak for them­selves,” says Moosajee.

A struc­tured eat­ing plan of con­trolled calo­ries will re­sult in grad­ual loss of fat over time. She sug­gests cut­ting out pro­cessed foods.

“Go back to ba­sics: eat your mi­cronu­tri­ents, fats and car­bo­hy­drates as they were in­tended by God. Keep it clean and sim­ple. En­joy real food. Eat­ing healthily is fun and ex­cit­ing. Over the years hu­mans have com­pli­cated food and drink. Drink plenty of wa­ter, avoid any liq­uids that are not wa­ter, and cut out sug­ars.”

Moosajee sug­gests eat­ing lean pro­tein at ev­ery meal, to keep you fuller for longer and help add mus­cle.

“We lose mus­cle as we age and we need to keep our bod­ies strong and pre­vent us from fall­ing apart.”

She ad­vises load­ing up on greens and try­ing to in­cor­po­rate spinach, green beans, broc­coli, as­para­gus and Brus­sels sprouts into your daily meals.

When it comes to ex­er­cis­ing, per­sonal trainer and fit­ness coach Romeo Jac­ques Brand says the best way to get a toned tummy is to en­sure that you do core ex­er­cises. The fol­low­ing ex­er­cises may help you achieve good re­sults:

Plank­ing: this is an isometric core strength ex­er­cise that in­volves main­tain­ing a po­si­tion sim­i­lar to a push-up for the max­i­mum pos­si­ble time. With this move you strengthen the core mus­cles. You can in­crease the time to do it as you de­velop strength.

Side planks: although this ex­er­cise may seem like it is work­ing the arms, side planks are also great for the belly be­cause your belly mus­cles stay up­right, so you’ll def­i­nitely feel the core work im­me­di­ately or a day af­ter.

Spi­der planks: this ex­er­cise starts in a tra­di­tional plank po­si­tion with your fore­arms on the ground and your body per­fectly straight. Bring your right knee for­ward to­wards your right el­bow, then re­turn to the plank po­si­tion. It may take a lit­tle more pa­tience to master.

Box­ing: this ex­er­cise is a good full­body work­out. It covers all body ar­eas and pro­vides a use­ful work­out which is a bal­ance be­tween car­dio and re­sis­tance train­ing, which is ben­e­fi­cial to the core mus­cles.

Plate rope ex­er­cises: these are a must as they help de­velop strength, es­pe­cially in the core and shoul­ders.

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