Spot Reduction - Myth Buster!

Do you remember Suzanne Somers “thigh master”? It pledged to help tighten and strengthen the thigh area which is a typical “trouble spot”, particularly for women. Well guess what? The idea of “spot reduction” is a myth. Spot reduction is simply not possible.

I often have clients request we do core exercises because they “want to get rid of belly fat” or they “want to get rid of love handles”. A lot of health magazines fill our minds with a false notion that by doing particular exercises targeting the abdominal region or the backside that we will have firmer abs or a more lifted seat. But what they are not addressing or informing the reader is that it is not possible to burn off fat from a particular region of the body by doing selective exercises focusing on that area. They are neglecting the most important factor: fat.

Exercises such a crunches or squats (targeting the abdominals and backside) will improve the tone and endurance of the muscles but they don’t burn fat.

There are several factors that will help reduce belly fat or reduce fat on those other trouble spots. One is exercises that elevate the heart rate and draw upon the body’s fat stores for energy. In addition to aerobic activity (or anaerobic activity such as High Intensity Interval Training), strength training will increase muscle - which in turn burns more calories. And the final factor is diet. Now of course there can be additional factors such as genetics or hormones but the message that I want to convey is that regular exercise that elevates your heart rate in conjunction with strength training and a sensible diet can eliminate excess body fat. This combination with have you looking and feeling great - just stick with it!

Have a great week!