If I had a dollar for every time someone asked me, “how to I lose weight here?” (pointing to an area of their body they wish were smaller), I would be very rich. Thanks to magazines in grocery lanes that have headlines like, “Lose your belly in just 10 days!” many believe there are specific exercises that can be done or foods that can be eaten to target weight loss in specific areas, but is this accurate?
Despite the range of products and programs that claim to target body fat on one specific area of the body, the truth is, you can’t burn body fat from just one area at a time. When you lose weight, the fat loss occurs throughout your entire body at once.
Your body stores fat to use as fuel, and when you begin a weight loss program, your body burns that fat from all areas of your body so that one portion isn’t depleted. That’s because fat also acts as your body’s insulation, and your body doesn’t want to leave one area imbalanced.
Your body decides which area it wants to take fuel from and what proportion it will take. Years ago, when I was obese (nearly 40 pounds heavier than I am today), I had much more upstairs (yes hard to believe, but it’s true I had breasts 🙂 ). My body decided to take fat stores throughout my body, but mainly from my upper body – a little too much if you ask me!
Working a specific area will build muscle in that area, but without aerobic exercise, you’re still going to have a layer of fat over that muscle. A combination of aerobic and strength exercises can help you burn fat and tone your muscles.
The main thing we need to concern ourselves with is having a healthy balance between lean tissue and body fat. As a general rule of thumb, women should keep body fat under 20% and men under 15%. You’re shape is beautiful just the way God made you! Embrace your inner beauty and strength!