If you like to stay on top of your health and fitness, there are a few things you need to know. For example, do you have a somewhat stubborn and flabby abdominal area? If you’ve lost weight or been through a pregnancy, it’s entirely possible that you will. Listen up, because we spoke to an expert who came up with five bodybuilding exercises you can do to get rid of your “apron belly.” Yes, there is a name for it and you can absolutely take steps to work in this area.
Keep reading to learn more, and then don’t miss Get rid of hanging belly fat with this cardio and strength workout.
What is an apron belly?
Let’s learn exactly what an apron belly, also called a panniculus, is. Eat this, not that! speak with Mike Bohl, MD, MPH, ALM, a member of our medical expert board and certified personal trainer and nutrition coach who helped develop the body program at Ro. Dr. Bohl describes this condition as an extra layer of fat that hangs from the belly above the waistline.
“The two main causes of the development of an apron belly are pregnancy and weight gain. Rapid weight loss can also cause the formation of a panniculus, as the skin may not retract as quickly as the fat. has been lost, so that the excess skin hangs down from the abdomen,” says Dr. Bohl.
How can weight training help you get rid of an apron belly?
If you have an apron belly, your first thought may be, okay, I’m going to exercise and lose weight in that area. Unfortunately, it’s not possible to target weight loss to a specific area of your body, known as “spot reduction.” What happens instead is that weight loss happens throughout your body, not just in one particular area. Therefore, you cannot focus on exercises to specifically treat an apron belly, but you can lose body fat everywhere, including your belly.
“Exercises that cause you to burn more calories than you consume in a day will help you lose weight overall, which may eventually reduce the ‘apron tummy.’ In some cases, an apron tummy may go away completely on its own once the fat is lost and the skin is able to retract. However, in some cases the excess skin does not retract and a surgical procedure called a panniculectomy can be done to remove it,” points out the Dr Bohl.
Since losing weight overall is essential if you want to shrink your apron belly, it’s more effective to perform strength exercises, choosing those that burn the most calories.
Dr. Bowl recommends: “This can usually be done by working larger muscle groups or by working multiple muscle groups at the same time. Doing cardio exercises can also aid weight loss, and it’s important to follow a diet as well so that you are consuming fewer calories than you burn.”
Creating a calorie deficit is key here, as well as consistency. You may reach your goal before you know it!
These are the best exercises to get rid of an apron belly.
Here are the strength exercises Dr. Bohl suggests adding to your routine. Doing them regularly will give many muscle groups a solid workout at once and can help you get rid of your apron belly for good.
This classic exercise targets your upper body but also forces you to contract muscles throughout your body. According to the NASM, to prepare for push-ups, you’ll start with your hands just outside of your shoulder distance at your chest. Keep your feet hip-width apart. Bring your belly button in and maintain a tight core. Then lower your body to the ground so that it is almost touching. Hands flat, lift off the floor until your arms are straight.
Pull-ups also target your upper body, including many back and arm muscles. To set yourself up, hold onto a pull-up bar. Pull yourself up until your chin is slightly above the bar. Then, with control, lower until both arms are fully extended.
Squats, in addition to lunges and deadlifts, really work the big muscles in your legs and glutes. To set up, place your feet a little wider than hip-width distance apart. Bend your hips back, keep your chest high, and lower into a squat until your thighs are parallel to the floor. Then, push through your heels to return to a standing position.
There are different ways to perform deadlifts. You can work out with a kettlebell, a barbell, or a set of dumbbells. If you opt for dumbbells, PureGym asks you to have one in each hand, making sure your palms face inward. Keep your core tight and your spine neutral to establish some tension. Then, tilt your hips back and bring the dumbbells down your legs toward the floor. Once you reach the bottom of the movement, press down on your feet to return to a standing position.
Finally, it’s time to wrap up these exercises to shrink your apron belly with lunges. When it comes to lunges, there are so many variations you can do, from forward lunges to jump lunges, reverse lunges to side lunges.
If you’re doing a forward lunge, bring one leg forward and lower into a lunge, lowering your back leg toward the floor. Be sure to maintain solid form and posture throughout this exercise. Press on your heel to come up. Then bring your back leg forward to lunge to the other side.