Sure it’s cute. Your special someone calls your donut roll/muffin tops, love handles, but it doesn’t make you any less self-conscious or embarrassed, no matter what your gender. Love handles are those rolls of excess fat at the side around your waist. They lap over the top of your jeans and make clothing fit uncomfortably tight around the middle. Getting rid of them can help restore your confidence, while you tone the rest of your body at the same time. Here are some workouts to get rid of love handles and some other helpful tips.
Losing weight is the first place to start.
Since love handles are a deposit of fat around the middle, it only makes sense that you need to start with a healthy diet. Cut out sugar, skip those processed foods and focus on whole food. Make sure your diet has plenty of healthy fat. One study showed that people who ate an avocado a day, which is loaded with healthy fat, not only weighed less, but had less abdominal fat. Getting rid of love handles means getting rid of abdominal fat! Include healthy fiber in your diet, too. Switch out simple carbs for complex ones and make sure you have adequate protein.
Include a program of exercise, which focuses on core exercises. You can’t get rid of fat in just one area by using spot exercises, but you can tone the muscles in that area. Kettlebells and core exercise holding weights that involve bending, twisting at the waist and lifting help. Wood choppers, Russian twists, side plank hip lifts and bicycle crunches help tighten the muscles around the middle to whittle down the appearance of love handles.
Cut the stress.
Too much cortisol, a stress hormone, can cause love handles and accumulation of abdominal fat. One thing that is a true stress buster is exercise—any type of exercise! Get moving. Go for a walk when you’re stressed out and make it brisk. Run up and down stairs! Learn to avoid stress with deep breathing exercises or meditation. Find ways to make your life less stressful. Get up a half hour earlier so you don’t have panic before going to work, accept that some things are out of your control and that you can control whether you let someone else’s bad day become yours.
- Sleep deprivation adds to those donut rolls around your waist. Get adequate sleep at night and you’ll find the battle of the bulge is easier. You’ll have more energy and resolve to work on making it better.
- You can’t change getting older, but you don’t have to fall into the trap of more belly fat as you age. Get active and stay active so you never have to worry about belly fat of any type again.
- Drink plenty of water. Cut out those sugary drinks, including diet sodas. Studies show diet colas add extra inches around the middle! If you drink many soft drinks, just switching to water will make a big difference.
- Improve your posture. Stand up straight and push your upper body toward the sky. You’ll feel it in the muscles on your side. While good posture won’t eliminate love handles, it will make them less obvious.