One of the most common fitness myths is the idea of spot reduction. Spot reduction means decreasing body fat in one area of the body by repeatedly stimulating that area only. The marketing of products for the abdominals, thighs, and buttocks compose the majority of spot reduction fitness gimmicks. Television and Internet are continuously flooded with new products claiming their use to be the only thing you need to get your body in the condition you desire. Some of these products can be helpful when used in conjunction with proper nutrition as well as supplemental exercise.
Let’s visit the main area of concern for most people, the abdominal area. Many people would list this area as their problem area or the area they would most like to improve. Six pack abs and flat stomachs grace the covers of all types of magazines. Only training the abdominals will not produce these desired results. The abdominals run from the thorax to the pelvis and consist of 5 muscle groups. These 5 groups are the external obliques, internal obliques, transverse abdominis, rectus abdominis, and the pyramidalis. These muscles are extremely important in core stabilization as well as posture, so they should be trained. However, training the abdominal muscles should be part of a well balanced full body exercise routine.
Most goals are geared towards losing body fat, and the human body loses this fat as a whole and not one part at a time. The places where your body holds fat are genetically pre-determined. Some people may always have a flat stomach and larger arms while others may always have toned arms and a large stomach. In general, the place where you first started to gain extra body fat will be the last place it decreases, and the most recent places you have gained body fat will be the first to decrease. For women, they tend to lose body fat first in the arms or legs and last in the abdomen. Men are the same in that the abdomen is usually the last place for the fat to disappear from. Decreasing your overall body fat with proper exercise and nutrition is the only way to affect these problem areas.
Another thing to keep in mind is that the closer you become to your body fat goals, the more hard work you will have to put in with your fitness. In order to diminish those pesky fat cells in the places you want the most, dedication and discipline are required. It is important to keep your muscles strong so do train them individually to develop strength and power and keep your cardiovascular fitness and nutrition in the forefront of your mind while adhering to your body fat loss program.