It may also be called “Pot Belly,” “Jelly Roll” or “Muffin Top.” While drinking too much beer can certainly lead to “Beer Belly,” it can also be caused by screaming “Git In My Belly” whenever you see junk food in front of you!
Even if you don’t drink beer, you can easily start to gain body fat in your stomach if you are not careful. That’s where men store much of their excess calories. (By the way, if you do drink beer or any type of alcohol, be aware that it’s 7 empty calories per gram, almost as much as fat, and your body will always use your alcohol stores before your fat stores for energy, thus making it even harder to burn your fat off.) And, it’s definitely very important to get excess belly fat under control, as excess belly fat in the midsection is linked to a variety of health problems like type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, and cardiovascular diseases.
I always say the belly fat area is like a bad in-law, it’s the first to arrive and the last to leave, so stay focused and committed on these following exercises in conjunction with your cardio to get rid of the beer belly, and you’ll be on your way to six pack abs!
1) Lie on your back on the floor or a bench with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor, and your hands behind head. Keep your elbows back and out of sight. Your Head should be in a neutral position with a space between your chin and your chest.
2) Leading with the chin and chest towards the ceiling, contract your abdominal and raise your rear shoulders off the floor or the bench.
3. Return back to your original starting position. Remember to keep your head and back in a neutral position.
1) Start by lying on your back with your hands clasped behind the back of your neck and your thighs bent 90 degrees at your hip with feet off the ground and toes pointing towards the ceiling.
2. Simultaneously curl your right shoulder and left knee up and in towards the center of your body until your elbow and knee touch. Extend your leg back and return to the starting position along with your elbow to reset and then repeat with the other side.
3. Continuously repeat this pattern of kicking your legs in and out while your opposite side elbow moves towards your opposite knee, doing at least 30 repetitions.
1) Start off by getting on your hands and knees in a push-up type position. Raise your knees up off the floor so that only your hands and feet are touching the floor and supporting your weight.
2. Keeping your abs tight and your trunk parallel bring one knee in towards your chest. Be sure not to raise your butt up too much putting your body in a “V” shape. Try to keep it straight and parallel to the floor.
3. Return the foot back to the starting position and repeat with the other leg, doing at least 30 repetitions.
1) Start off by getting on your hands and knees, keeping your head in a neutral position.
2) In a Drawing-in-maneuver, suck your belly button in towards your spine.
3) Hold in for 10 seconds then release.
4) Repeat for 15 repetitions.
Some additional tips for getting rid of and preventing Beer Belly:
-As mentioned, limit your alcohol intake. The CDC recommends up to 1 drink per day for woman, and 2 drinks for men. A drink is defined as 12 ounces of beer, or 5 ounces of wine, or 1.5 ounces or a “shot” of 80 proof distilled spirits or liquor (e.g., gin, rum, vodka, or whiskey).
-Consume no more than 30% of your total daily calories from fat (with no more than 10% of that coming from the bad fats which are trans and saturated).
-Consume no more than 100 calories a day from sugar. I’m talking about simple carbohydrates like table sugars, the bad stuff. Always remember, your body needs a certain amount of the good fats like polyunsaturated and monounsaturated, but it doesn’t need simple sugar. It’s that simple!
Jack Witt, MS, CPT
Fitness and Health Coach