“Who has the time, bro?”
“It’s the indicator of prosperity! What are you saying?!”
“I will join the gym next week, for sure! Arre, pakka!”
“Screw dieting, I have to work extra hours, get me that chocolate brownie you were talking about.”
One cannot really blame anyone these days for getting fat. We lead busy, busy lives. Demanding work schedules and competitive environments to make you push yourselves to do better professionally. And, there is nothing wrong with that. You have to make a living, you have to achieve success that you dream of.
The immediate fruits of your efforts are visible in your promotion and appreciation from your bosses, the byproduct is slyly accumulating around your waist. You realize it when your pants get tighter and tighter until you cannot wear them anymore, and then there’s the stage where it actually becomes round and spills around the top of your jeans.
I know that working out for 2 hours every day in the gym is not really possible for us mortals, we just do not have the time or the energy. But there are ways – simple ones you can incorporate in your life to cut down on your belly fat.
And these tips are not compromises at all.
They are lifestyle changes that will cut your belly fat and if you keep at it long enough, they will leave you fit and healthy.
1. Deep and slow breathing in the morning and every time you find a few seconds.
Even Narendra Modi swears by it, and he sleeps for only 4 hours! Stress is one of the factors that aids accumulation of fat. Deep and slow breathing reduces stress substantially. Practice it in the morning and every time you feel even the slightest of stress.
The simplest technique I can put across is –
1. Inhale – breathe in – for a count of 4.
2. Hold it in for a count of 4.
3. Exhale for a count of 4.
4. Pause again for a count of 4 before breathing in.
2. Get a good sleep cycle and adhere to it
And I DO NOT mean getting the sufficient 7-8 hours of sleep. That’s all good and awesome, but you need to incorporate a good sleep cycle, a good sleep schedule.That means waking up very early and going to sleep very early too.
Going to sleep late is a contributor to that belly fat.
3. Use olive oil instead of regular oil
Olive oil has chemicals that signal your brain that you are full. Also, olive oil is healthier than sunflower or groundnut oil. Your diet needs an oil change.
4. Dinner before 6pm (Yes! 6pm, latest!)
No food after 6 pm at all. We do not know this, but sleeping right after you eat your dinner at 10 pm leads to accumulation of fat. Because you are asleep, there is no reason for your body to use that dinner for anything else.
When you eat dinner at 6 pm, there is still time before you go to sleep and the body doesn’t convert all your dinner into fat, because you are still awake and your metabolism is better than when you are asleep.
5. Work hard. Party moderately.
Do not party hard. Partying hard means more alcohol and starters. More alcohol means higher blood sugar levels. That means more stress on your liver.
More sugar means more fat. Party in moderation. Chill out at these parties rather than getting completely sloshed.
6. Try lifting weights, only 2 times a week, though.
Lifting weights is good. It builds lean muscle, which burns fat the fastest. but do not overdo it. Because weight lifting requires time for recovery. It needs more sleep too. Do it twice or thrice in a week with a couple of days in between for your muscles to repair and build.
7. Eat dark chocolate.
Dark chocolate contains zinc, which in turn is used to produce Leptin, that regulates fat storage.
Eat it to bust fat around your tummy.
8. Choose an exercise that makes you feel good
Do not exercise for the heck of it, it will get boring in a while – FOR SURE. Work out with exercises you love. Some people love swimming, some love Yoga, some people love Zumba.
Dancing, boxing, it can be anything. Find your love, and suddenly it is fun and not exercise anymore.
9. Make your own meals, do not eat out!
Cook your own food. Please do not eat out, at least on the weekdays you work.Making your meals gives you total control on what you eat. If you live with your parents, it’s even better – they will love that you want healthy food.
Avoid eating out.
10. Drink milk
Milk contains calcium – a fat buster. More calcium even prevents fats from forming. Drink milk.
11. Drink your veggies and eat your fruits.
Because fruits contain a lot of sugar. They contain a lot of fibre too. When you eat a lot of fruit, this sugar in form of fructose is slowly absorbed, because of the fibre.When you juice it, you are drinking all this sugar with no buffer. This sugar may be converted into fat later. That’s why, always eat your fruits, do not juice them.
As for vegetables, they have a lot of nutrients that are lost in cooking them. Juice them for getting the best out of them.
12. Work standing up, don’t sit down.
Sitting down shuts down the production of enzymes that break down fat. Standing up is almost like a workout in itself.
It increases blood circulation and metabolism. Alternate standing up and sitting down at work if you are not entirely comfortable standing up the whole time.
13. Apple cider vinegar/ Lemon juice honey – whichever you like.
Apple cider vinegar contains acetic acid that helps increase your metabolism. Lemon juice with honey, is also good for you because lemon contains vitamin C that is responsible for making carnitine, a compound used by the body to turn fat into fuel.
Drink either of them early in the morning to begin your day by busting some fat.
14. Drop and do exercises randomly, even if it is for just 10 seconds.
Any amount of exercise is better than no exercise at all. And if you have 15 seconds in surplus after you have filled your water bottle at the cooler and no one is around, drop down and do 10 push ups. That’s all.
It’s sneaky and healthy at the same time.
15. Incorporate more protein and fibre into your diet and cut the carbs.
Protein builds muscles, which are the single most efficient reason behind burning your fat. Nothing else your body needs to burn fat. You need to have more proteins to build this muscle and maintain it. We don’t realize this, but when you do not have enough proteins in your diet, your muscles are stripped away.
Cut down on the carbs if you have a desk job. And eating more fibre means your body takes in less fat from the food you eat.
16. Carry dry fruits with you all the times.
Get a fanny pack, especially for carrying dry fruits like cashews, raisins and almonds. And whenever you feel a craving to eat a lot between meals, just munch on them. They are healthy, nutritious and very filling too.
Just do not eat the salted versions of them. Eat them plain and avoid snacking on junk food!
I hope you get fit and healthy by following these steps.
Because a healthier you is ALWAYS a better you.