Siobhan Byrne: Problem areas in the spotlight
Strength training should be combined with a clean eating plan to help tone muscles
One of the most frequent questions I'm asked as a trainer, is how to target specific problem areas. I'll start this week's article by reminding you that it is not possible to spot reduce an area and that body fat reduction happens in predetermined areas that we really have no control over.
As you will be aware, most of the problem areas tend to be around the hips, bottom, thighs, tummy and back of the arms. That's not to say that you may not suffer excess amounts of fat in other areas, like above the knees or side of chest or even back, but these are the most prevalent.
Strength training will work great for targeting these areas. But be aware, if you don't control your eating habits by developing a clean eating plan, which includes consistency in training, you will not really see the results that you want. After all, if it was easy everyone would be in great shape.
All that aside, if we don't work the muscles in these areas, the specific area can look softer and more flabby. The classic example of this is the dreaded bingo wings where the skin and fat can hang down. By developing the muscle, you will be able to achieve a more toned look, so the area looks firmer and less flabby.
It's good to note that the more muscles you have in the body the more calories you burn while resting, which is great news for fat loss. It's also important to know that if you go down the route of dieting without training, the problem areas will remain flabby, even if somewhat slimmer than before. By keeping your training and clean eating food plan consistent you will eventually achieve your goals.
Target problem areas
Do each exercise 12 times before moving on to the next one. When you have completed each exercise, that is one set. Catch your breath before moving on to the next set, and do three to four sets, three to four times a week
Floor dips (For triceps)
1/ Start by sitting on the floor with your hands behind you, fingers pointing toward your feet and feet flat on the floor.
2/ Lift your hips off the ground so your weight is on your hands and on your feet.
3/ Dip down towards the ground, bending at the elbows, and return to the start straight-arm position. Your glutes should not touch the ground throughout this exercise.
Forward lunge (for legs)
1/ Start by standing in an upright position holding the dumbbells by your side with your arms straight.
2/ Then take a step forward into a lunge, dropping your back knee towards the floor, keeping the dumbbells by your side.
3/ Push off the front foot to return to start position and then alternate the legs.
Crunches on BOSU Ball (for abs)
1/ Start by lying on the BOSU Ball with your back supported and hands to the side of the head and your feet flat on the floor with knees bent.
2/ Slowly crunch up towards the ceiling and return back to start position.
Bent over row (for back)
1/ Start with dumbbells in both hands, bent over with your back straight and knees slightly bent. Your palms should be facing into you.
2/ Then simply row the arms up, keeping your elbows high and your forearms down. Then return back to start position.
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