I have a client who is 125 lbs with 25% body fat, she is toned and lean except for her mid section. We do Pilates ab series and other Pilates excercises, ab machines, crunches, full sit ups with weights, and we’ve gotten into hoola hooping, still this is where most of her problem area is. Are there any different things we can do? Or some dietary change that may help?
yours is a common problem, especially here in India where people have a sweet tooth. The solution to this problem have been the same since decades. doing excess abdominal exercises will have no effect on the body fat percentage.
the safest and the best way to target the belly fat is through leg workouts. age will not pose any difficulty in your case since the client has been working out hard under your guidance. the first and foremost exercise should be free barbell squats, not on the smith machine, followed by lunges and leg presses and so on.
the problem with aerobics is the same, you lose weight not fat.
second most important step is the diet, in fact this should be first.
right clean foods, no fad diets, proper supplementation with required antioxidants will give you sure shot results. i can vouch for this because i have trained hundreds of males and females in India, on whom even the best gyms have given up, and they had shown excellent results, all because somewhere down the line they got too complicated and forgot the basics.
all the best.
Thank you. This may be a good solution. She never wants to work on legs, she thinks she will look bulky. As you know, when a client doesn’t get the results they want working with one trainer, they get stuck in their mind about what works and doesn’t work. I will try this with her, and of course work on dietary changes. We were speaking about her getting her hormone levels tested for low estrogen or too much cortisol in her body, and incorporating meditation and other stress relieving methods into her weekly routine.
As David asked I would like to know more about her cardio: Is she doing an easy 30 minute steady state routine? I would suggest she make at least two of those days interval training, have her go for a shorter period of time, but make sure she gets some high intensity intervals. You might also want to check her sleep status; as with high stress, lack of sleep can interfere with her hormones, and cause increased abdominal fat storage.
I don’t have any of my clients do full sit-ups. For a flat stomach you need to strengthen the abdominal muscles, not the hip flexors. Have your client only roll her shoulders up off the floor until you / her feel the abdominals tighten. Going any further will engage the hip flexors which connect to the lower back & put pressure on the lumbar spine
Change would be good for her but it needs to monitored and done with care.
Diet is a great place to start.
Interval running or changing the speeds along with inclines are options.
Try changing her whole routine for 6 to 8 weeks. I always felt this was a fun time for my client to try some new exercises. I always felt this was a good time for me as a trainer to get out of my mold of exercises and challenge myself.
Just a few ideas would be like trying Insanity type workouts, P90X, Kettlebells, TRX has some fun suspension trainers and Rip trainers, different forms of functional training (ropes, bands), crossfit training, Brick training (triathlon) like biking to running, boxing or whatever you want to come up with. Core training does involve rotational movements (which does present more caution also).
Changing the weights and reps are always the easiest things to do, but something new can be fun if you introduce it with enthusiam. You have to believe in the product or exercise you are introducing also. I hope this helps.