Spot Reduction – One Final Attempt to Kill the Myth
It’s time to STOP listening to Myth Conceptions and START using the correct resources to ultimately get the results you are wanting!
Lets discuss one of the most popular Myth Conceptions and that is…Why is it NOT possible to “spot reduce?”
The concept of spot reduction represents a stubborn myth that will not go away. The idea of repeatedly exercising or moving a specific body part in the hope of selectively losing fat (targeting) from that area of the body is certainly appealing.
Though you could argue that it is possible to “spot tone,” or to target a specific area of the body for muscle development, this is NOT the same as “spot reduction.” Fat stores are generally released in a predetermined order, dependent on individual genetics. This profile, where you lose fat from, depends largely on your parents and the “genetic cards” you were dealt.
Bottom line: To a large extent, genetic and hormonal factors control where fat is deposited in our bodies. Doing a 1000 ab exercise repetitions or triceps (back of the upper arm) presses is not going to help you lose fat from your waist or the back of your arms.
What can you do about those trouble spots and areas that include the back of the upper arms, “love handles” and lower abdominal area or “pooch?”
Answer: Expend more calories than you take in by performing cardiovascular and strength training exercise, and add moderate calorie restriction if appropriate to your situation. Remember, strength training (building muscle mass) will turn you into a calorie-burning furnace. If I had to choose between strength training and traditional cardio for fat loss, I’d go with strength training! It’s that important. But of course, do steady state cardio, intervals and strength training for best results. See #’s 2 & 3 for more info on losing weight and “fat burning.”
Be sure to check out all of our blogs and bi-weekly posts. You’ll always find my favorite progressions, drills, coaching philosophy and trending topics at COREFX.ca
Douglas Brooks, MS, Exercise Physiologist, Director of Education for COREFX, is a former-Ironman® triathlete and currently directs Athlete Conditioning for Sugar Bowl Ski Academy where he works with elite junior and professional athletes. Douglas was inducted into the U.S. National Fitness Hall of Fame and has been honored by Can-Fit-Pro as the International Presenter of the Year. Coach Brooks is the author of numerous training books, and most recently, was the recipient of the IDEA Personal Trainer of the Year Award.