Ab Trainers and Belly Fat – The Truth

Hi everyone,

I hate to admit this, but I am actually ill 🙁 I think I have a mild flu or something AND an ear ache/infection – hence the lack of new workouts!

Today I thought I’d take the opportunity to talk about one of my pet peeves – Ab trainers!! Trainers such as ab cradles, and that ridiculous Ab Circle Pro really get to me, because their makers market them as a way of “spot reducing” fat in the mid-section! Your body loses fat from everywhere in the right conditions, so the key is not to focus on one small area, but to use as many muscles as you can to burn the most calories.  Many people fall for this ploy and it is downright exploitation of peoples’ insecurities and deepest desires to rid themselves of that “stubborn” tummy fat.

I too once spent hours doing crunches using a ab cradle hoping that hidden six pack would one day appear. In reality, you can only achieve a six-pack by :

  1. Eating right
  2. Intensive cardio workouts
  3. Full body resistance training.

You could spend ages doing ab exercises and hardly burn a pick of fat.
What bugs me the most about watching the infomercials on the Ab Circle Pro is that Fitness Model Jennifer Nicole-Lee endorses it! This is crazy false advertising, because you have to be super strict and dedicated with eating right and exercising a lot to maintain a figure like hers.  And this machine claims a 4 minutes per day workout will give you results!!

Why not just be truthful with people – I hate that these companies make money by preying on peoples’ ignorance and low self esteem!

Some defenders of this equipment may say at this point that these machines also help strengthen your abs. That may be true but there are MUCH more effective pieces of equipment to use that cost a fraction of the price of the Ab Circle Pro for example.  A stability ball for one will allow you to exercise every part of you abs within their full range of motion, while offering an excellent way to strengthen your core too, plus the ball can be used to exercise other body parts.  Ab discs also allow this full range of motion (so too will a rolled up towel under the small of your back).  Hanging leg or knee raises help to build strength in the lower abdominals and obliques (and if bodyfat is low enough will define them too). So you don’t need to spend a lot of money on a fancy piece of equipment. All you’re really paying for is a false hope. Without the whole equation, you will never see your tummy fat reduce.

Below is a video from a fellow YouTuber who has very similar views to me on ab exercises and ab cradles and outlines the reason why there is a better way.  This is by Jay from WellnessMafia .

So to summarise, if you want to lose belly fat, think of the bigger picture and start exercising your WHOLE body with resistance AND cardio, while eating right. Remember it is NOT a quick fix but it’ll be a hell of a lot quicker than using an ab trainer for “4 magical minutes a day”! Be consistent and don’t give up.

Not to dishearten anyone, but I have been training seriously now for about 12 – 18 months (intensity fluctuating depending on my arthritis at times, but I’ve been consistent for the last 7 months) and I have yet to see my six-pack. It would take an extreme diet change and a drop of probably another 4% bodyfat for me to see better results. (Not that someone else can’t achieve better results faster than me, but I only want to put the false marketers’ claims into perspective)

I saw the best changes, when I became food aware and started training with heavier weights along with short bursts of cardio.

To strengthen your abs, engage your core in everything you do, and add in “full motion” ab exercises.

LASTLY, if it seems too good to be true – it probably is :/

Sorry for the rant. Let me know your thoughts on this topic by leaving a comment below.

Marianne

  • July 18, 2010

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