How to Firm Up a Flabby, Hanging Stomach

A flabby, hanging stomach can be a sign of an unhealthy lifestyle, says Harvard Health Publishing. Childbirth, extreme weight loss and weight that fluctuates frequently can also result in a saggy belly.

Cardio is a great way to help firm up your stomach.
Credit: filadendron/E+/GettyImages

Making changes to your exercise routine, diet and lifestyle can add up to inches lost and a firmer abdomen. Making healthy food choices as well as strengthening your core work together to create a leaner profile.

Lose Your Saggy Belly

After extreme weight loss or childbirth, the skin around the tummy area stretches out. This can result in something that looks a great deal like an empty pouch. But stretched skin does not necessarily mean you have extra weight to lose. Toning the muscles around your sagging lower abdomen can help stretched-out skin bounce back.

Do legs-up straight arm crunches and air bicycling. Do-legs up arm crunches by lying flat on your back and lifting your legs to a 90-degree angle. Raise your arms and pull them up toward the ceiling while lifting your shoulders and upper back off the floor. Begin with three sets of eight reps.

Do air bicycles from the same floor position, only this time bend your knees and lock your fingers behind your neck, touching your right elbow to your left knee. Alternate elbows and knees for a total of three sets of eight reps.

Read more: Exercises to Reduce Stomach Sagging

Perfect Poses Reduce Paunch

Along with abdominal exercises, certain types of yoga poses and stretches can step up your saggy belly reduction workout routine. The plank and boat poses are an intense tummy workout.

For the plank pose, start on your elbows and knees and place your feet out behind you in a plank position so your body is parallel to the floor. Hold this position for as long as you can, breathing normally throughout and try to increase the amount of time each time you do this exercise.

Begin the boat pose by sitting on the floor with your feet stretched out in front of you. Slowly tip your upper body back while you raise your feet and legs off the floor. Stretch your arms toward your legs. Your ultimate aim is to make a V-shape with your torso and legs. You might feel a bit wobbly, but your abdominal muscles will tighten as they help keep you in place. Breathe normally as you stay in boat for up to one minute, and don't worry about falling out of it. Keep trying until you can nail the pose.

Burn Belly Burn

One of the most important places to look when it comes to reducing belly fat is your refrigerator. ACE Fitness says that abs are created in the kitchen. Knowing which foods pack on belly weight and which foods help burn belly budge is important.

Eat more monounsaturated fats, like the kinds found in nuts, olive oil and seeds, and eliminate the fats found in hydrogenated oils, enriched flours and trans fats. Trans fats, such as the ones found in margarine, packaged cookies, crackers and pasta, increase midsection weight gain and can actually bring fat to the belly from other parts of the body.

Read more: 4 Steps to Tighten a Flabby Stomach and Look Fit

Fat-Busting Cardio

Getting a good cardio workout through walking, jogging, bicycling or elliptical machines helps the body burn more calories. And burning more calories is one of the best ways to fight a belly bulge. The Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans recommends doing 150 to 300 minutes a week of taking a walk or other moderately intense cardiovascular exercises to increase belly-fat loss and improve overall health and well-being.

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