Marissa Nieves Fitness ExpertMarissa Nieves, Fitness Expert for the January 28 Day Weight Loss Challenge, shares some information on why you might not be having success moving that belly bulge and how you can make an impact:
Belly busting workouts are more popular now than ever. Among women, the most asked questions regarding fat loss are related specifically to the tummy area. Here are 5 reasons you may be losing fat elsewhere, but may not be targeting the belly!

Spot Training

Although, it seems logical to workout the abdominal area to remove unwanted belly fat, this is a common misconception. Simply training the tummy area with sit ups, bridges and oblique crunches does not often aid the reduction of visceral fat. So, while core conditioning exercises are great for strengthening the deeper core muscles, unfortunately, core exercises do not often remove belly fat on their own. Their are certainly workouts that do support a healthy reduction of belly fat and a combination of resistance and cardiovascular exercises can create the perfect workout to help to reduce stubborn body fat. The HIIT workouts from the 28 Day Challenges are designed to increase fat burning potential by offering high intensity workouts coupled with short rest periods.


We all know sleep is important for a variety of health reasons but it also helps to regulate body fat. Scientific studies have shown that those who sleep less than 5-6 hours per night are more than 35% more likely to gain extra weight than those who sleep longer. If your sleep patterns have you up at night and during the day, try to take naps when your baby sleeps or remove stimulus at least an hour before bedtime for a deeper sleep. A few household tasks left undone are far less important than your health and happiness. Just by deciding to spend a little more time in bed, you may reap the benefits of reducing unwanted belly fat.


If you have been feeling unwell recently, it is possible your body may be holding onto body fat for health reasons. If you have been feeling unwell, choose to boost your immune system with plenty of pure water and whole foods high in vitamins A, C and E. In addition, if your body has has blood sugar or hormonal imbalances, it is possible that you may be carrying excess weight due to inflammation or high testosterone. If you have recently been unwell, contact your doctor to ensure there are no underlying health reasons for storing belly fat.
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Many scientific studies link high sugar intake to heart attacks, inflammatory diseases, obesity and liver problems but not always to increased belly fat. However, new studies show that visceral belly fat is often fuelled by sugar. According to the literature, it may be worth reducing sugar and increase fats to increase metabolism, support blood sugar balance and overall support women’s health and fat loss. It is well documented that consuming the right amount of monounsaturated fats and polyunsaturated fats such as omega 3s, actually aids the fat burning process. So there could be some great reward in reaching for an avocado smoothie over a sweet treat.


Stress hormones are one of the culprits of lingering body fat. Scientific studies show a direct correlation between stress and belly fat. Reducing stress may seem like a lifelong practice and it is. Small tasks and positive daily activities can reduce stress hormones such as cortisol considerably. These hormones, which peak from stress, can cause an increase of fluid retention and fatty deposits in the body. Allow yourself more time out to rest, play and enjoy life. Give yourself some pamper time and one hour a week to do something you really love! Shift your focus from all you have to do to all you have to be thankful for in the moment. By simply changing our perspective, we can help to reduce both emotional and physical stress on the body.
Marissa Nieves, Fitness Expert
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