Most Annoying Question in Fitness and Subsequent Sad Answer

“How can I reduce my stomach fat?”

“I need to tone my arms. Can you give me some tips?”

“I’ve been doing n*100 crunches for so long but it doesn’t work. Which ab exercises will help me uncover my six pack?”

“Which exercises can help me get rid of my love handles?”

You see, various forms of the most annoying question asked. And the subsequent sad answer to it is “No. There is no specific exercise to help your cause.”. Often received with emotions of disbelief or disappointment, this is the truth. You cannot target fat reduction (unless you go for surgery/ lypolysis) at abdomen area specifically or for that matter at any body location; be it arms, hips or thighs (Ladies, please note!).


Human body stores fat in form of triglycerides in adipose tissues all over the body. When and if energy is required from fat stores of the body, triglycerides have to break down to release glycerol and free fatty acids which can be transported through blood stream to cells which require energy. In non chemical jargon, it’s more of a centralized process than localized distribution of resources (I know! Why Nature didn’t take local inventory management classes?). Empirical studies like this confirm the same.

Think of it in this way. If locally stored fat would be burnt using muscles of the same region, cricketers like Ramesh Powar would certainly look very amusing with right arm, left calves and hips, all toned up while their left and right counterparts staying as they are. Heavyweight combat fighter Roy Nelson would certainly have a toned right arm, obliques and chest half while rest of his body staying as it is.



Moving on from doing endless crunches, situps, leg raises (doesn’t even train abs) and side raises (most do it wrong anyway), the key to reducing fat from any region is to reduce body fat % overall. Each human body has a priority list for storing fat in different regions and once you start to loose fat, it will take its sweet time to go accordingly. Proper nutritional and exercise programming should be key focus areas to achieve a better physique. So, eat clean and train smart.


In Lucem Scientiam


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