Why would anyone want a smaller waist? For starters, the circumference of your waist correlates with your risk of metabolic disease, type 2 diabetes and obesity. A small waist emphasizes a v-taper and can significantly enhance muscle proportions. For people who just want to get in shape, a small waist will help in giving you that hourglass figure.

Good thing is that you don’t have to win the genetic lottery to get a smaller waist. There are other ways to go about it such as:

TRAINING AND EXERCISES


1. INCREASE TRAINING INTENSITY

Most people cringe upon hearing they have to burn fat because they have an idea of what needs to be done—increase activity levels and reduce calorie intake. There’s really no way around it. Unless you want to resort to illegal substances with potentially dangerous side effects, you must adhere to a proper nutrition plan and exercise regularly.

Remember that spot reducing isn’t possible so hundreds of crunches a day won’t make a difference. Aim to lose total body fat and be patient as your abdominal and lower back fat come off.


2. BUILD YOUR BACK

Developing your back muscles, especially the lats, will give your torso more shape, which will make the waist appear smaller. Due to genetics, some people may have a more difficult time shrinking the waist than building the lats. In case you’re one of these people, focus on exercises such as wide-grip pull ups, lat pulldowns, alternating single-arm dumbbell rows and t-bar rows.


3. PERFORM VACUUM EXERCISES

Most people just do crunches, sit-ups, and leg raises for their core work. These exercises are great for strengthening the external abdominal muscles but you must also work the internal abdominal muscles, namely the Transversus Abdominus and the Lumbar Multifidus. This can be achieved by performing vacuum exercises. During Arnold Schwarzenegger’s time in bodybuilding, he and other top bodybuilders used to perform vacuum exercises on a regular basis to help shrink their waists and give them a dramatic hourglass shape.

To perform a simple vacuum exercise, begin by inhaling deeply drawing your navel closer to your spine while expanding your rib cage. A great way to start these exercises is using the classic plank - place your feet on a foam roller and rock forwards and backwards while holding in your navel and engaging your core muscles. 


4. BUILD THE GLUTES

Building the glutes has a similar effect as building the lats. If you have a boxy-type frame, building the glutes will enhance a smaller waist. In order to effectively build the glutes, try incorporating exercises such as barbell hip thrusts, weighted kickbacks, squats and step-ups.


5. STRENGTHEN YOUR CORE

Showing off that you can do hanging leg raises with a 30 lb dumbbell between your feet is most definitely impressive but more often than not, your waist thickness will be affected. There’s nothing wrong with having a strong core but doing too much weighted ab work will thicken the muscles around the waist which will give your frame less shape or curves.

Performing bodyweight ab exercises will still strengthen the core without adding thickness to your midsection.

NUTRITION TIPS

Exercise can only do so much in sculpting a lean, flat tummy. Whether your goal is a solid six pack or just-you know, wear a bikini with confidence - nutrition reigns supreme in reducing fat and keeping it off.

Remember that any nutritional strategy needs to be realistic and maintainable in the long run, otherwise your belly fat will return after beach season. Luckily, fat reduction doesn’t need to be an arduous procedure - keep these simple tips in mind to get beach-ready, crunches optional.

count your calories

1. COUNT YOUR CALORIES

Regardless of how healthy your overall diet or the amount of time you put in at the gym, eating too many Calories will ultimately cause you to gain weight, or prevent you from losing weight. The average, active adult needs 12 Calories per 1 lb of goal weight to maintain a healthy weight, and 10 Calories per 1 lb of goal weight to lose. Counting your calories can be a rude awakening for some people, so use it as a base to get you started!

cut alcohol

2. SAY NO TO ALCOHOL, JUICES, AND OTHER CALORIC BEVERAGES

Consider water your new best friend. Water, unsweetened iced tea, and unsweetened coffee with small amounts of half and half are fine: juices, alcohol, smoothies, soda, sports drinks, and other Calorie-containing beverages? Gone. Beverages containing Calories typically contain added sugar, or else are concentrated sources of carbohydrate that are broken down into sugar instantly upon digestion, creating an inhospitable environment for weight management.

Whenever you consume a high-carb drink, those carbohydrates are broken into sugar units, which enter the bloodstream, prompting your pancreas to secrete the hormone insulin. Insulin is then tasked with carrying that sugar out of the  bloodstream and into cells for energy or fat for storage.

By reducing your consumption of high-carb beverages, you’re also reducing the likelihood that carbohydrate will be stored as fat. Save your carbs for more important things, like food you can actually chew, and base that intake around your workouts for faster results.

3. PICK PROTEIN

In general, favoring protein over carbohydrate is best for weight management. Protein doesn’t just keep you fuller longer - it also requires no insulin to break down, preventing excess fat storage that comes with high-carb meals and snacks.

 

Make sure that each meal and snack focuses on healthy, lean proteins or Omega-3 rich seafood, and save your carbs for healthy options, including vegetables, fruit, and high-fiber grains, all of which produce more favorable fat storage outcomes than refined carbs (white rice, regular pasta, chips, crackers, candy, etc).

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