How do you make sure that your belly is sculpted properly? Simply put, you will have to create a daily calorie deficit. This means you have to cut down on the calories that you take in day by day. Of course, you will have to do this gradually. Cutting down on your calorie intake drastically is counterproductive. It will cause your body to go into shock and store fats in an effort to protect itself from the shock of getting too little calories all at once.
An excellent technique is to eat 5-6 small meals instead of three large meals in a day. This will help ensure that you do not experience hunger pangs and grab fatty snacks in between meals. The ideal ratio for each of your meals is one part fats, two parts protein, and three parts carbohydrates. This is, however, not a strict guideline and you can vary it a little bit. For example, it is advisable to take in more protein and carbohydrates after exercise. Finally, never forget to supplement your diet with a daily dose of multivitamins.
2. Dumbbell Side Bend.
This exercise is one of the best for strengthening your obliques as long as it is done with good technique. This is important simply because many of our everyday activities involve considerable twisting and side bending. What you should remember in doing this exercise is that the quality of your movement is a lot more important than the amount of weight that you use. In fact, it is best to use moderate to light weights coupled with slow and controlled movements in order to build strength quickly while avoiding injury.
To begin the exercise, stand with your feet at shoulder width position. Bend your knees slightly and grasp a dumbbell in your right hand with your palm facing your body and then place your left hand on your waist. Bend slowly to the right from the waist and then bring yourself back up. Now, bend slowly to the left in the same manner and then bring yourself back up. Make sure that your right arm is kept straight throughout the movement. Complete your reps and then repeat the exercise with the dumbbell held in your left hand.
3. Hanging Knee Raise to the Side.
This exercise is perfect for working not only your obliques, but also your lower abs. What's best is that you don't have to find any special equipment for this. You can hang from whatever is capable of holding your weight for an extended period. Most people choose a pull-up bar for this purpose. Perform the exercise by hanging off the bar with your hands slightly wider than a shoulder width apart. As soon as your feet are lifted off the floor, pull your knees up and then bring them across towards the left side of your body. Pause for one second and then slowly lower your knees back down. Bring your knees back up, this time bringing them towards the right side of your body. When you bring your knees back down this time, you have completed one rep. Repeat the movement according to your desired number of reps.
4. Oblique Crunches.
This is a great exercise for targeting your love handles. Plus, the fact that it requires you to perform rotation and spinal flexion also means that it works both your obliques and your upper abs. Here's how to do this exercise properly:
Lie on your back and then cross your left foot over your right knee with your hands positioned behind your head. Lift your shoulders off the floor and then curl your upper body towards your left knee. Be sure to keep your lower back pressed to the floor. Contract your obliques and upper abs as hard as possible at the top of the movement and then resist on your back down. Do 12-16 reps and then switch to the other side.
5. Ab Crunch Machines.
This is one of the very few times that we will recommend a machine exercise for your abs. To begin the exercise, pick up a light resistance and then sit down on the ab machine with your feet placed under the pads. Grab the top handles with your arms bent at a 90-degree angle and your triceps resting on the corresponding pads.
Now, lift your legs up slowly while crunching your upper body. Inhale at starting position and exhale as you perform this movement. Be sure to move in a slow and controlled manner and focus on moving the weight with your abs while keeping your legs and feet relaxed. Pause for one second at the top of the movement and then slowly return to starting position. For this exercise, you should remember that too much weight can cause injury, so keep it light.
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