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How to Lose Belly Fat: From a Big Belly to Sixpack

How to Lose Belly Fat: From a Big Belly to Sixpack

Everyone has body fat. Ignore the fitness magazine headline of the ripped guy saying how he literally has no fat on his body.

Body Fat is necessary. It is the best fuel storage for your body as it’s providing him a lot of energy. Fat tissue is your body’s way of storing energy.

Back in our hunter and gatherer times this was crucial. One could not buy foods as easily as we buy them today. In prehistoric times we had to go days and maybe even weeks without food. The accumulation of fat cells was crucial in that day and age.

Fat cells used to be our friends, now we like to call them our worst enemy. What used to be so beneficial in the past is now deeply annoying. But that fat storage, especially around your waist — belly fat, can not only be annoying, but also be dangerously life threatening.

Not All Body Fat Is Created Equal

My grandfather used to have a really big and hard belly. He had such a huge belly that he would be able to drive his Mercedes with his tummy only. Just hilarious when you think about it.

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My grandpa was not storing his body fat at the right point. In fact, the belly fat turned out to be life threatening. My grandfather suffered from lung cancer just some years later, but which he has thankfully beaten by now. He developed dangerous fat around his organs, which can be really, really dangerous.

We have to make an important difference when it comes to body fat:

Visceral Fat: the fat that is stored around your organs.

This is the fat my grandfather possessed in excess. Fat around your organs can be potentially life threatening. It reduces the blood flow to these important tissues and can impair organ function. It’s very stressful for your body. You’ve got a lot of visceral fat on your belly if it’s hard and constantly looks like the belly has swollen up. The typical beer belly is a product of fat build up around your organs.

Subcutaneous Fat: the fat that most people possess.

Instead of laying around your organs, this fat is directly under your skin. You can pinch it with your fingers. This fat is less life threatening, but it can also drastically impair your confidence, athletic ability and your self-image. Subcutaneous fat can also be found around your hips, where it is called cellulite.

Although visceral fat is the more dangerous one, both of these fat cells should be avoided to have in excess. They both can increase the fat content in your blood. As fat levels rise, the ability of your body to clear sugar from the blood drops due to insulin resistance. This can lead to type 2 diabetes in the long-term.

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How I’ve Lost My Fat

I didn’t always have a sixpack. Belly fat was something that was nearly impossible to lose for me.

I remember talking with a friend that had great abs since he was born. I asked him for advice. He told me that I should find ways to cope with my current situation, as having a sixpack is purely genetical. Not the motivation I had hoped for.

Today I can tell you with confidence that he was wrong. I currently have a sixpack and am extremely proud of it. It shows me that everything is possible if you put in the work.

What needs to be done to lose your belly fat is often just a mindset shift. Most people know that they’re eating the wrong foods. You already know that daily exercise is crucial for losing your belly fat.  What people often lack is the mental state and the willingness to actually put in the work.

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    Increase Your Discipline, Motivation And Drive

    How do you increase your discipline, motivation and drive? I suggest you doing three things:

    1. Exercise

    I don’t recommend you exercising for burning excess calories only. Yes, there is some of that, but exercise can also dramatically influence your mindset.

    Physical activity gives you the feeling of control over your life. It gives you better self-awareness and control, it betters your thinking and increases your happiness. The mental state of mind that you need when you’re trying to lose your belly fat.

    2. Practice Mindfulness

    Meditate daily. Doesn’t have to be too long. As simple as two minutes of focusing on your breath is totally enough.

    Mindfulness helps you improve your thoughts. Thoughts turn into desire and desire turns into actions. By controlling your thoughts you’re less likely to indulge in foods that you know are not good for you. My binge eating habit nearly disappeared after practicing mindfulness on a daily basis.

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    3. Improve Yourself Every Day

    Or as Warren Buffett said: You have to develop the habits of success. Realize that your life is constantly under construction. You were not born perfect and neither was I. Try to constantly change your life for the better. This way you will find new ways to better your health and loose the excess fat on your tummy.

    Start Losing Your Belly Fat

    Take immediate action. The previous list may seem long and tedious, but don’t get discouraged.  Start small.  Small changes add up over the long-term.

    Ask yourself: Have you washed your dishes today? If not, stop reading this article right now and wash your dishes. Don’t search for excuses, simply do it right now. Once you’ve washed your dishes, ask yourself: Have I made my bed this morning? No? Immediately start making your bed.

    These habits may seem insignificant to you, but trust me, they will help you get momentum in your life.

    There are two options: Either you control your mind, or your mind controls you.

    To watch a video on how to better control your mind and become limitless, while losing your belly fat of course, click here.

    More by this author

    Florian Wüest

    Qualified and experienced fitness trainer and online coach.

    Why You Should Keep a Fitness Journal to Jumpstart Weight Loss The Truth Behind Rapid Weight Loss and the Best Way to Shed Pounds How Long Does it Take to Build Muscle and Increase Fat Loss? How Vegan Bodybuilding Diet Keeps Hunger at Bay While Plant Based The Biggest Myth Debunked: The More Protein You Eat, the Faster You Build Muscles?

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    Last Updated on September 16, 2019

    How to Stop Procrastinating: 11 Practical Ways for Procrastinators

    How to Stop Procrastinating: 11 Practical Ways for Procrastinators

    You have a deadline looming. However, instead of doing your work, you are fiddling with miscellaneous things like checking email, social media, watching videos, surfing blogs and forums. You know you should be working, but you just don’t feel like doing anything.

    We are all familiar with the procrastination phenomenon. When we procrastinate, we squander away our free time and put off important tasks we should be doing them till it’s too late. And when it is indeed too late, we panic and wish we got started earlier.

    The chronic procrastinators I know have spent years of their life looped in this cycle. Delaying, putting off things, slacking, hiding from work, facing work only when it’s unavoidable, then repeating this loop all over again. It’s a bad habit that eats us away and prevents us from achieving greater results in life.

    Don’t let procrastination take over your life. Here, I will share my personal steps on how to stop procrastinating. These 11 steps will definitely apply to you too:

    1. Break Your Work into Little Steps

    Part of the reason why we procrastinate is because subconsciously, we find the work too overwhelming for us. Break it down into little parts, then focus on one part at the time. If you still procrastinate on the task after breaking it down, then break it down even further. Soon, your task will be so simple that you will be thinking “gee, this is so simple that I might as well just do it now!”.

    For example, I’m currently writing a new book (on How to achieve anything in life). Book writing at its full scale is an enormous project and can be overwhelming. However, when I break it down into phases such as –

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    • (1) Research
    • (2) Deciding the topic
    • (3) Creating the outline
    • (4) Drafting the content
    • (5) Writing Chapters #1 to #10,
    • (6) Revision
    • (7) etc.

    Suddenly it seems very manageable. What I do then is to focus on the immediate phase and get it done to my best ability, without thinking about the other phases. When it’s done, I move on to the next.

    2. Change Your Environment

    Different environments have different impact on our productivity. Look at your work desk and your room. Do they make you want to work or do they make you want to snuggle and sleep? If it’s the latter, you should look into changing your workspace.

    One thing to note is that an environment that makes us feel inspired before may lose its effect after a period of time. If that’s the case, then it’s time to change things around. Refer to Steps #2 and #3 of 13 Strategies To Jumpstart Your Productivity, which talks about revamping your environment and workspace.

    3. Create a Detailed Timeline with Specific Deadlines

    Having just 1 deadline for your work is like an invitation to procrastinate. That’s because we get the impression that we have time and keep pushing everything back, until it’s too late.

    Break down your project (see tip #1), then create an overall timeline with specific deadlines for each small task. This way, you know you have to finish each task by a certain date. Your timelines must be robust, too – i.e. if you don’t finish this by today, it’s going to jeopardize everything else you have planned after that. This way it creates the urgency to act.

    My goals are broken down into monthly, weekly, right down to the daily task lists, and the list is a call to action that I must accomplish this by the specified date, else my goals will be put off.

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    Here’re more tips on setting deadlines: 22 Tips for Effective Deadlines

    4. Eliminate Your Procrastination Pit-Stops

    If you are procrastinating a little too much, maybe that’s because you make it easy to procrastinate.

    Identify your browser bookmarks that take up a lot of your time and shift them into a separate folder that is less accessible. Disable the automatic notification option in your email client. Get rid of the distractions around you.

    I know some people will out of the way and delete or deactivate their facebook accounts. I think it’s a little drastic and extreme as addressing procrastination is more about being conscious of our actions than counteracting via self-binding methods, but if you feel that’s what’s needed, go for it.

    5. Hang out with People Who Inspire You to Take Action

    I’m pretty sure if you spend just 10 minutes talking to Steve Jobs or Bill Gates, you’ll be more inspired to act than if you spent the 10 minutes doing nothing. The people we are with influence our behaviors. Of course spending time with Steve Jobs or Bill Gates every day is probably not a feasible method, but the principle applies — The Hidden Power of Every Single Person Around You

    Identify the people, friends or colleagues who trigger you – most likely the go-getters and hard workers – and hang out with them more often. Soon you will inculcate their drive and spirit too.

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    As a personal development blogger, I “hang out” with inspiring personal development experts by reading their blogs and corresponding with them regularly via email and social media. It’s communication via new media and it works all the same.

    6. Get a Buddy

    Having a companion makes the whole process much more fun. Ideally, your buddy should be someone who has his/her own set of goals. Both of you will hold each other accountable to your goals and plans. While it’s not necessary for both of you to have the same goals, it’ll be even better if that’s the case, so you can learn from each other.

    I have a good friend whom I talk to regularly, and we always ask each other about our goals and progress in achieving those goals. Needless to say, it spurs us to keep taking action.

    7. Tell Others About Your Goals

    This serves the same function as #6, on a larger scale. Tell all your friends, colleagues, acquaintances and family about your projects. Now whenever you see them, they are bound to ask you about your status on those projects.

    For example, sometimes I announce my projects on The Personal Excellence Blog, Twitter and Facebook, and my readers will ask me about them on an ongoing basis. It’s a great way to keep myself accountable to my plans.

    8. Seek out Someone Who Has Already Achieved the Outcome

    What is it you want to accomplish here, and who are the people who have accomplished this already? Go seek them out and connect with them. Seeing living proof that your goals are very well achievable if you take action is one of the best triggers for action.

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    9. Re-Clarify Your Goals

    If you have been procrastinating for an extended period of time, it might reflect a misalignment between what you want and what you are currently doing. Often times, we outgrow our goals as we discover more about ourselves, but we don’t change our goals to reflect that.

    Get away from your work (a short vacation will be good, else just a weekend break or staycation will do too) and take some time to regroup yourself. What exactly do you want to achieve? What should you do to get there? What are the steps to take? Does your current work align with that? If not, what can you do about it?

    10. Stop Over-Complicating Things

    Are you waiting for a perfect time to do this? That maybe now is not the best time because of X, Y, Z reasons? Ditch that thought because there’s never a perfect time. If you keep waiting for one, you are never going to accomplish anything.

    Perfectionism is one of the biggest reasons for procrastination. Read more about why perfectionist tendencies can be a bane than a boon: Why Being A Perfectionist May Not Be So Perfect.

    11. Get a Grip and Just Do It

    At the end, it boils down to taking action. You can do all the strategizing, planning and hypothesizing, but if you don’t take action, nothing’s going to happen. Occasionally, I get readers and clients who keep complaining about their situations but they still refuse to take action at the end of the day.

    Reality check:

    I have never heard anyone procrastinate their way to success before and I doubt it’s going to change in the near future.  Whatever it is you are procrastinating on, if you want to get it done, you need to get a grip on yourself and do it.

    More About Procrastination

    Featured photo credit: Malvestida Magazine via unsplash.com

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