Belly fat. It's often the bane of a woman's life! We work out, gain strong legs and arms, strengthen our chests and backs and use weights and resistance work to round it all out.
Then there's the stomach, that area of the body that bore the brunt of childbearing, as well as being the trouble spot of many women, mothers or otherwise. Menopause is no friend to the belly. Lowered metabolism and fatigue can cause weight gain around the stomach area, known as visceral fat.
And visceral fat is the most worrisome of fats. It adversely affects the risk for heart health, diabetes and some kinds of cancer. Since heart disease remains the number one killer of women, belly fat is not something to be ignored.
To read or take take part in a thread about losing menopausal belly fat, click here for EmpowHER's Community discussions on this topic: https://www.empowher.com/menopause/content/how-get-rid-menopause-belly-fat
Some women enjoy mixing up their exercise regime, others prefer to focus only on weight training. Some stick to cardio and others mix it up. Truthfully, many of us don't exercise at all.
A new study conducted by Duke University Medical Center focused on three groups that participated in a set workout. All of the nearly 200 participants were overweight and had an inactive lifestyle.
One group did aerobic training. This is exercise that causes a person to move quickly, increases heartbeat quite significantly, and increases lung function. Aerobic activities include running, tennis and swimming.
Another group did weight and resistance training only, such as free weights, weight machines and push-ups. The third group did a combination of both.
From Medical News Daily, this is how the three groups were set up:
• Aerobic training group, doing the equivalent of 12 miles jogging weekly, at 80 percent maximum heart rate.
• Resistance training group, doing 3 sets of 8-12 repetitions three times per week.
• Combination group (aerobic plus resistance)
The participants were supervised closely to make sure they participated correctly.
Researchers found that those partaking in aerobic activity used far more calories than those in the resistance training group (67 percent more). Interestingly, those doing a combination fared about the same as those doing aerobics only.
Since many experts believe the best way to burn away visceral fat is through restricting calories and cardio exercise (as opposed to weight/resistance training) it would appear that this study confirms this belief.
In short, the more calories used, the better the chance of visceral fat reduction and the best way to do this is a focus on aerobics. In fact, it would appear by the results that while resistance training is a great way to combine both forms of exercise, aerobics alone does just as good a job.
Medical News Today. Want To Lose Belly Fat? Aerobic Exercise Beats Weights. Web. Sept. 21 2011
If you exercise, do you focus on aerobic, resistance or a combination? Do you prefer one over the other or believe a certain regime works best? Is this study stating the obvious or do you believe that weight and resistance training alone is all you need to main a healthy waistline?