Targeting fat by exercising specific areas is the biggest myth for fat loss. I don't know where it began but as most myths it starts with misinformation being passed around over time. I can't explain why people think this is true but its a reality never the less. I have even (to my dismay) heard of trainers giving this advice to clients. Think about it for a minute. If all you had to do was sit ups every night to lose belly fat then you'd think more people would have "flat abs". But it doesnt work that way. Its more like an ice cube in the middle of a room and turning up the heat. You CAN control the temperature of the room but you CAN NOT control what side of the ice cube melts first or faster. Same with your fat loss. Your body breaks down fat to use as energy but its not the first choice of your energy systems as a source of fuel. So there is limited use of fat for fuel. We could get into detail about energy systems here but we'll save that for another time. Just know that you can't target specific areas for fat loss. It comes off where your body decides to take it from. What IS in your control is your diet and activity level. THOSE are the things you can change to target fat loss.
Targeting specific muscle groups for hypertrophy (muscle growth) is not the same as targeting fat but maybe where the myth started from. If you want bigger biceps you need to work them hard so they adapt and rebuild bigger, but if you do crunches and sit ups to lose belly fat, you are wasting your time. One of the more effective methods we have found for creating fat burning bodies, is by building lean muscle mass. Lean muscle burns fat more effectively. To do this, lift heavy and lift often. Follow your workout with a good metabolic exercise set. I like to have clients do high intensity sprint intervals or a tabata set afterwards.
What can you do to have success? First, surround yourself with a team of people who have like minds and goals. They will help encourage and support you in your journey. Become disciplined with your diet and exercise. Be consistent with your workout schedule. Missing a workout is not an option. But hey, it does happen so don't let it be the end of the world if you do. Just don't let it make you fall off track either. Get right back as soon as you can. Hold YOURSELF accountable. This isn't anyone elses journey its yours and its up to you. Others can encourage and support you but no one will hold your hand and do it for you. You must take the steps yourself. Know that it is not easy. If it were easy more people would do it. There is no magic pills or quick fixes. Just good ole repeated hard work. I know you want it. I know you have what it takes. I KNOW there is a warrior with in you who is ready to fight for success. Look in the mirror and tell your self "I AM WORTH IT".
First step complete. We'll see you at the Gym!