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Love handles and stomach fat

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  • Love handles and stomach fat

    I am 39 and have always been very thin except that during the last several years, I gradually began to develop some stomach and love handle fat. I began a regular workout routine a year ago and have been working more and more to maintain healthier eating and drinking habits. I'm happy with much of my muscle development in the last year including my abs. However, my lower abs specifically have yet to surface due to that stomach and love handle fat. Of course, I do plenty of crunches, twists, leg lifts and other various exercises which concentrate on these areas, but if the last of the stomach and love handle fat is coming off, it is doing so VERY slowly. Can anyone tell me if they have had this same experience in the past and how long it took you to lose that fat? And what exercises aside from those I previously mentioned did you perform in order to achieve that fat loss? Also, how many times a week did you perform these exercises?

  • #2
    I'd definitely say that it has nothing to do with how much you're working out. Fat is stored in different places based on the hormonal environment in your body. Umbilical fat (stomach) is related to high cortisol levels. The adipose cells in your stomach have more cortisol receptors than other sites. I've heard that side/hip/love handle type fat storage is linked to low testosterone levels.


    • #3
      Well, I'm quite certain that it isn't due to low testosterone. I'm not experiencing any of those symptoms. Perhaps I need to cut back on carbs? Also, while I say it has been a year that I have maintained a regular workout routine, I must also admit that for at least the first couple of weeks, I concentrated mostly on cardio only. Even as I did begin including weights into my routine, it was gradual and largely focused on my arms at first. In truth, I guess I would have to say that it has been closer to 9 or 10 months that I have maintained more of a full scale routine. Also, I must admit that it took me some time to really get my eating and drinking habits to a better place and could probably still do much more to improve my diet. My workout routine has also changed periodically during those 9 to 10 months with the focus being on intensifying the routine more and more as I go.


      • #4
        The high cortisol levels is a very real possibility for me. And in my case, my stress would probably be mostly related to my often poor sleeping habits. I do have a tendency to stay up too late and thus deprive myself of some much needed rest. Being unemployed for almost a year now probably doesn't help either. My hope is that as soon as I can find new work, a great deal of that stress will be relieved.


        • #5
          Cardio could very easily be contributing to your high cortisol levels. I'd stick to sprints and weights for sure, and some walks/easy hikes. I totally understand the work-related stress issue. It's a tough one to take care of.


          • #6
            Well, due to the increasing intensity of my weights work, I recently cut my cardio all the way down to just 5 minutes of HIIT, alternating between 45 seconds of walking at 3.5 speed and 5.0% grade on the treadmill and running at 6.5 speed and also 5.0% grade. Do you think those are good levels of cardio to work with? Or too little?