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5 Exercises You Shouldn't Do When Trying To Burn Belly Fat

To ensure you're being the most efficient at the gym, ditch these exercises.

When it comes to workout sessions, time is of the essence. You want to ensure your workouts are as productive as possible so that none of your precious gym time goes to waste. We chatted with an expert and are here to share five exercises you should avoid to burn belly fat and exactly what to focus on instead.

According to the Mayo Clinic, accumulating extra inches around your middle can be a natural side effect of aging. Women typically experience extra fat in their bellies post-menopause. Dealing with this additional abdominal fat is undoubtedly frustrating. Not to mention, it's linked to a number of serious health risks, such as high blood pressure, heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and breathing issues.

You want to make sure you're targeting excess fat in the most efficient way—in and out of the gym. In order to slim down and get your belly into shape, the Mayo Clinic recommends broadening your horizons beyond just ab-based exercises. For instance, sticking to a healthy diet, ditching sugary drinks, being mindful of your portion sizes, and getting in both aerobic exercise and strength training are necessary steps to make moves in the right direction.

As far as your fitness is concerned, Tim Liu, CSCS, an online fitness and nutrition coach, shares five exercises you shouldn't do when your goal is to burn belly fat. Keep reading to learn more, and next, don't miss 7 At-Home Exercises To Reduce Belly Fat in 30 Days.

Don't do these exercises to burn belly fat:

woman doing crunches

According to Liu, crunches, side bends, burpees, box jumps, and working out on the adductor machine are all exercises you should avoid if you're looking to melt belly fat. Why? Liu says you should shift your focus to compound movements that'll help you build muscle.

The Mayo Clinic reports that when engaging in physical activity, you put your muscles to good use, which aids in boosting your muscle mass. Your muscle tissue torches a greater amount of calories when compared to body fat. That's why performing strength training is so important.

What exercises should you focus on instead that are more effective? Liu suggests squats, deadlifts, presses, rows, lunges, and sprints, which is a healthy mix of aerobic and strength exercises. "They help you engage more muscle groups, which will help you burn more fat," Liu says.

Alexa Mellardo
Alexa is the Mind + Body Deputy Editor of Eat This, Not That!, overseeing the M+B channel and delivering compelling fitness, wellness, and self-care topics to readers. Read more about Alexa
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