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Strip Away Your Belly Fat with These 5 Favorite, Trainer-Recommended Exercises

Melt belly fat and reclaim your midsection with these must-try workouts.
FACT CHECKED BY Alexa Mellardo

Stubborn belly fat is a major challenge for many of my clients on their fitness journey. While spot reduction is not possible, certain workouts can help target the core and shed unwanted inches around the waistline. A combination of cardiovascular exercises, strength training, and core-specific movements can be a powerful strategy to melt stubborn belly fat. That's why I'm here to share my five favorite workouts to lose belly fat you can easily implement into your fitness routine.

Remember that consistency, a balanced diet, and staying hydrated are essential for achieving the best results. Always consult with a fitness professional or your healthcare provider before beginning a new exercise regimen, especially if you have any underlying medical conditions or concerns.

Read on to learn about my five favorite workouts to lose belly fat, and when you're finished, be sure to check out these 10 Easy Kettlebell Exercises for Women To Melt Belly Flab.

Workout #1: High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT)

HIIT is a powerful fat-burning workout that elevates your heart rate, boosts your metabolism, and helps you shed belly fat effectively. Here's my HIIT routine to melt fat around the midsection:

1. Jump Squats

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Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart. Bend your knees and hips to lower your body into a squat. Explosively jump up, extending your legs fully. Land softly, and immediately go into the next squat. Complete three rounds of 30 seconds, and rest between rounds for 15 seconds.

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2. Mountain Climbers

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Start in a pushup position with your hands under your shoulders. Bring one knee toward your chest, then switch to the other. Keep your hips low and your core engaged. Alternate as quickly as possible. Complete three rounds of 30 seconds, and rest between rounds for 15 seconds.

3. Burpees

burpees demonstration, concept of exercises that destroy your back after 50
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Begin in a standing position. Drop into a squat position, and place your hands on the ground. Kick your feet back into a pushup position. Jump your feet back to the squat position, and explosively jump up. Complete three rounds of 30 seconds, and rest between rounds for 15 seconds.

4. Plank Jacks

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Start in a high plank position with your hands under your shoulders. Jump your feet apart, then back together while maintaining the plank position. Keep your core tight and your body in a straight line. Complete three rounds of 30 seconds, and rest between rounds for 15 seconds.

5. Russian Twists

illustration of how to do the russian twist core-strengthening exercise
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Sit on the floor with your knees bent and your feet lifted. Lean back slightly, and clasp your hands together. Twist your torso to the right, then to the left, touching the floor beside your hip with each rotation. Complete three rounds of 30 seconds, and rest between rounds for 15 seconds.

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Workout #2: Pilates

Pilates focuses on strengthening the core, promoting better posture, and toning abdominal muscles. Here's an effective Pilates routine I recommend for losing belly fat:

1. The Hundred

Lie on your back with your legs raised and your arms hovering above the ground. Pump your arms up and down while breathing in for five counts and out for five counts. Keep your lower back pressed into the mat. Complete three sets of 25 reps.

2. Roll-Ups

Begin lying flat on your back with your arms overhead. Slowly roll up one vertebra at a time, reaching for your toes. Reverse the motion to return to the starting position. Complete three sets of 20 reps.

3. Single-Leg Stretch

Lie on your back with your head and shoulders lifted. Bring one knee toward your chest, and extend the other leg out. Switch legs while keeping the upper body lifted. Complete three sets of 20 reps.

4. Planks

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Start in a pushup position with your elbows directly under your shoulders. Keep your body in a straight line from your head to your heels. Engage your core muscles, and hold the position. Complete three sets of 20 seconds.

5. Leg Circles

Lie on your back with your legs straight. Lift one leg to the ceiling, and draw small circles in the air. Reverse the direction of the circles. Complete three sets of 20 reps.

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Workout #3: Resistance Training

Resistance training builds lean muscle, which boosts metabolism and helps you burn more calories, even at rest. Here's a resistance training workout I recommend to shred belly fat:

1. Deadlifts

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Stand with your feet hip-width apart, and hold a barbell or dumbbells in front of your thighs. Hinge at your hips, and lower the weight to the ground, keeping your back straight. Lift the weight back up to the starting position. Complete three sets of 15 reps.

2. Russian Twists

Sit on the floor with your knees bent and your feet lifted. Lean back slightly, and hold a dumbbell with both hands. Twist your torso to the right, then to the left, touching the weight beside your hip with each rotation. Complete three sets of 15 reps.

3. Leg Raises

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Lie on your back with your legs straight. Lift your legs off the ground while keeping them straight. Lower them back down without letting them touch the floor. Complete three sets of 15 reps.

4. Dumbbell Side Bends

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Hold a dumbbell in one hand with your arm extended. Bend at the waist to the side with the weight, then return to an upright position. Repeat on both sides. Complete three sets of 15 reps.

5. Planks with Leg Lifts

Start in a high plank position with your hands under your shoulders. Lift one leg off the ground while maintaining a plank position. Lower it, and repeat with the other leg. Complete three sets of 15 reps.

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Workout #4: Cardio Kickboxing

Kickboxing is an effective fat-burning workout because it combines high-intensity cardio with full-body engagement, promoting calorie expenditure and fat loss. Here's a cardio kickboxing workout for melting away stubborn belly fat:

1. Jab-Cross

Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and your fists guarding your face. Extend your left arm forward in a punching motion, followed by your right arm. Alternate the punch motion between the left and right side, engaging your core with each movement. Complete the movement as many times as possible for four minutes.

2. Front Kick

Stand with your feet hip-width apart. Lift your right knee to your chest, then extend your leg in a front kick. Return your leg to the starting position, and repeat with the other leg. Complete the movement as many times as possible for four minutes.

3. Roundhouse Kick

Stand with your feet hip-width apart and your fists guarding your face. Pivot on your support foot, and kick your other leg in a circular motion. Complete the movement as many times as possible for four minutes.

Workout #5: Yoga

Yoga promotes mindfulness, flexibility, and balance, and it can help reduce stress-related belly fat. Here are five key yoga poses for trimming your midsection:

1. Downward-Facing Dog

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Start in a pushup position, and push your hips upward to create an inverted "V" shape. Press your heels toward the ground, and relax your head between your arms. Hold the pose for up to three minutes.

2. Plank Pose

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Begin in a pushup position with your hands directly under your shoulders. Keep your body in a straight line from head to heels. Hold the pose for up to three minutes.

3. Boat Pose

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Sit with your knees bent and your feet on the floor. Lift your feet off the ground, and balance on your sit bones, extending your arms forward. Hold the pose for up to three minutes.

4. Warrior II

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Stand with your feet wide apart and your arms extended parallel to the ground. Bend your front knee at a 90-degree angle while keeping your back leg straight. Hold the pose for up to three minutes.

5. Child's Pose

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Kneel on the ground, and sit back on your heels. Reach your arms forward, and lower your chest to the ground. Hold the pose for up to three minutes.

Tyler Read
Tyler Read is a personal trainer and has been involved in health and fitness for the past 15 years. Read more about Tyler