Friday, February 5, 2016

The Myth of Spot Reduction

The Myth of Spot Reduction

You have no doubt seen the infomercials containing exercise equipment purporting to ‘tone your legs’ “flatten your abs” and make your body look just like your favorite celebrity.

These contraptions claim to be able to burn fat from specific areas such as the stomach, the thighs, and so forth. However, the manufacturers of these products are just preying on uninformed and gullible consumers.

They are trying to spread the false belief that by training one area such as your belly, with remove belly fat from that area. This is false and is one reason why many people don’t get anywhere with their weight loss goals. Save your money and don’t buy these exercise machines you see on infomercials

Spot Reduction is a Myth
The truth is that no matter how you exercise, you will not be able to target losing fat in any specific area. By doing abdominal crunches all day with the idea you will lose belly fat will leave you disappointed. After all that hard work, you will find that you haven’t lost many inches off your waist.

In fact you will probably have over trained your muscles and possibly cause yourself an injury.

The only thing that these exercises do is target the muscles not the fat covering the muscles.

How to Remove Body Fat?
If these exercises only work the muscle then how do we burn away body fat? The only way to do it is through a caloric deficit which is achieved with exercise, a proper diet or a combination of both these things. If you consume less calories than you burn then you will be able to achieve this and your body will start burning stored body fat for energy.

A diet that consists of lean protein, leafy green vegetables, unprocessed carbohydrates and healthy fats will help you remove body fat.

In terms of exercise, high intensity interval training (HIIT) is highly effective at burning body fat. This type of workout involves a high intensity period followed by a lower intensity recovery period. It also often doesn’t require any expensive equipment to do.

Another type of exercise that will help you burn body fat is strength training/weight training. This type of exercise will help build muscle which will increase your resting metabolic rate. If you’re trying to burn body fat, a higher metabolic rate will help you achieve this.

So to summarize, spot reduction is a myth. Exercises and exercise machines will target the muscles of your body and not body fat in that specific area. You can only burn fat by a eating a proper diet and doing exercise to achieve a caloric deficit.


  1. I had to learn the hard way and after thousands of dollars spent on exercise machines and equipment. I have the right motivations, but my methods are not as effective as I’ve anticipated. I have not reached my weight goal despite working out. While I did lower my weight, it took me longer than expected with so much effort. It’s best to ignore the hype and focus on what really works: proper diet and exercise.

  2. Well, call me uninformed and gullible because I have the infomercial contraptions you speak off just gathering dust! It’s not even funny! What a waste, really. But I know better now. I eat clean now but I’m not overly conscious about the calorie intake. I just make sure I get enough nutrition for the day and get on with exercise that I’m actually enjoying. I try to keep stress levels down because I tend to eat junk food when I’m so stressed out. It can be hard work but it’s worth it.

  3. Weight training is all good. It targets all the muscle groups and helps you to burn fat quicker than cardio. This is my main form of exercise and my weight loss is going really well.