How Much Belly Fat Do You REALLY Have?

Have you ever tried the 10-second string trick to see how much belly fat you have? Cut a string to the length of your height, and then fold it in half and wrap it around your waist. If the ends of the string overlap, then your waist is less than half of your height…right where you want to be! If the string is snug, you’re not alone. In fact, two-thirds of all women are affected by abdominal obesity. If you’re a woman, you fall in this category if you have a waistline of more than 35 inches. For men, abdominal obesity is defined as a waistline of more than 40 inches.

Women who have an “apple” shape figures (carry their fat around their belly) run a higher risk of heart disease, diabetes and other obesity-related ailments compared to those who carry their weight in their hips, buns and thighs (“pear” shaped).

So if the ends of your string still have a few inches to go, here are 3 ways to combat the belly fat epidemic:

  1. Shoot For Small Action Steps
    Any goal can be broken down to small action steps that can be completed one little step at a time. That’s the way you build a bridge, write a book, lose weight, or change your life…step by step. Instead of focusing on, “I want to lose 20 pounds,” focus on, “I’m going to work out five times this week.” And next week, make a similar goal.If you find that you’re not taking your small action steps, then either the steps weren’t really doable or you need to go back and check your motivation.  The more specific your action steps are, the finer you can break them down into doable increments, the more successful you’re going to be.
  2. Challenge A Friend
    I’m often asked to name the most important aspect about working out. That’s easy: consistency! The most powerful forces in our lives are our habits. You probably have a number of things in your life (for better or worse) that you do habitually, without thinking. If you can make exercise one of them, you’ve won the battle.I have a hard time even telling people what my exercise “regimen” is because I don’t think of it that way. Being physically active is woven into the fabric of my life; I don’t think of it as a separate thread.One of the easiest ways to make your  exercise consistent is to make it social, and challenge a friend. Gather a few friends together and invite each other out for hikes, walks, and other outdoor activities where you get to socialize while burning calories. You can even challenge one of your friends to my 28-day Fall Fitness Challenge!
  3. Make It Easy To Grab-And-Go
    Mason Jar SaladThe key to healthy eating on a budget is to PLAN IT OUT! When you prepare your meals throughout the week, you keep down both your expenses and preparation time. I like to carve out Sundays as a day to prepare extra chicken breasts and freeze for the upcoming week.During this time, it’s also helpful to chop up veggies for fresh and tasty salads. Put these ingredients in mason jars and store in the refrigerator, so when it comes time to eat your lunch, all you have to do is pull out your pre-cut veggies, put on your chicken breasts, and within a few minutes, your lunch is made!Click here for a few mason jar recipes from the Huffington Post.

Remember, it’s all about progress, not perfection.