Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Flatten that tummy!

Most of the emails I get I skim, but every now and then, one arrives that catches my eye. And an exercise you can do to flatten your stomach while driving -- who can resist that?

It came from former fatty Jon Benson, who has capitalized on his weight-loss success the all-American way: he sells himself and his products. But he also gives some great advice, like this tip he got from a good friend of his, Mike Geary, described by Benson as a Certified Nutrition Specialist and Certified Personal Trainer.

The exercise comes with this disclaimer: Be sure it doesn't distract you from driving safely. I tried it yesterday -- on our day trip around Connecticut visiting wineries -- and it's not as easy as it sounds. My tummy got really tired, which says a lot about the shape I'm in.

According to Geary, this exercise does not increase fat burning, but it can help flatten your stomach by strengthening the deeper transversus abdominis muscles, pulling in a lazy stomach, aka beer belly or pooch belly.

He calls them ab vacuums, and you can do them standing, seated, kneeling in a four-point position or lying flat on the floor. Guess that means you can do them anywhere.
  1. Start by inhaling deeply.
  2. Then, as you exhale, start pulling in the belly button in towards the spine.
  3. Hold it for 10-20 seconds while just taking short breaths.
  4. Repeat for several holds.

Now all I have to do is remember to do them.....

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