What’s the best ways for women to lose their potbelly?

So you just cannot get rid of that potbelly?

There are truly best ways for women to get rid of their potbelly, even if they have been trying for a long time to trim that gut.

Belly Bigger than It Should Be for the Rest of Your Body

I’m not talking about obese women here, but rather, smaller women who just happen to have a potbelly — a midsection that’s out of proportion to the rest of their body — one that’s just too plump, given the size of the rest of their physique.

A major mistake that some women make is blaming their paunch on pregnancies.

I don’t mean soon after a pregnancy. Obviously, recovery time and “rebound” time are necessary following giving birth.

But I’ve known women who blame pregnancies of well over a decade ago, even several decades ago, on their plump stomachs.

Interestingly, these women’s potbellies have grown in the years following their last pregnancy!

Don’t blame pregnancies.

A woman should review her exercise habits, especially if she’s over 30.

If a woman has not been strength training, then beginning at around age 30, she starts losing muscle mass.

This slows the metabolism, and guess what the result is: increasing amounts of fat in the belly. And often elsewhere, too.

The more muscle a woman has, the faster her resting metabolic rate.


And the faster the resting metabolic rate, the less stored fat there will be in the belly.

Thus, a very important move for ridding the potbelly is strength training — and hard.

Light weights and high reps won’t cut it — though novices should initially do light weights and a rep range of 12 to 15 to acclimate their sedentary body to this new form of exercise.

But eventually the protocol should be eight to 12 reps, with those last few reps very difficult to complete.

Some sets should go to muscle failure: when the muscle being worked, just plain poops out and can’t budge for even one more repetition.

A true eight to 12 rep max means that you’ll feel the effort required from the first few reps. You should NOT be able to get past 12 reps.

Strength train all the major muscle groups, with emphasis on the upper legs, glutes, back and chest, because the largest muscle groups will burn the most fat — including fat in the belly.

This means hard leg workouts will burn fat in the belly; hardworking legs need fuel for recovery from hard exercise.

  • Body fat is unused fuel.
  • If your belly is loaded with fat, your legs will take from that fat, and hence, you will start losing your potbelly.

“Won’t lots of crunches trim my stomach?”

Spend minimal time on abdominal exercises. Please, the myth is over: Lots of crunches and sit-ups will NOT get rid of a potbelly.

Potent Fat Burner

In addition to intense strength training, do cardio — high intensity interval type.

This creates an “after burn” that regular long duration cardio doesn’t.

Example: On your favorite cardio machine, instead of setting the controls for a steady duration for 60 minutes, blast out your fastest effort, or use the hardest pedal tension, for one minute.

Then go easy for one minute. Do this back and forth for 20 to 25 minutes straight, two or three times a week on non-strength training days. A woman will start losing her potbelly this way.

What about diet?

“Watch your refined and processed carbohydrate intake if you’re looking to lose that potbelly,” says Sara Artigues, a registered dietician and certified personal trainer out of New Orleans.

“Insulin resistance is a huge health issue that can increase weight, especially around the midsection.

“When you eat too many sugary and processed carbohydrates, they can cause an imbalance in insulin and promote fat storage.

“Cut down on your sodium intake. Sodium causes water retention, so your body holds in excess fluids and can leave you bloated.”

Summary of Best Ways for a Woman to Get Rid of Her Potbelly

Strength train with heavy enough weights to make more than 12 repetitions impossible.

Engage in high intensity interval cardio on your favorite equipment or outdoors.

Try to avoid refined (white flour-based) carbohydrates; fill up on fruits and nuts.

Have a nourishing breakfast.

Don’t go more than three hours without food.

Drink plenty of water throughout the day.

Consider replacing sugary sweets with those sweetened naturally with the herb Stevia — which contains zero calories and can be part of your belly trimming plan.

Lorra Garrick is a former personal trainer certified through the American Council on Exercise. At Bally Total Fitness she trained women and men of all ages for fat loss, muscle building, fitness and improved health. 
Sara’s training services include fitness/body composition assessments, nutrition planning, customized programs and spin class instruction for a variety of clients.