Do Deadlifts Help You Lose Belly Fat?
Deadlifts: lifting the dead. Why dead? Because it refers to some dead weight (that without momentum) picked up from the ground. Trainers added the detail of ‘up to the hip.’
So, yeah: when you lift a certain percentage of your body weight off the ground and bring it to your hip level while standing from a bent position, you are deadlifting!
How do deadlifts help reduce belly fat?
Deadlifts are best known for mobilizing the maximum number of axial (of the trunk) muscles simultaneously. The most common expression used is ‘from toenails to hair follicles.’ Because this is how much deadlifts involve your body and its muscles.
Calories refer to energy, and reducing fat is about balancing the energy. If caloric intake exceeds the expenditure, the body will store the rest as fat. If you have a high-calorie diet, then exercise doesn’t make any sense because you are undoing the workout.
This is a generally known fact, but calories can be burnt in a thousand more ways, right? Even laughing burns calories. Why make such an effort as a strict gym routine, heavy deadlifting, diet plans, and what not?
Laughing may seem to you a more attractive answer to burning calories, and hence fat. But resistance training such as deadlifts builds muscle mass. No fun in saying that strength training replaces fat with muscle.
Is mass being replaced? Why not disappear? Why would I care if there is muscle or fat in a particular region? That’s what I’m undertaking deadly deadlifting for?
You must be familiar with the term spectrum. There’s one extreme, and then there is a median (the central zero or nothing), and then you have another peak. In our dramatic scenario, the presence of fat is one extreme and muscle, the other one. Fat in a region is where health enemies take the exit. Not having fat is not having fat enemies. And guess what? The presence of muscle in that same area is an antidote to your health enemies.
See this, for example, muscle burns calories even when you are at rest, more than the same amount of fat does. Five pounds of muscle burns 25 calories a day. Whereas the same amount of fat hits only 10.
Deadlifting reduces belly fat. That’s it?
When you are building muscle, muscle strength increases, at the same time:
- It reduces the risk of cardiovascular diseases.
- Plasma fatty acids level reduces, which takes your body out of the diabetes-like factors it was dealing with. For example, insulin resistance.
- It increases bone mineral density since now you are using them! Stressing your bines increases the deposition of calcium and phosphate salts.
Your call: the mere absence of fat or presence of muscle (bonus plus) as well!
Isn’t deadlifting doing wonders for you?
Why reduce belly fat anyway?
Is it not okay there?
Your belly fat is doing just fine where it is. It’s you.
- With that in-a-happy-place belly fat, you are exposed to higher risks of cardiovascular disorders. Body Mass Index (BMI) and waist circumference are directly related to the increased risk of developing vascular disease.
- Obesity induces insulin resistance, i.e., your body mimics the symptoms and features of diabetes mellitus type I. Belly fat is even more dangerous since it is purely visceral fat. There is no exclusion of the subcutaneous paddy layer of fat.
- Increased body fat also induces difficult breathing and hence sleep apnea.
- High blood pressure and early death are undeniable.
Just like any other exercise, deadlifts burn calories to generate energy for the body. Specifically talking about belly fat, just the training is not going to be effective. So, it would help if you had a proper diet plan.
Variants of Deadlift
Our dear deadlift is easy-to-go enough to let you go to it and pull on it. But here are some trainer-level terms and ways that can help you target specific muscles. And hence, fat closest to the target muscles.
1. Conventional Deadlift
This variant is recommended for those who are new to deadlifting. It is performed while standing at hip-width apart and hands just outside the feet. Conventional deadlifting focuses on the glutes, calves, forearms, lower back, hamstrings, quads, and traps.
2. Sumo Deadlift
With a sumo deadlift, feet are placed wide apart with hands holding weights between them. It mainly emphasizes the hips and helps you lift heavier loads.
3. Snatch Grip Deadlift
In this variant, you place your hands wide apart on the deadlift and feet at a fair distance. It works the hamstrings and strengthens the pull of the snatch.
4. Deficit Deadlift
In deficit deadlift, you stand on something so that the bar travels a greater distance. This, in turn, makes you travel through a greater range of motion.
5. Block deadlift
As it is the opposite of a deficit deadlift, the bar is placed on a plate to raise it above the ground. This reduces the range of motion and allows you to lift more weight. As a result, it really challenges your nervous system.
6. Dumbbell deadlift
You won’t build up strength with dumbbells, but it helps you learn the exercise. I recommend you do this first before trying deadlifts.
All the praises and accolades to deadlifting and the ‘king of training exercises’ because it makes every muscle of your body move. So, there’s nothing to worry about which variant to go with. These are just to help you go with the favourite!
Are Deadlifts good for Belly Fat only?
Let’s break the myth of spot reduction here. It is impossible to reduce fat in just one spot or a single region of your body. Exercising a particular part does strengthen and build muscle mass in that region. However, it does not assure fat resorption, at least in that area alone. In fact, exercising hits fat all over the body. This is a huge plus point. While reducing belly fat, you are taking everyone down!
This very much slows the process of hitting one area alone. Although you may find mixed evidence on that, focusing on overall body fat is more effective.
Effects of deadlifts on Belly Fat?
How exactly does resistance training such as deadlifts give your body an idea of doing all that it does?
- First of all, the energy demand and use of calories. Glucose, liver glycogen, and then body fat.
- Due to the stretch of muscles involved, muscle fibres elongate and also increase in number.
- Exercise stimulates increased blood levels of anabolic hormones such as growth hormone. This ultimately leads to fat replacement with muscle.
- With increased muscle mass, the muscle begins to give its gold benefits that we discussed above.
Can I help deadlifts with what they are doing?
- You can reduce sugar and fat in your diet. Sugar, since it loads the liver with fructose, raises plasma fatty acid levels.
- You can maintain a healthy sleep routine. This will help your body maintain blood levels of hormones that deadlifts stimulate.
- Replace carbs with proteins and fats with healthy omega-3 fats only. And that too in minimum amounts.
Perfect deadlifting routine
You may need a trainer for that. So that he nay evaluate the training duration and intensity according to your body weight and lifestyle.
You can go with a weekly program: mild deadlifting in the first week, intensity increases the next week, and you take a calm breath the third week.
All this with alternations of deadlifting variants and proper diet and sleep routine. And you are ready to go! (the belly fat, of course).
Best Exercises/Training for Belly Fat Loss
Here we come with exercises and training that are deemed best for belly fat loss. And which you can go with to complement your deadlifting sessions. You may choose some of them for your pre-and post-training warmup.
When it comes to belly fat burning, crunches are considered to be the most effective exercise.
Here is the procedure. Bend your knees. With your feet on the floor, lay down flat and put your hands crossed on your chest. Rise to your knees with your back straight, and repeat.
2- Walking or running
A daily walk of 25-30 min is useful for reducing belly fat. Walking makes you agile and refreshes the mind. So, it’s not just a treat for your belly. Invite your neighbour and go for a walk while having a fun chat.
3- Cardio exercises
Aerobic or cardio exercises are all equally beneficial for the enemy at hand: belly fat. Here are some:
- Jump rope
- Squat jumps
Difficult but effective, planking makes your abs show up. The overall position is as if you are doing pushups. With forearms on the floor and elbows below the shoulders, you are just ready to hit the fat. Remain in this position for about 20 sec. Twenty seconds seem easy, but it is not.
Deadlifts are recommended to all whether or not belly fat is there to bother you. This owes to the myriads of health benefits that fat reduction and muscle development come with. While working toward belly fat reduction, spot reduction should not be the sole purpose. Instead, one should look forward to maintaining a generally healthy lifestyle.