If you thought only crunches can give you washboard abs, think again. Here are some fat-burning exercises that are even better.Losing fat on the belly is the hardest, they say. And when you want to strengthen your core and lose the flab, most probably what comes to mind are crunches and sit-ups. But recent research has found that exercises that are meant for the whole body can actu-ally workout the core muscles better than the designated exercises for your abs.Strengthening your core muscles is impor-tant — because a fat belly can lead to many lifestyle diseases, while a flat one not only takes care of all that, but invariably, makes look you attractive too. These exercises are a different take on familiar ones. Each of these moves stimulates and tightens the core muscles while burning calories.Dumb-bellsTake an exercise mat and sit on it. Now stretch your feet out in front of you. Keep them around three feet apart. Take a pair of dumbbells in your hands and hold them near your shoulders. Keep your back straight. Contract your stomach muscles and push your arms straight up. Return to the starting position and repeat ten to 15 times.Cheers for the chairTake a chair and sit on it while keeping your spine straight. Hold the edge of the seat. Now engage your core and use the stomach muscles to bring your toes (pointing to the floor) two to four inches off the floor. Hold for at least three to five seconds then lower your feet down. Repeat for a few minutes.Try this outBegin this one by standing with your feet apart — a little more than hip-width apart. Take a dumb-bell and hold it at chest level with both hands. Now, while you bend your knees, lower yourself. Go as far as you can — your elbows should be inside your knees. All the while, work your abdominal mus-cles, contract them, and use that strength to lower your butt. Keep repeating these squats at least 10-1 5 times.Lunge!This is a lunge with a slight variation. Begin by standing with your feet together. Lunge back with your right leg as you bend your knees at right angles. Now reach right hand to left foot. Then go back to standing posi-tion. Now, lunge the right leg back and do the exercise again. After ten repetitions, switch sides.Push-upsThis one is a variation of push-ups. Go to the beginning position (see the picture below). Now slowly lift your right arm and touch your left shoulder with your right hand. Then go back to touching the floor. Now, do the same with your other arm — left arm and right shoul-der and back on the floor. Then, touch your left hand to your right thigh, and go back to the main position. Then touch your left thigh with your right arm. Repeat all four touches at least five to eight times each.Squat for strengthBegin your squat, arms akimbo, and get both your knees bent at 90 degrees. Generally squats are considered to be an important exercise for developing core strength while working the legs and buttocks. Now, engage your core muscles to push your body up to the starting position. The thrust you need to raise your body up will work to burn your stomach fat. Do this at least eight to 10 times for each leg.
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