T Nation

Stubborn Ab Fat


Being naturally lean, I've never had cause to learn about fat loss. As the resident trainer in my home gym, I don't have the answers my training partner is looking for.

He works out every day, either training for competetive distance running or hitting the weights with me. I know I need more info on his diet, but I do know he is skilled in the kitchen and prepares everything organically and as healthy as possible. He does try to utilize P+C and P+F meals as I have advised him, and does not eat any junk, coffee and does not overeat.

He's got belly fat, which confounds us. He runs constantly and is burning calories left and right. However, even when he was hiking across country and lost tons of weight (he was a hiking skeleton) he still had the belly fat. He is naturally muscular and a sucessful athlete, and no one in his family has an fat at all.

Any info or diets I can pass on to him?


Is he taking Omega-3 fish oil? Proper Pre and Post Workout Nutrition? Before breakfast cardio (i.e. a long walk outside) with a weighted vest has helped me dramatically). It doesn't sound like his workout is the problem, but if he's not losing the belly fat, then more likely than not is the diet.


Spot reduction caveat in mind, a good sprinting program never seems to fail. I'm particularly fond (in a masochistic way) of the Tabata protocol.


His body is doing exactly what he trains it to do. He is training his body to prepare for a long journey (hiking/running) and that requires that the body store fuel (fat) for this journey. If he wants to stop storing fat stop training for it.

Come on, the human body has been doing this for several million years. He isn't going to change the process.



I agree.

Try some sprints (as mentioned above) CLA and Guarana.

Works kinda like magic!


If he sprints he won't be using much fat for fuel, so his body will have no need to store a fuel that isn't needed.
His body will increase its ability to store glycogen which is what he will be using when he sprints. Specific Adaptation to Imposed Demands. Now to convince this dude that his love with running is part of the cause of his stubborn ab fat.



That he was training hisself to store fat was my primary suspicion.

Sprinting probably won't work; we're talking about guy who could do a sprint workout in his sleep.

His training is frequent and intense, his diet is normal, he doesn't have bad genetics. So it leads one to look at the constant distance running, which was reintroduced after hiking around starving for 6 months.


Look @ Cosgrove's complex programs. Running long distance sucks for fat loss. Look at sprinters, then look at marathoners. Sprinters have the far more impressive physique. Alwyn Cosgrove wrote up a workout with complexes...they are flat out killer, but they will take whatever fat you have on off. And tell him to lay off the running long distance for awhile.


Running long distance is bad for fat loss? Since when. I looked at those marathoners you told me to, and they werent fat. Losing fat and keeping muscle on the other hand, then LDR is bad for you. The sprinters have more impressive physiques because they dont have to worry about carrying extra weight like marathoners do.

As for losing the fat... Is he supplimenting with anything? Have you told him about HOT-ROX?




Could be high levels of cortisol. Excess stress, not enough sleep, excess exercise could contribute to this by raising cortisol levels.

Getting more sleep, cutting down at least temporarily on exercise, getting more vitamin C, and attempting to reduce stress can help. Eating more frequently (i.e. increasing from 3 to 5 or 6 meals a day) is shown to reduce cortisol, and so has meditation.


What medication? Not the crap stuff on infomercials. As far as prescription medication, I'd definitely consult a doctor first. Cortisol has its important purposes. I wouldn't mess with it unless there's something seriously worn.g


lol, he said mediTation not mediCation



Medication - drugs.

Meditation - relaxation and calming the mind.

Masturbation - popular hobby.



haha. Bad reading; sorry


Yup. Sad news, but distance runners store more fat than sprinters. They HAVE to. They need it for fuel for long distances. I worked with a female marathoner that was 29% BF.