Let’s face it: Dealing with a thick waistline can be frustrating. If you’re longing for a trimmer midsection, we have some exciting news. We spoke with TJ Mentus, CPT, a certified personal trainer and fitness expert with Garage Gym Reviews, who shares seven powerful exercises to help you lose inches off your waist in 30 days.
While carrying some extra cushion around your abdominal area can be a cosmetic concern, it’s also not doing your health any favors. Excess belly fat spikes your risk of dangerous health conditions, including heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and high blood pressure. That’s why consistently doing movements that help you stay in tip-top shape and drop inches off your waistline is critical for your overall health, well-being, and longevity.
Without further ado, here are Mentus’s seven killer exercises to help you slim down your waistline and boost your health in 30 days flat. Keep reading to learn more, and next up, don’t miss the 5 Best Belly Fat Exercises You Can Do in Just 10 Minutes a Day.
First up on this list of exercises that will help you lose inches off your waist in 30 days is the air bike sprint. Air bike sprints are a high-intensity exercise that torches calories and promotes fat loss. “Sprints are one of the most effective ways to burn fat,” states Mentus. “The high-intensity burst rapidly increases caloric demands while simultaneously requiring muscular strength and power output, preserving the body’s muscles. Utilizing an air bike helps to reduce the impact on the joints while working the full body as the arms are working with the legs.” Aim for 10 minutes of 30-second sprints followed by 30 seconds of rest.
Abdominal exercises like bicycle crunches can be very effective at strengthening your core. This movement also targets your obliques to help chisel a sculpted abdomen. Mentus tells us, “This style of crunches will work the entire core, helping tighten up the midsection. A normal crunch works the six-pack muscles, but a bike crunch involves the obliques, and you twist the shoulders with each rep bringing the knee to the elbow.”
Lie flat on your back, then place your hands by your ears. Twist to the right side with your left elbow. As you twist, bring your right knee to your chest to meet your elbow as your other leg is extended off the ground. Repeat on the other side as you straighten your right leg and keep it off the ground. Perform four sets of 25 bicycle crunches per side.
Kettlebell swings are a dynamic exercise that works your whole body. This movement will engage your core, glutes, upper back, and legs. “Kettlebell swings are a full-body exercise that will jack up your heart rate. The core has to stay tight during the movement as the hips and legs generate the force while the upper body stabilizes the weight and holds onto it,” explains Mentus.
Hold the kettlebell in both hands between your legs. Keep your back flat, and reach the kettlebell back through your legs by pushing your hips back. Keep your arms straight, and aggressively extend your hips, allowing the kettlebell to swing to chest height. Guide the kettlebell back down with your arms, and enter the next rep. Complete eight rounds of 20 seconds of work and 10 seconds of rest.
Combining a squat, plank, and jump, burpees provide a high-intensity cardio workout while activating your abs, obliques, and lower back. “Burpees might be the best bodyweight exercise for burning calories,” says Mentus. “Your arms and legs will be working hard to move your body which will cause the heart rate to elevate quickly. They can also be done anywhere because they’re a bodyweight movement.”
Drop down to the ground, kicking your feet behind you and letting your chest touch. Press your chest off the ground, and hop your feet forward simultaneously. Then, lift your hands off the ground, and jump back up. Do four sets of 10 reps with 30 seconds of rest between sets.
This underrated exercise will engage your entire body and help you build a tapered waistline. Mentus says, “This is a simple high-intensity exercise that allows you to exert as much force as possible when throwing a medicine ball to the ground. Use a medicine ball that isn’t too bouncy and a moderate weight, in the 15 to 20-pound range.”
Start with a medicine ball placed between your feet. Pick the medicine ball up, and bring it fully overhead. Throw the medicine ball back between your feet as hard as possible. Complete five minutes of 30 seconds on and 30 seconds off of medicine ball slams, and see how many reps you can do.
An explosive plyometric exercise that works the lower body and engages the core, squat jumps combine a squat and a vertical jump to boost calorie burn and increase leg strength, leading to a slimmer waistline. “Squat jumps are a great plyometric movement to increase your heart rate and burn calories. Any type of jumping requires a lot of exertion, increasing the heart rate significantly,” says Mentus.
Squat down by sitting your hips back and down while keeping your chest up. Once you’ve reached full depth, explode from the bottom, jumping as high as possible. Land and reset before the next rep. Perform 10 minutes of squat jumps, alternating between one-minute maximum squat jumps and one minute of rest.
The last of these exercises that will help you lose inches off your waist in 30 days is the dumbbell thruster. The dumbbell thruster is a compound exercise that works multiple muscle groups simultaneously, delivering a top-notch calorie torch. “Thrusters are a movement that will fatigue most people quickly,” says Mentus. “They combine a squat with a shoulder press in one motion. This combination requires a lot of energy and muscle power, making them very effective for burning fat.”
Hold a dumbbell in each hand horizontally, with one end of each resting on your shoulders. Perform a squat, keeping the dumbbells upright. Explode out of the bottom of the squat, and simultaneously press the dumbbells overhead. Lower the dumbbells back to your shoulder, and begin the squat for the next rep. Do four sets of 12 to 15 thrusters with a challenging weight with which you can maintain proper form.