You Can’t Spot Reduce Fat (What You Should Focus on Instead)

Thankfully, I believe more and more individuals are being exposed to the fact that any trainers peddling the idea of “spot reduction” via training are indeed lying.

No, you cannot spot reduce fat. No changes can be made to your diet or training that will influence where your body will choose to utilize bodyfat for energy from.

However, instead of leaving you here hopeless and disappointed upon hearing this fact, here’s what you should focus on instead.

1. Focus on Overall Weight Loss

If you have a “trouble area” that you’d like to see improvement on in terms of fat loss, you solely need to focus on overall weight loss.

You don’t need to use any specific tips, tricks, hacks, or exercises, if you continue to lose weight overtime you will see fat from every part of your body reduce as it is utilized for energy.

Where this fat comes off first is largely up to your individual genetics. This is why some people may complain about fat specifically on their legs, waist, chest, arms, etc. Your body simply utilizes fat from other areas first, and that’s why you may find more fat in a given area of your body.

Rest assured though that as you continue to lose weight your body will have no choice but to utilize fat from these “problem areas” so just keep trucking along.

2. Respect Your Given Body Shape

I find many individuals expect too much from a diet/exercise plan right out of the starting gate and this is the leading reason so many people can end up being disappointed despite making objectively amazing progress with their routines.

There’s only so much “transforming” you can do with fitness. At some point you are going to have to come to terms with the fact that to a large extent your given body shape/type was preselected for you by genetics and that’s okay!

Genetics doesn’t just determine where your body burns fat from, but the shape and size of your bones and muscles as well which largely determines body type/shape.

Take a second to embrace the body that you have been given, THEN focus on making you the healthiest and strongest version of yourself that you possibly can.

3. Select Exercises Based Off What You Enjoy

So…instead of doing 1000s of crunches because you want to burn bellyfat, or arm exercises best you don’t like the fat on your arms, start picking exercises based off the fact that you actually ENJOY them.

You now know you can’t spot reduce the fact, so why stick with exercises and routines you hate for a purpose that isn’t going to serve you.

If you enjoy your exercise routine, you are far more likely to actually do it. The more sessions you get in the healthier and stronger you’re going to become along the way. The healthier and stronger you become the more you’ll like the way you look and not only that the better you’ll FEEL day to day.


Matt Molloy

Matt Molloy

I'm a graduate the University of Pittsburgh with a major in Exercise Science. I’m a local guy (North Penn) and athletics has dominated my life. I've led teams in basketball, baseball, soccer, golf and my passion, long distance running. I've been strength training for 6 years with a focus in power-lifting but have recently stretched to strongman since joining the pride here at the Den. When I’m not in the gym I enjoy, spending time with my friends, music, and relaxing and playing some video games.