Yes, those unsightly fat rolls can become a firm, flat stomach. It does not come easy; there are no quick ways for this transformation to happen. It takes dedication on many levels including changing your diet, exercising and toning your abdominal muscles. Straying on any level will lessen your chances of transforming your fat rolls into the washboard stomach you desire.
Change Your Diet
According to personal trainer, Wendy Cole, the combination of diet and exercise is the key to successfully losing weight. This makes changing your diet one-half of the equation needed to transform fat rolls to a tight and toned tummy. Stop eating refined foods high in sugar and saturate fats. Replace them with vegetables, fruits and lean meats. Just eating the right foods is not enough of a change to your diet.
Watch Those Calories
Your body requires a certain amount of energy to perform daily tasks. How many calories depends on many factors, including your daily activities and body type. Eating more calories than your body needs to make it through your day causes excess calories to store as fat. This increases the size of the fat rolls surrounding your midsection. Therefore, to lose weight you must create a caloric deficit. Do not attempt to stop eating to lose weight faster -- this is unhealthy and slows down your metabolism, causing your body to burn fat slower. Shoot for eating 500 calories less than you need to shed roughly one pound of fat per week.
Now that you are losing weight by maintaining a caloric deficit, you need to build some muscle. According to MayoClinic.com, muscle increases your metabolism. A higher metabolism means your body will burn more calories, even while watching TV. You do not have to bulk up to the size of a professional bodybuilder, just enough to burn fat. Perform cardiovascular exercises -- jog, swim or bike ride to increase your heart rate and get your muscles working. This burns calories and prepares your body for plyometrics, which is a more demanding group of exercises. Plyometrics use jumps, pushups and plank exercises to push your large muscle groups beyond standard cardiovascular work.
Work Your Abs
As you lose weight, you will want defined, firm abdominal muscles. Two main muscle groups contribute to a flat stomach. The rectus abdominis runs down the front of your stomach. Your obliques wrap around your sides. Making these muscles strong will not only create a flat stomach after you lose the "spare tire," it will tighten your midsection, making your unfit tummy look slimmer.
Lynda Schwartz is a fitness professional who began writing in 2004. She has contributed to "Women's Day" and "Good Housekeeping" magazines, as well as covered fitness and well-being for online publications. Schwartz holds a bachelor's degree in exercise science and health promotion.