Does Cardio Burn Belly Fat? [Best Time to Exercise to Lose Fat]

Do you struggle with belly fat and wish there was a simple way to get rid of it? As someone who’s been on a weight loss journey for a while, I can relate to the frustration of trying to target stubborn fat areas. You might have heard that cardio is the answer to your prayers. But does cardio burn belly fat and tone the midsection?

Well, Yes (speaking from experience)! Incorporating cardio into my workout routine reduced the extra baggage from my belly and waistline, and has made a huge difference in my overall health and fitness. Along with shedding unwanted body fat, it also boosted my energy levels and improved my mood. But before you put on your running shoes – there’s more to discuss!

Now, let’s get to know the rivalry between cardio and belly fat and if it really slims down your tummy.

does cardio burn belly fat

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Does Cardio Burn Belly Fat?

No more beating around the bush, let’s get to the meat of the matter. YES, cardio burns belly fat. But wait, there’s a catch!

Cardio isn’t the only factor that contributes to fat loss. To lose belly fat, you need to be in a calorie deficit, meaning you burn more calories than you consume. Cardio can help you create that calorie deficit by burning calories during and after your workout.

And let’s be honest, nobody wants to lose fat and end up looking like a twig. Combining cardio with resistance training can be even more effective for burning belly fat and creating a toned, sculpted look.


Is Cardio the Fastest Way to Lose Weight?

Cardio can definitely help you lose weight, but it’s not necessarily the fastest way.

Rapid weight loss often leads to muscle loss, which can actually slow down your metabolism and make it harder to maintain weight loss in the long run.

Slow and steady wins the race. Aim for a healthy and sustainable weight loss of 1-2 pounds per week by creating a moderate calorie deficit through a combination of cardio, resistance training, and a healthy diet.

However, to feed you an answer, High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) has been proven to be the fastest way to lose weight.


What Exercise Burns the Most Belly Fat?

Let’s talk about the elephant in the room – the exercise that burns the most belly fat. As much as we’d all love for there to be a single exercise that magically melts away belly fat, unfortunately, it doesn’t exist. However, combining cardio and resistance training can be a powerful combination for burning overall body fat and creating a calorie deficit.

Personally, I’ve found that High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) and weight lifting have been the most effective for burning belly fat.

what exercise burns the most belly fat

You know what they say, “work smarter, not harder.” HIIT involves short bursts of high-intensity exercise followed by brief periods of rest, which helps to boost your metabolism and burn more calories in a shorter amount of time.

And resistance training, whether it’s using weights or bodyweight exercises, can help you build muscle mass and increase your metabolism, which burns more calories even when you are not exercising.

So, say goodbye to boring steady-state cardio and hello to sprints, jump rope, and circuit training to burn belly fat and slim down your waistline!

HIIT is also effective to lose weight with Empty Sella syndrome.


Why HIIT is better than Cardio Exercise for Belly Fat?

I can confidently say that High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) is the way to go when it comes to shedding those stubborn pounds. Here’s why:

HIIT involves short bursts of intense exercise followed by periods of rest or lower intensity exercise. This type of workout is designed to get your heart rate up and keep it there, making it an excellent way to burn calories and fat.

Now, you may be thinking, “But isn’t regular cardio exercise also good for burning fat?” And the answer is yes, it is. However, HIIT has been shown to be more effective at burning belly fat than traditional cardio.

what exercise burns the most belly fat for female

According to a study published in the International Journal of Obesity, participants who did HIIT for 12 weeks lost more belly fat than those who did steady-state cardio for the same amount of time. This is because HIIT puts more stress on your body, forcing it to work harder and burn more calories.

Another benefit of HIIT is that it can help you continue to burn calories even after your workout is over. This is known as the “afterburn effect,” and it means that your body continues to burn calories at a higher rate for up to 24 hours after your workout.

But perhaps the biggest advantage of HIIT is that it’s time-efficient. As someone with a busy schedule, I know how hard it can be to find time to exercise. With HIIT, you can get a great workout in as little as 20 minutes. And because it’s so intense, you don’t need to do it every day – two or three times a week is enough to see results.

So, what types of exercises should you be doing during your HIIT workouts? The possibilities are endless, but some of my personal favorites include burpees, mountain climbers, jumping jacks, and high knees. These exercises engage multiple muscle groups at once and can help you burn more calories in a shorter amount of time.

And of course, remember that exercise alone won’t get rid of belly fat. You also need to focus on eating a healthy, balanced diet and getting enough sleep.

Add baked chicken to your diet to strengthen muscles and burn fat.


How Much Cardio per Week to Lose Belly Fat?

Now, let’s talk about how much cardio you should be doing per week to blast that belly fat away.

how much cardio per week to lose belly fat

According to the American College of Sports Medicine, adults should aim for at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity cardio or 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity cardio per week for general health.

But, if you want to really tackle that stubborn belly fat, aim for at least 300 minutes of moderate-intensity cardio or 150 minutes of vigorous-intensity cardio per week. Divide that up into shorter sessions throughout the week and you’ll be well on your way to a six-pack.

Personally, I try to do at least 30 minutes of cardio and other aerobic exercises per day, five days a week. Whether it’s running, cycling, mountain climbing, high jumps, or jumping rope, I make sure to mix it up and keep things interesting. And on days when I’m feeling particularly motivated, I’ll throw in a HIIT workout to really kick things into high gear.


Best Cardio Exercise to Lose Belly Fat at Home

Belly fat has always been a thorn in my side. No matter how many sit-ups I did or how many fad diets I tried, it always seemed to stick around. That is, until I discovered the magic of cardio exercises.

Now, I know what you are thinking – cardio can be boring, tedious, and just plain exhausting. But let me tell you, when it comes to losing belly fat, it’s worth every bead of sweat.

Let me share the best cardio exercises that helped me lose belly fat at home:

Jumping Jacks

fastest way to lose belly fat

One of my favorite exercises to get my heart pumping and my abs burning is jumping jacks. Not only are they a classic throwback to my elementary school gym class days, but they also engage your core muscles and help tone your midsection.

Along with working your legs and arms, jumping jacks also engage your core muscles, making them an excellent exercise for toning your midsection

Plus, in just 15 minutes, a person weighing 150 pounds can burn approximately 153 calories – not too shabby!



If I’m feeling particularly masochistic, I’ll throw in some burpees. Yes, they’re challenging and leave me feeling like a wet noodle afterward, but the results are undeniable.

They work multiple muscle groups at once, including my abs, glutes, and legs, making them an excellent exercise for shedding belly fat.

And according to Harvard Health Publishing, a person weighing 155 pounds can burn approximately 100 calories by doing 10 minutes of burpees – talk about a fat-burning machine!


High Knees

Now, if you are looking for an exercise that will really make you feel the burn, high knees are the way to go. I love doing these because they’re simple, yet effective. All you have to do is stand in place and alternate bringing your knees up to your chest as quickly as you can.

This exercise gets your heart rate up and engages your core muscles, making it a great way to tone your abs. And in just 30 minutes, a person weighing 155 pounds can burn approximately 372 calories – sign me up!


Jump Rope

Of course, no cardio workout would be complete without a jump rope. Jumping rope is a fun and challenging way to burn calories and lose belly fat. It’s a high-intensity workout that engages your entire body, including your abs.

According to the American Council on Exercise, a person weighing 125 pounds can burn approximately 300 calories by jumping rope for 30 minutes. Plus, it’s a great way to relive your childhood – I mean, who doesn’t love jumping rope?


Mountain Climbers

Finally, if you really want to challenge yourself, give mountain climbers a try. This exercise may look simple, but trust me, it’s anything but simple!

To perform it, get into a plank position and alternate bringing your knees up to your chest. It’s a great way to engage your abs and burn calories. And in just 30 minutes, a person weighing 155 pounds can burn approximately 286 calories – not too shabby for a workout you can do at home!

And if you love going out, try hiking for weight loss twice a week.


Best Time to Exercise to Lose Belly Fat

Timing is everything, right? Well, not exactly. The best time to exercise is the time that works best for you according to your schedule.

Some people prefer to knock out their workouts and take fat-burning supplement first thing in the morning to kickstart their metabolism and energize their day. Others prefer to sweat it out in the evening to unwind and distress before bed.

While there are some studies that suggest working out in the morning may help you burn more fat, but the important thing is consistency. Find a time of day that you can stick to and make it a habit.

Just don’t exercise too close to bedtime, or you’ll be counting reps instead of sheep.

For me, I prefer to work out in the mornings before I start my day. It helps me wake up and gives me a boost of energy to tackle whatever comes my way. But if mornings aren’t your thing, don’t worry, find a time that works best for you and your lifestyle.


What Exercise Burns the Most Belly Fat for Females?

Ladies, we all know that we carry more belly fat than males. Hormones, am I right? But fear not, because the same exercises that work for men will work for us too.

But first, understand that spot reduction is a myth. You can’t just target one specific area of your body for fat loss. However, combining cardio and resistance training will burn fat and create a calorie deficit, which is necessary for losing weight and toning up.

best cardio exercise to lose belly fat at home

That being said, here are a few exercises that have been proven to be effective for burning belly fat:

High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT): Studies have shown that HIIT is one of the most effective ways to burn belly fat, especially for women. The short bursts of high-intensity exercise followed by periods of rest can help boost your metabolism and burn calories long after your workout is over.

In fact, one study found that women who did 20 minutes of HIIT three times a week lost more belly fat than those who did steady-state cardio.

Weightlifting: Many women are hesitant to lift weights because they’re afraid of bulking up. However, this is a common myth – women don’t have enough testosterone to build significant muscle mass unless they’re specifically training for it.

Lifting weights or using resistance bands can help you build lean muscle mass, which can help boost your metabolism and burn more calories even when you are at rest.

Resistance training is a MUST for ladies while losing fat because they want to keep boobs while losing weight.

Pilates: Pilates is the most favorite exercise among females these days. This low-impact exercise focuses on building core strength and stability, resulting in achieving a flatter stomach. Pilates exercises like the plank, side plank, and pelvic tilt can help target your abdominal muscles and improve your posture, making your midsection appear more toned and defined.

Yoga: Yoga is a great way to de-stress and improve your flexibility, but certain poses can also help you build core strength and improve your posture. Poses like the boat pose, plank pose, and downward-facing dog can help engage your abdominal muscles and strengthen your core.


Wrapping Up

So, does cardio really burn belly fat? While cardio can certainly help you reduce overall body fat and lose weight, it’s not necessarily the most effective way to target belly fat specifically.

That being said, don’t throw in the towel on your cardio routine just yet. Any kind of exercise is better than no exercise, and cardio can still provide a range of benefits for your health and well-being.

But if you are specifically looking to lose belly fat, you may want to consider incorporating other forms of exercise into your routine, such as HIIT or strength training. And of course, don’t forget the importance of maintaining a healthy diet and lifestyle overall.

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Frequently Asked Questions: (FAQs)

Which cardio burns more belly fat?

Various types of cardio can be effective for burning belly fat. However, it is important to note that the effectiveness of cardio in targeting belly fat specifically depends on multiple factors such as individual body composition, the intensity of the exercise, and the duration of the workout.

It is recommended to incorporate different forms of cardio in your routine, and to focus on overall fat loss through a balanced diet and regular exercise.


Is cardio good for burning belly fat?

Cardio exercise can be highly effective for burning calories and reducing body fat, including belly fat. Cardiovascular exercises, such as running, swimming, or cycling, increase heart rate and oxygen consumption, leading to greater energy expenditure and fat burning.


How much cardio do I need to lose belly fat?

The amount of cardio required to lose belly fat can vary depending on individual goals, fitness level, and body composition.

Experts generally recommend at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity cardio per week for overall health benefits, but a higher volume of exercise may be necessary for more significant weight loss or fat reduction.


Is it OK to do cardio every day?

Sure, if you are a cardio machine and love getting your sweat on every day, go for it! Just make sure to listen to your body and take rest days as needed. And remember, there are other types of exercise (like strength training) that can also help you reach your goals.




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