I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard the saying “how can I lose my belly?” “what exercises are the best to help me lose my belly?” “can you give us more stomach work?”
If your goal is to lose weight from around your stomach, your not going to do it with lots of stomach crunches! Carrying weight around the abdomen area is linked to nutrition and hormones, namely your carbohydrate intake and your cortisol levels (fat production around the stomach is a sign of over production of cortisol), the stress hormone. Stress levels need to remain as low as possible, depending on what type of stress you may have.
The best way to combat this is to reduce your carbohydrate intake, follow a good diet high in lean protein, green leafy vegetables and dark fruits (berries for example) - best time to eat your fruit is during the 2 hours post training.
Have a good wind down procedure before going to sleep, lower the lights, read, stop watching TV, if you have any electrical items plugged in where you sleep remove them - this will make a difference to your sleep and weight loss believe it or not! Leave the mobile phone out of the room where possible - don't sleep with it at the bed side as the electro magnetic forces can disturb our sleep. You should to be getting to sleep at around 10pm and waking at 6.30am in a completely dark room.
Drink plenty of water and reduce your caffeine as this will stimulate the already overworked adrenal glands, Choose peppermint, ginger and green tea instead.
If you are suffering from any work/relationship/parental stress then gentle breathing exercises or meditation may help.
Take a good quality omega 3 supplement with every meal
Other supplements that might help:
Licorice Root - this can help regulate the production of cortisol.
A good quality multivitamin
Betain hydrochloride taken with 1 or 2 meals could aid with nutrient absorption because for some people it also causes a digestion issue.
Carrying weight in your lower stomach might also be a slight postural problem too, your pelvis might be tilted forward slightly (anterior pelvic tilt), exercises that activate and work the core, stretch the hip flexors and work the glutes to bring your pelvis back might also help.
Forward Lunges/split squats x 15 each leg
Plank x 30 seconds to 1 minute
Side Plank x 30-45 seconds each side
Supine bridges x 15 (on one leg when more advanced)
repeat 3-5 times per week
So answer to the question – clean up your nutrition, look after those hormones and concentrate on postural correction through the correct exercise choice.