How to Workout Love Handles and Lose Back Fat

Jeff Baldelli
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Lose Body Fat!

Want to lose body fat in general?

That’s great, because we’ve got you covered.

Our weight loss section includes a variety of articles on how you can make this year the year you finally lose that weight and keep it off.

Just in case you’re curious, we’re going to list the best weight losing exercises right here. These, after all, are the most efficient exercises for burning fat.

While our weight lifting section does a great job helping you build muscle and get stronger, it doesn’t really focus on getting you in shape for the beach or getting you ready for that shirtless selfie you have planned.

Yet that’s what we want, because we’re not here to waste people’s time with boring and ineffective routines.

Luckily, our weight training guide is a quick and effective method for both building muscle and losing weight.

The full guide is pretty dense, but we recommend checking out the full article if you want to build muscle, get stronger and gain mass, and in the process lose weight.

This is a great way to get your whole body in shape and have you looking fabulous in no time.

You don’t have to have hours and hours of time to workout, either. Just get up earlier, grab a cold juice and watch Rocky or something.

Once you’re done with our weight training guide, make sure to take a look at our beginner’s workout and try to do it at least once a week.

Oh, and before you ask, our workout plan uses free weights, not machines. Why? Because free weights are far superior to machines.

Workout Basics

If you’ve ever questioned whether or not you should do pull ups in your workout, how pull ups can benefit muscle building, or whether pull ups are a good idea to include in your workout, then you’ve come to the right place.

We’ll do our best to help you figure out beginner pull ups, whether it’s the best way to workout your lats or to get abs.

How to eat to lose back fat aka “love handles”

Male and female love handles also known as “back fat” are pesky areas of fat around the waistline. Very few people are immune when it comes to this type of fat, but if you are skinny overall, you may just have a harder time with a rocking a low body fat percentage.

Before you dive in to the many different methods of reducing back fat, let’s look at the different measurements of fat.

How do I measure my love handles?

You probably already know your BMI (body mass index), which is a great starting point for measuring your health and fitness level. You might be surprised to find out that your BMI can be misleading when viewed alone. Maybe you look great, but your body fat percentage is high. The most common way to measure your body composition is to calculate your body fat percentage.

Body fat percentage is calculated using a fat measuring device.

Measure your fat free mass, or lean muscle.

Measuring lean muscle mass is the scientific way to measure your muscle strength and endurance. This is done with the use of body composition measuring techniques such as:

  • semi-electrical impedance
  • underwater weighing
  • hydrostatic weighing
  • dual X-ray absorptiometry

These methods are used by medical researchers and doctors to track and measure muscle strength in patients, pregnant mothers, new mothers, or athletes. For example:

  • Dual X-ray absorptiometry (DXA) captures images of body composition
  • Hydrostatic weighing looks at your mass and volume of water
  • underwater weighing weighs you in water

You are basically made up of water, protein, and fat. Although your body is constantly breaking down your body fat and protein, it doesn’t always build you up. That’s the misconception of protein.

Lean muscle mass is made up of protein, called amino acids, which build up your muscle fibers. These amino acids (or protein) are found in fish, poultry, meat and some dairy products. Fat free mass is made up of water (hydrogen and oxygen) and protein.

You keep lean muscle mass when you do weights, strength training, or cardiovascular training. You will lose lean muscle mass if you are inactive.

When does muscle mass stop increasing?

What Exercises NOT to do if you want to minimize love handles

Walking and jogging are two exercises that are often recommended for burning fat. And indeed, by doing these activities, you will burn calories, but do a double-take when they are recommended as a primary method to lose back fat and love handles.

Why?

Because walking and jogging are performed at a light intensity level, they will not burn the fat sitting on top of the love handles. To get rid of this fat layer, you will need to work out at a high intensity level for a longer period of time.

High intensity exercise means that you exercise at a level where you are somewhat breathless and somewhat sweaty, but not completely exhausted. This is what you want to aim for.

Since you should be in an oxygen deficit, your body will rely mainly on fats for energy. The best types of exercises to get rid of love handles and lose back fat are the ones that exercise multiple large muscles groups at the same time, like weight lifting and stair climbing. Other things that are beneficial are exercises that work all muscles at the same time like Squats, pull ups and push ups. When you work all of the muscles at the same time you activate your slow twitch muscle fibers which then results in greater muscular growth and increased definition.

Getting Started

The first thing you should do is to trim the fat. I mean, literally. If you have really excess fat hanging around your belly then that probably won’t disappear unless you get rid of it first. It’s like trying to boil a pot of water, you can’t do it unless the water boils.

The simplest way, and the fastest, to lose fat is with proper dieting.

When I say dieting, I really mean eating right. You need to make sure that you reduce your calories and start eating healthier.

Here are just a few (out of many) mistakes people make:

{1}. Cutting down on the amount of calories you consume.
{2}. Cutting down your carbohydrates and protein.
{3}. Cutting down on the amount of calories you burn during exercise.

If you are cutting down on the calories you consume, you are reducing the amount of food you have available to burn your fat with.

If you cut down your carbohydrates, not only will your energy level be low, but you will create a bad cycle.

What Exercises DO work to get rid of love handles?

As the name suggests, love handles are the areas directly above your hips, particularly the areas to each side of the spine. This fat deposit is not just physically unattractive, it’s also unhealthy. Love handles contribute to further weight gain and can increase your risk of heart disease.

In order to lose your love handles, there are two key components you need to focus on: your diet and your exercise routine.

In terms of exercise, it’s important to note that you cannot target a certain area of fat. However, you can lose weight off of your whole body. Research has demonstrated that you can lower your overall body fat percentage by decreasing your overall body fat, not just the fat deposits in one particular part of your body.

Therefore, just as the best exercises for building muscle do not directly target the leg muscles but instead work your muscles into shape, the best exercises for losing fat are not isolated to one specific area.

Exercise, however, increases your sensitivity to insulin, a hormone released by the pancreas that moves glucose from the blood into the cells for use as energy.

How? By balancing your blood sugar level and making your body metabolize fat more efficiently, specifically in the areas of your body with the stubborn fat deposits.

For example: If a healthy meal of meat, fresh vegetables, and a complex carbohydrate like brown rice is considered 100%, then something high in saturated fat like chocolate cake is considered 170%, and unhealthy processed foods are considered even higher.

The answer then to losing fat is simply to eat a healthy, well-balanced diet. But that’s easier said than done.

In fact, any energy you consume in a single day is stored as fat unless your body can burn it off, which can happen through exercise or digestion. This means it’s much easier to get fat than to lose it.

The bad news is that once you’re overweight, you’ll need to work harder than someone with a normal weight to lose the weight.

For example: Let’s say you eat 2000 calories and you’re a man. If, on average, you burn 400 calories per day, that means you’re storing 1600 calories per day of surplus energy.

The bottom line?

Interval training can be done at any time with just a few minutes to spare. But the best part is that it’s fun. That means it doesn’t feel like you’re missing out on your favorite TV show, social media, or meaningful talk with your significant other.

You also don’t need any equipment or any space to do the exercises. What’s more, you can easily adapt the intervals to fit your fitness goals. Want to build some muscle? Increase the weight or resistance. Looking to lose some weight? Increase the number of reps and the intensity of the intervals.

This means that as little as 10 minutes of interval training can deliver results unimaginable in many other forms of cardio.

Use Heavy Weights for a Difference You Can Actually See

Take your time with weight training: It will give you a lean, tightening effect, and while the metabolic effect of interval training is great, this is a longer-term diet solution.

Use heavier weights: Weights should be heavy enough that you feel like you could not do another repetition.

Slowly speed up the weightlifting movement to about half the speed that you think will allow you to complete 12 repetitions.

Then, perform and complete all 12 repetitions in 30 seconds.

Rest for about 30 seconds.

Repeat this cycle until you have completed 10 repetitions of each exercise.

This interval time should be kept low enough so that you have just enough energy left to perform a full set of each exercise.

The whole workout should take you about 12 minutes.

Weight Training

Weights should be heavy enough that you feel like you could not do another repetition.

Slowly speed up the weightlifting movement to about half the speed that you think will allow you to complete 12 repetitions.

Increase the Training Intensity with Interval Training

In order to continue to benefit from your exercise program, you will need to design a workout program that will force your body into the improved and greater ability to do work. The best way to force your body into this mode is to create an interval program. This is why all Champions do interval training.

An interval program forces metabolic adaptation, as it is expressed in better performance. In other words, besides losing weight, an interval program builds greater athletic and muscular ability.