Is spot reducing effective?
A Spot reducing refers to attempts to lose body fat in specific parts of the body by doing exercises for those parts. Danish researchers have shown that fat use increases in adipose tissue surrounding active muscle, but it is not known if short-term fat use helps reduce fat in specific sites. Most studies show that spot-reducing exercises contribute to fat loss only to the extent that they burn calories. The best way to reduce fat in any specific area is to create an overall negative energy balance: Take in less energy (food) than you use through exercise and metabolism.
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Don’t take it all too seriously. Find the part of yourself that doesn’t need to be the best. Release some of the weight of your achievements from your shoulders. As you feel lighter, slowly blink your eyes open to return to the world.
We have all heard that misery loves company. Joy, however, can also sometimes feel isolating. Do you become one of “those people” who splashes it over social media until even your friends are sick of you? Or do you keep it to yourself, choosing to save only your complaints for public consumption?
We are consistently told not to bottle up our feelings, but guess what? Joy is a feeling. It is not shameful. Meditation is the art of exploring what is, and this includes the splendidly happy times.
The next time you find things are going swimmingly, don’t gloss over it. Don’t tell yourself “this won’t last.” Don’t forecast what your joy will turn into. Joy doesn’t have to be shared to be real. It can be relished and explored, unabashedly.
Take a seat to examine what your joy feels like. Is it an energetic joy, or a mellow contentment? Is it concentrated more in one area of your inner body, or is it spread throughout? Get curious. As with any meditation, if you get distracted, come back to this settled and contented feeling. You may feel your joy increase as you sit, or it may decrease, or it may stay exactly the same. Watch it transmute and evolve within you.