Can exercise get rid of cellulite? If so, what sort of exercise is the best and most effective to burn it off? These are common questions asked by many women who want to slim down, get a toned butt and sexy legs. Here are some answers.
What is Cellulite?
It is that lumpy, dimpled look normally found around the thighs, buttocks, abdomen and arms and is sometimes referred to as orange peel skin because of the dimpled appearance. It is most commonly found on women, although men can get it.
What Causes Cellulite?
There are three layers of fat under the skin. The first is called the subcutaneous layer. This is where cellulite forms. The next two layers store excess calories in the form of fat. In the subcutaneous layer there is a fibrous network of tissue, called septae, forming small compartments, where pockets of fat are stored. When cellulite forms, these cells are forced upwards, and the septate downwards. This results in the dimpled appearance.
Is Cellulite Fat?
Scientific studies have now proven that cellulite is more than just fat. A lot of research has been done over the years, dating back to the 1900’s, to understand how cellulite forms and more importantly, how to treat it. The major breakthrough came in the 70’s when Italian anatomo-pathologist and molecular biologist Professor Sergio Curri undertook detailed research into cellulite and proved conclusively that it is not normal fat and should be treated differently.
How Can Exercise Get Rid of Cellulite?
When excess calories are stored in the lower two layers, the subcutaneous layer with pockets of fat stored in the fibrous tissue is pushed upwards, making the dimpled effect more pronounced. The key is to do exercise that targets fat generally, while toning the areas of the body that have cellulite. That will have a two pronged approach. You will take the pressure off the lower two levels of fat pushing the subcutaneous fatty pockets upwards under the skin. Secondly, you will start to tone your muscles, replacing with muscle. As you tone your muscles, your metabolism will also increase, having a positive effect on the burning of calories, as muscle burns more calories than fat just to function.
What type of Exercise is Most Effective To Burn Fat?
This depends on how fit you are when you start your exercise program. Walking is a good way to start any exercise program. Walking with dumbbells gets your heat rate up, improves your cardio-vascular system, tones your leg and arm muscles and burns fat. Check web sites such as Free Weight Loss Exercise Programs to assess your level of fitness and what sort of exercise is most appropriate for you.
As your fitness increases, the best fat burning exercises are those that get your heart rate up to around 65% of your maximum (approximately 220 beats per minute minus your age) for approximately 30 minutes. Studies show that this is the optimum range to burn fat and keep it off.
The most effective types of exercise are the exercise bike, tread-mill, swimming and aerobics. Exercises that allow you to monitor your heart rate are preferred, so you can train in the optimum heart rate range.
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