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Best Exercises to Get Rid of Love Handles

Updated on August 31, 2010
Photo credit: amrachek on photobucket
Photo credit: amrachek on photobucket

Love handles: this term couldn’t be a bigger misnomer for the person with the extra "love" around their sides.

If you are reading this then you must be tired of your love handles and ready for a new you. Unlike most advertisements, I’m not going to tell you that it is going be easy or quick.

Most people think that they can just work out their oblique muscles (the stomach muscles on your sides) and their love handles will just melt away.

In order to truly get rid of your love handles you need to commit to a new routine.

This routine isn’t just doing crunches; it also involves evaluating what you eat and what kind of activities you engage in. It may be difficult to make a change initially - but it will be well worth it!

For instance you may eat fast food regularly and think that by giving it up will be a punishment for you. In reality, you can eat the foods you want in moderation and instead think of them as a treat. In the long run you will be happier. You will enjoy your treats more than you did before, and you will be happy that you are losing your love handles.

A New Routine For a New You

Yes, you will need to do stomach exercises to tone your obliques, but you also need to work on your whole body to burn off the fat. Cardio exercises are the best way to burn fat. Cardio can be as easy as going for a run, bike ride or brisk walk.

Cardio can be fun too; you can take a dance class at a gym, or have a dance party right in your own house if you don’t want to spend money. The important thing is that you get your body moving.

More than likely you are consuming way more calories than you are burning each day. The way to lose fat is to burn more calories and yes to consume fewer calories. Another way to burn calories is to eat smaller meals, and this doesn’t mean starving yourself. Just by eating smaller meals 5 times a day can really raise your metabolism.

Your new routine also needs to include eating healthier. Nowadays it is so much easier to find healthy foods that taste great. That being said, be sure to read labels, since some “healthy” prepared food is actually worse for you than regular prepared food. It is best to eat lots fruits, vegetables, protein and fiber. Try to prepare your own meals. The Internet is full of quick and easy low fat recipes. If you know what you’ve put in them you’ll know how healthy they are. Plus cooking tends to make you less hungry. Smelling all of the food cooking sends signals to your brain and decreases your hunger.

If you have a sweet tooth try adding honey to your diet. Honey is very sweet and is actually very healthy for you.

5 Awesome Oblique Exercises

Oblique Crunch:

  1. Lie on the floor with your legs bent, and your feet flat on the floor.
  2. Put your hands behind your head, or instead, cross your arms in front of your chest.
  3. Lift your left shoulder off the ground, and move your left elbow towards your right knee.
  4. Hold there for a moment.
  5. Return slowly to the starting position.
  6. Repeat steps 3 and 4 for the opposite side.
  7. Do these crunches until you can’t do any more.

For a more advanced exercise keep your legs bent at a 90-degree angle so that your shins are parallel to the ground. When you twist your left shoulder to your right knee kick out your left leg, and vice versa. This exercise is also called the Bicycle Crunch.

Twisted Leg Raises:

  1. Lie on your back, with your arms stretched out to your sides, and palms facing down.
  2. Raise your legs upward with knees slightly bent, so that your body almost forms an “L” shape.
  3. Slowly lower your legs to the right side, so that your right, outer thigh touches the ground.
  4. Now bring your legs back up and slowly lower them down to the left, until your left outer thigh touches the ground.
  5. Continue doing this exercise until you can’t do any more.

Full Body Extensions:

These exercises are focused on your back, and will help you keep balance when working on losing your love handles.

  1. Lie on your stomach and raise your head up slightly (extending your neck muscles).
  2. Place your arms next to your sides.
  3. Lift your feet and knees off the floor for as long as you can hold it. For a more advanced version, when your knees and feet are off the ground kick your legs like you are swimming.
  4. Hold for as long as you can, and do as many reps as you can.

Knee Raises:

  1. Sit on a bench, so that only your bottom is on the seat and not your thighs.
  2. Hold on to the edge of the bench tightly.
  3. Extend your legs straight out in front of you.
  4. Bend your knees and pull them toward your chest.
  5. Squeeze (flex) your abs at the same time.
  6. Hold this position for 2 seconds.
  7. Repeat this exercise until you can’t do any more.

Standing Twist:

This exercise is not only good for toning your obliques but is also a good cardio exercise.

  1. Stand with your feet shoulder width apart with your knees relaxed.
  2. Twist your torso to the right, and keep your hips and legs as stable and forward facing as possible. When you twist to the right swing your left arm in front of your body in a punching motion.
  3. Twist your torso back to the left and swing your right arm in front your body in a punching motion.
  4. Do this 100 times.

Stay Motivated

The most important thing you can do is to set realistic goals. Don’t expect to lose your love handles in one week. It took your body a while to get to where it’s at, so it will take some work to get into shape.

You can do it!

Stick at it and you will see results. Some people do better when exercising with a friend, as it is easy to stay motivated with another person there.

Keep a diary of your new routine; include what you eat, what exercises you do, and all of your achievements that you’ve accomplished. Be proud of yourself, stay positive and you will reach your goals.


The information given in this hub is not a substitute for professional medical prevention, diagnosis, or treatment. Please consult with your physician, pharmacist, or health care provider before taking any home remedies or supplements. Only your health care provider, personal physician, or pharmacist can provide you with advice on what is safe and effective for your unique needs or diagnose your particular medical history.


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    • renee21 profile image


      3 years ago

      This is some pretty good advice. I like it that you said it takes not just ab exercise, but also cardio and diet. I am currently working on my stomach. It is slowly shrinking back to normal. Great hub!

    • YogaKat profile image


      4 years ago from Oahu Hawaii

      Great advice here. Diet and cardio . . . very important. Love your standing twist exercise and twisted leg raises. Voted up, useful and interesting.


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