Unless you're willing to resort to liposuction, the excess fat around your waistline isn't going to disappear overnight. To get a flat tummy and smaller waist, some effort and lifestyle changes are required. Not only will you look and feel better, having less fat around your middle can improve your health. According to Harvard Medical School, it reduces your risk of medical conditions, such as Type 2 diabetes, high cholesterol, certain cancers, heart disease and hypertension. Use these health benefits as added motivation to make effective changes.
Start a full-body workout routine that contains cardiovascular exercise and strength training. Avoid focusing solely on stomach exercises, because spot reduction isn't possible -- exercises, such as situps and crunches, only strengthen your abdominals and don't whittle away fat. The American Heart Association recommends doing at least 150 minutes of moderate cardio per week and including two days of strength training.
Write down everything you eat on a daily basis to get an idea of how many calories you consume. Keep in mind that there are 3,500 calories in one pound of fat. So creating a caloric deficit of 500 calories every day will have you 1-pound lighter by the end of the week.
Remind yourself to stand upright and to stop slouching, because good posture can eliminate belly rolls and make you look slimmer. Pull your shoulders back, stick out your chest, push your tush back and slightly suck in your tummy. Look confident and proud.
Watch what you eat and how you eat it, because certain foods can bloat your tummy, making it look bigger than it actually is. Chew your food very well so it's easier to digest. Avoid eating high-sodium foods including table salt and soy sauce, because these trigger bloating -- if you must have salt, choose kosher or natural sea salt, which are lower in sodium.
Include the stomach vacuum in your exercise routine. According to chiropractor David T. Ryan of Bodybuilding.com, this exercise can take 2 to 4 inches off your waist in three weeks. Stand upright and fully exhale while pulling your navel toward your spine. Use your abdominals to keep your tummy pulled in, and breathe as normal for 20 seconds. Do three sets on three non-consecutive days of the first week. Repeat this the second week, holding your tummy in for 40 seconds, and suck your tummy in for 60 seconds during the third week.
Reduce stressors in your life, because stress triggers the release of cortisol in your body. Cortisol increases your appetite for fatty, sugary foods. The weight you gain settles around your waist where it's near your liver in case it needs to be converted to energy.