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About two months ago I decided that I want live a more active lifestyle and get back to the weight and fitness level I used to be at.

Issue

I have been doing cardio in the form of uphill hiking (40 mins uphill and 20 mins running back down) almost every day going at a steady pace and keeping my heart rate up to the point where my forehead is almost dripping with sweat and my the back of my t-shirt is soaked from sweat for the past 1.5 - 2 months and my beer belly hasn’t gone down at all.

I can feel myself getting fitter but just not losing the beer belly.

I have read that visceral fat is harder to get rid of than subcutaneous fat but I would have expected to lose at least a little bit.

Before I started exercising my waist was 103.5 and now its roughly still the same at 105.3 cm.

This is my belly today:

my belly

Diet

I eat a bowl of cereal (no sugar) for breakfast and mainly red meat with veges for dinner so I am almost certain that my calorie intake isn't over the top. I don't snack during the day either.

Liquid Intake

I used to drink quite a lot of alcohol so I guess this is where I got my beer belly from, I stopped drinking and replaced that with coke and since roughly two months ago I only drink Coke Zero which has no calories. I drink about 2 liters a day to fix my sugar craving from the real coke.

I know I should be drinking more water and the next step is to quit coke zero and go onto water.

Life Style

I am a software developer so I am sitting most of the day until I go for my hike.

Question

Could this be related to drinking too much coke zero even though it contains no calories?

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    Site rules prohibit us from offering personal medical advice, so what you should be doing is off the table. I edited your question to try and salvage it from closure. – Carey Gregory Apr 27 '17 at 4:07
  • Coke Zero is terrible for you. That aside, you need to be doing exercises which target the specific part of your body you wish to improve. At present, merely hiking will only improve your overall stamina, your leg strength, and your lats from swinging your arms. That's it. In order to target your belly you need to do stomach exercises. Try doing situp punches. Lay flat on your back, scoot your feet towards your butt as close as you feel comfortable, hold both your arms up like you are about to punch, sit all the way up, lightly punch with left then right (1-2), then lay back down. Repeat. – Travis J May 4 '17 at 22:43
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    @TravisJ Fat cannot be targeted. Your body will lose fat wherever fat exists and all the targeted exercises in the world won't make a bit of difference. All it will do is tone the underlying muscles, which may help the appearance of a fat abdomen but won't cause any actual fat loss in that area. – Carey Gregory May 27 '17 at 1:21
  • Vote to close as off-topic. Although @CareyGregory tried his best, the question is still too much of a request for personal medical advise, and this cannot be fixed without changing the nature of the question (or basically removing all information but the last sentence). – Narusan Jun 27 '17 at 19:54
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It does not matter what exercise you are doing; you have no influence what fat reservoirs will be targeted. But there are some things which you should do:

  1. Calculate your basal metabolic rate. While there are differences, they are in the range of +- 100 kcal. Being software engineer, multiply it with 1.1 to get your daily calorie requirement without cycling.

  2. Get a good kitchen scale and weigh every.single.thing you are eating. Calculate what you really take in a day. There are no such things as "healthy" foods which you can eat without getting more fat (vegetables are perhaps an exception because you need something like 5-10 kg before you hit your basal metabolic rate). Do not trust your own observations and assessments, eating under controlled conditions proved that people estimate their calorie intake in the wrong direction (fat people too low, thin people too high) with horrific error rates up to 500%. Also include your drinks and sweets into the condition. Even if you won't do scale everything the whole time, at first you need to know what you are really consuming.
    Be aware that your weight is fluctuating because water is stored and released, it could be up to 5 kg. Control your weight every day to check out such fluctuations.
    Be aware that losing weight needs time: 1 kg fat amounts to 7000 cals. If you reduce your necessary intake from 2500 kcal to 1500 kcal (this is much!), you will approximately lose 1 kg per week or 4 kg per month. If you have over 30 kg overweight, it will take a year to get rid off the fat.

  3. Check your blood if you have defiencies in vitamins, mineral nutrients and if your thyroids are ok: blood condition (anemia), iron (ferritine), glucose levels (diabetis) and vitamin D. It explains many problems because if the body was suffering with bad nutrition before it will feel really, really bad if you decrease the intake and make food even more monotonous.

  4. Check if you eat enough proteins. If you exercise, your body needs protein to repair damage and build up muscle, if it is gets not enough protein it will actually destroy muscle mass and replace it with fat because it cannot sustain it. Protein has also the added bonus that the body needs more time to process it so your glucose level is much more steady, it prevents both food cravings if the level drops down and relieves your pancreas from spitting out insulin if the level is too high.

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  • Welcome to Health.SE. Since health is an important topic, the site has a strict policy that all answers should be backed up with reliable references in order to provide the community with the means to assess the merit of the answer, regardless of the reader's background. See this list of reliable sources. If you still have trouble with this, feel free to visit the help center. – Narusan May 30 '17 at 9:14

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