The Workout that Targets Problem Areas Part II

The workout that targets problem areas Part 2

Everyone has that region or body part they wish was a little tighter, rounder, firmer, bigger or smaller.

Butt, thighs, stomach, arms… these four body parts make it onto the list time and again. To fix these “problem areas”, many have fallen prey to claims and promises over the years about spot-reducing fat and fixing problem areas.

Is spot reduction possible?

The body does not lose fat in one particular area exclusively, it loses fat across the whole body in a pattern dependent on age, sex, hormones and genetics. While there are ways to train and eat optimally for the hormonal element in fat loss, and therefore affect the pattern of fat loss, your age, sex and genetics are set in stone.

fitness mag shop

So it is of paramount importance to realise that in order to lose fat on the thighs, for instance, you will be losing fat all over simultaneously, and in order to lose fat all over you will need to eat and train in a way that makes this the most efficient and successful. This would include strength training – and preferably big, compound movements that utilise the most muscle – cardiovascular exercise and a smart, clean diet.

Kelly Dessington, co-owner and trainer at Progressive Edge in Cape Town, gives us a sample workout to shed the fat, build muscle and manipulate the hormonal environment in order to prevent the storage of fat in “problem areas”. Kelly uses this strategy with her clients at her private gym and her incredible physique is testament to her strategy.

“This workout is designed to target the lower body (legs & bum) and upper body (abs, arms, shoulders). Spot reduction through exercise is a myth! You have to reduce overall body fat, which is what this workout is designed to do and at the same time, allow you to build muscle in those same areas which will give you a more shapely, harder appearance,” says Kelly.


The workout:

This type of workout is designed to increase lactic acid levels in the blood, which in turn decreases blood pH levels, sending a message to the brain to accelerate the production of growth hormone. Higher growth hormone levels lead to an increase in overall fat loss.

Bulgarian split squat 10-12 4
Renegade rows 10-12 4 each side
Romanian deadlifts 10-12 4
Walking lunges 12-15 4 each side
Push-ups 10-12 4
Sumo squats kettlebell 12-15 4
Hanging leg raises 12-15 4
Sled pull
Sled push

bulgarian split squat

Bulgarian split squat

Reps: 10-12, 4 sets

renegade row

Renegade rows

Reps: 10-12, 4 sets each side
Tip: Try keep your torso tight throughout the movement. Do your best not to rotate your hips as you lift the weight.

Romanian deadlifts

Reps: 10-12, 4 sets
Caution: This is not an exercise that is recommended for people with lower back problems. Also, it needs to be treated with the utmost respect paying special attention not to round the back forward too much as you move the torso.

Walking lunges

Reps: 12-15 a side, 4 sets
Tip: Keep your upper body upright through out the entire movement


Reps: 10-12, 4 sets

sumo squat

Sumo squats kettlebell

Reps: 12-15, 4 sets.

hanging leg raises

Hanging leg raises

Reps: 12-15, 4 sets

Sled Pull and Sled Push

25 meters push, 25 meters pull of weighted sled or plate push


Modelled by Fitness Magazine July/August cover model Jenadine Havenga 

Author: Tanja Schmitz

Founder and Editor of Fitness Magazine. You’ll find her behind her computer or on her bike, dreaming up new ways to improve or create content for you.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *