Tired of your belly bulging past where it belongs? Wish there was a way to pull it back behind your belt? Then you've come to the right place. Whether you've been ignoring your abs for the last few years or just can't seem to get them to flatten out no matter what you do, here are a few ways you can actively help your belly to get in place and stop sticking out where it doesn't belong. These techniques won't turn your abs into an instant six-pack, but they will help take away the pooch and set you up for the rock-hard abs you've been wanting.
If you want an instant change in the shape of your stomach, you're in for a treat! All it takes to improve your belly shape is to improve your posture. Instead of slouching while standing in line or crashing in your favorite chair, get your body in a completely vertical position. Your back will thank you, and your mid-section will begin to look like abdominals rather than a little ball of dough. The basic rule of posture is to keep each pivot point directly over the next point: knees over ankles, hips over knees, shoulders over hips, and ears over shoulders (okay, your ears aren't exactly pivot points). In addition, keep your shoulders open instead of pulling inward toward one another, and try to balance equal amounts of your weight on both the balls and heels of your feet.
As you probably guessed, getting a flatter stomach is going to take more than good posture. It's also going to take a little bit of sacrifice - including what you put in your mouth. If you tend to eat whatever winds up in front of your face, your dietary choices are going to have to change. In your quest for slim, shapely abdominal muscles, you're going to have to forego the buffet line, fried foods, extra sauce, certain salad dressings, and your favorite after-meal dessert. But when you weigh the option (a few extra pounds on your belly), these sacrifices are usually worth any pain you may go through.
As you know, some of the best foods you can eat can also result in unwanted gas issues. Broccoli, beans, and some dairy items can all be guilty of causing your belly to fill up with air that wants to get out. While this problem is only temporary, it keeps you from enjoying the flat abs that you seek. To keep your flat abdominal muscles looking nice and flat, figure out what foods cause you to gas up, and do your best to avoid those foods. If you find yourself unable to avoid foods that induce gas, try taking some medicine that relieves gas pain and bloating. This way, you can still enjoy the perks of your favorite fruits and veggies, but you don't have to suffer through the embarrassment and frustration of a bulging tummy.