With the festive season behind us and social summer events in full swing, some of us may be finding it hard to leave that Santa belly behind.

Dan Andrews, Fitness Manager at Virgin Active Health Clubs shares his top tips on how to lose the Santa Belly.


This is a great way to work the sides of your stomach, flatten the belly and strengthen your core muscles.

How to do it at home:

Start by lying on your back and bring your knees up so they are parallel to the floor at a 90 degree angle. Bring your arms behind your head and rest your head in your hands.

Using your core muscles, breathe out and curl your shoulders up off the floor into a C-shape. Keep the tummy tight to support the movement and protect your back.

Extend your left leg out as you twist your left elbow to meet your right knee.
Return to the centre and repeat to the opposite side, taking your right elbow to your left knee. To get the most from this exercise hold for ten seconds before switching sides.

Repeat 10 to 15 reps for three sets.

This can be tough but stick with it and you’ll see the Santa Belly start to disappear soon enough!


We’ve made a tweak to the traditional crunch so let’s see how you go, it’s designed to really work the muscles and flatten out that stomach.

How to do it at home:
Lying on your back, point your knees at a 90 degree angle and have your toes pointed on the floor, heels raised. Bring your arms up, resting your head in your hands with your elbows out to the side.

Breathing out, press your belly button towards the floor and lift your shoulders up to a C-curl. Unlike the traditional crunch, you’re not lifting yourself up to your knees, keep your stomach flat on the floor and use the core muscles to hold your shoulders and chest up in the C-shape.

Hold this position for ten seconds before slowly lowering yourself back to the starting position, keeping the abs tight.

Repeat 10 to 12 times for three reps. You will feel the burn with this exercise but trust me it’s worth it!

Ab classes

If you’re a regular gym-goer look out for classes that target the abs. Try attending these two to three times a week – it’s a great way to make sure you’re working the abs regularly and there’s always someone on hand to help you if you’re not sure on some of the moves.

Virgin Active Health Clubs hold regular V-Core classes which are perfect for those who are pressed for time. V-Core is a half hour class where you way crunch your way to sculpted abs – best of all you don’t have to be a pro to join the class, it’s open to all fitness levels!

How easy is that? If you can follow some or all of these tips you will be on your way to cutting that Santa Belly in half.