Even athletes who train for years may have stubborn deposits of fat that are difficult to lose. For these athletes, a procedure such as liposuction can, according to one plastic surgeon, be “the frosting on the cake” that really helps them showcase their hard work.

“These are people who are already putting in the hard work,” says Emily Pollard, MD, a board-certified plastic surgeon from Bala Cynwyd, Pa. “Contouring can help these patients show off their efforts with more definition.”

While already being close to your ideal weight isn’t necessarily a requirement for liposuction, those who are already practicing good health habits such as eating right and getting regular exercise can expect a greater degree of definition to be the result of a well-executed liposuction procedure.

A Solution for Stubborn Fat Deposits

Dr. Pollard explains that some fat deposits — such as a double-chin or a belly pooch — may be hereditary. This means that a healthy diet and exercise — even the strict habits followed by a dedicated athlete — may not be enough to get rid of them.

For these types of fat deposits, a cosmetic procedure such as liposuction may be the only viable option for athletes who want to avoid the frustration of a persistent feature they see as a flaw.

“Athletes actually get more frustrated that their bodies are not displaying all the hard work they put in. All athletic men want a rippling six pack and all athletic women want a flat tummy, but even working out every day won’t necessarily get them there,” says Alfredo Hoyos, MD, a plastic surgeon from Colombia who has invented several cosmetic procedures.

“Fat is a very strange thing. For example, few men can actually achieve the six pack we see on models and actors because they need the appropriate genetics to store fat in the right places, where they don’t obscure the definition of the muscle. The same can be said for women,” he adds.

Surgical Options for Athletes

Dr. Hoyos recommends high-definition liposuction to many of his athletic patients. It’s a procedure that Hoyos invented and is designed to offer patients optimal results through precise body sculpting.

According to Hoyos’ website, the procedure is an “exacting technique” designed to “mold” and “enhance” certain features. VASER (Vibration Amplification of Sound Energy at Resonance) technology is used to perform the procedure. The surgeon uses this technology and ultrasonic waves to break through fatty tissues and emulsify the fat before it is suctioned away.

“The definition will ‘clean’ the fat between the muscles and produce the results patients want,” Hoyos says.

A Post-Procedure Boost

Ultimately, many athletes who opt to have stubborn areas of fat removed may find the procedure helps boost their self-esteem and helps to keep them motivated on their journey toward fitness, according to Hoyos.

Pollard agrees. “They put a lot of hard work into their bodies,” he says. “Athletes should be able to have pride in the work they do.”