Your body starts storing fat around your hips, thighs & essential organs(belly area). Once these places start to get hefty, your body then moves outwards towards your arms and feet. If you are at the point where you are storing lots of fat in your arms then when you burn calories, your body will take it from your arms rather than your belly fat. (This has something to do with protecting & warming your vital organs) This is why if you start an intense running program, the first place you will start to lose fat is in your arms and lower legs. Eventually, if you continue an intense running program, that weight will start to come off of shoulders and thighs. Finally, once all of the remote fat stores are depleted, your body will start using the fat around your vitals(belly).
Your body stores fat using a F-I-L-O algorithm. (First In Last Out). An analogy: If you were to stack 10 papers, in order to get the first paper off of the stack, you would have to remove the top 9 papers. In other words, if you want to get at the belly fat, you have to attack your whole body mass % as a whole. It is impossible to “Target” belly fat. If someone told you they did a bunch of crunches and they got a flat stomach, its because of the calories they burnt, not because their stomach got amazingly strong. Having a six pack is about low body fat, not super big stomach muscles.
Source: I was a PT instructor in the military and this is the methodology a PHD physiologist explained to me that I should use in order to fight obesity in the military(higher than civilian rate).