The only thing I haven’t seen advertised for getting those “killer 6 pack abs” is a magical pill, but that doesn’t mean somebody’s not trying to sell them. Why buy a e-book when you can learn everything right here?
Building six pack abs and losing belly fat are the focus of many weight loss programs and equipment. But, if the product does not work (surprise, surprise) most people won’t ask for a refund.
Why? People blame themselves for failing. The truth about how to get six-pack abs is simple, but it takes a level of dedication, focus, and energy that most people aren’t really ready to commit to. It may be a longer process than you anticipate.
There are 2 Steps and No Shortcuts:
1. Lose Fat
2. Gain Muscle
The bottom line is that in order to have 6 pack abs you need two things. The first thing you need is low enough body fat so your abs can show and the second thing you need is well enough developed abs to show.
Start By Changing Your Diet
Eat well and often, that doesn’t mean a non-stop bacchanalian buffet. It means about 6 small healthy meals a day. It means a balanced diet of protein and complex carbs plus a small amount of “healthy” fat – about 15% of your diet.
When you do this you boost your metabolism. Your body relaxes and doesn’t feel the need to hold on to every calorie in case it might need it later. By eating these small amounts of healthy food your body is continuously supplied with the energy it needs throughout the day. As a bonus, your stomach starts shrinking to the size it should be – about the size of your balled up fist.
Think “nature food”. If it looks like something you could find growing outside, you can eat it. If not, pass it up. For example, a whole apple = good. Applesauce = not so good. Apple/cinnamon Danish = run away. The more you eat of food that looks like you would find in nature, the more nutrition you will be getting and the more energetic you will feel as well as being able to eat less calories.
Eat the highest amount of carbs earlier in the day; that way your body will be processing and burning it as energy throughout the day, not storing it as fat. Cut out the carbs at night and you’ll probably sleep better too.
When you eat fat make sure it comes from oily fish like tuna and salmon, and healthy oils that are found naturally in vegetables, fruits, or nuts.
Cut down on the red meat. Eat lean cuts such as chicken breasts and turkey and use virgin olive oil to cook it in. That doesn’t sound too hard, does it? BUT…
You Won’t Get 6-Pack Abs By Diet Alone
Diet is only 50% of the equation, and I’m sorry, if you really want to work out and get in shape you’re going to have to get off the couch and EXERCISE. If you’re fat, you have been taking in more calories than your body needs, and exercise is the only way you can turn that excess fat into toned, lean muscle.
By combining a good exercise regime with a healthy diet you can start losing the fat covering your abs (and the rest of your muscles) and look great. You don’t have to spend 4 hours every day at the gym. Leave that to the fanatics. A thirty minute work-out 5-6 days a week should do the trick.
There are no exercise routines that can target just one problem area of the body. If you have fat covering your abs, then you’ve got fat everywhere, so you need a total body workout, which will help tone all your muscles so you’ll lose the fat and increase your metabolism.
Different Kinds Of Exercises
There are many different ways of exercising. The two we will be talking about are cardiovascular and resistance training.
Cardiovascular exercise, cardio for short, uses large muscle groups to get your heart pumping and raise your heart rate to a sustained higher level. Some examples of cardiovascular training are brisk walking, swimming, climbing stairs. It is a good way to ”use up” some of your stored fat directly. A moderate intensity level of cardiovascular puts your body in a mode where it can use energy stored as fat. So it is good for slimming down.
Resistance training uses your muscles more specifically and intensely. It will raise your heart rate, but not as consistently as a cardio work out. There will be lots of peaks and valleys in your heart rate. The purpose of resistance training is to use muscles to the point of fatigue so your body will make more muscle. Some of the reasons why we want more muscle is because it looks good and it burns calories. (even when those muscles aren’t being put to work) Another benefit to any kind of resistance training is that your abdominal muscles will get a work out too, no matter what muscle you are focusing on, because the abdominals are used to stabilize your center so the rest of you can move.
You should alternate days of cardio and resistance training. The cardio will help oxygenate your blood and help reduce the soreness you should be getting with your resistance training. The soreness means that you have broken down muscle which, in turn, means that it will get built up stronger. So it is good to be sore. Just be sure to let your muscles rest so they can get built back up.
If you’re physically okay to start exercising and you don’t want, or can’t afford, to pay for a few sessions with a certified trainer then go online and make sure you understand thoroughly what it is you’re going to be doing.
When you start exercising regularly your metabolism will increase and you will burn more calories even when you’re not working out- especially if you are doing the resistance training. This is the cycle you’ll want to get into. As you get used to exercising and eating right, you’ll have more energy in general. You will become a leaner you and take the first step toward having those six-pack abs.
Building Your Six-pack
Use these exercises to strengthen and bulk up your abdominals. You can’t show off muscles that aren’t big enough to see.
Lie on the floor using a mat. Put your arms out in front of your chest or you can touch your temples with your hands, however you can balance your movements best. Don’t do crunches with your fingers locked behind your head and pulling on your neck.
Bend your knees and raise your upper torso towards your knees but not with your back muscles, use your abdominal muscles – this is the most important part. Lift upwards until your shoulder blades leave the ground. There’s no need to raise your entire back off the floor, you could end up straining it.
Exhale as you lift from the floor. When you’ve got as far as you can, hold for a second then exhale any air that’s left in your lungs and lower back down slowly, inhaling as you go. Don’t let your head touch the floor, just your shoulders. Repeat.
Lie on your back, knees bent, feet flat on the ground, wedged under something heavy like a couch. With your hands crossed over your chest sit all the way up with your back straight then return to the first position. If this becomes too easy –i.e. It doesn’t give you any soreness the next day- try it while holding a weight against your chest.
Lie on the floor with your legs straight out and hands at your sides. Lift your legs straight up without bending them, then lower your legs and repeat without letting your legs touch the floor. This helps to strengthen the muscles in the lower abdomen. Take it easy at first with these or you could strain your back.
Jack Knife Sit Ups
Laying down flat on the floor place your hands on the ground to your sides for balance; you can pick them up as you get used to the movement. Raise your knees and torso at the same time so your knees and face meet in line with your pelvis. Touch your knees with your nose. Your legs will fold and bring your feet towards your hips naturally, like a jack knife. Lie down again slowly putting your hands and feet back on the mat and repeat.
Put your body into the push-up position but with your elbows on the floor, with the rest of your raised off the ground. This is the static hold position, or plank. It trains all your core muscles to hold the body in place correctly. Hold for 45 seconds if you are a beginner.
To perform the side static hold, roll onto one side of your body and lift into the same position as before, but this time only one arm will be on the ground with the other arm pointed straight up the air with your non-weight bearing leg resting on your other leg. Hold for as long as you can.
Holding a weight close to your chest twist your torso from side to side. (Like your were trying to look over your shoulder without moving your neck) This exercise is for the obliques, which while not directly involved in creating a six-pack, is important to include so that your body doesn’t get imbalanced and prone to injury.
I don’t know how many people I’ve talked to who have done themselves an injury in the past by not working out correctly. Picking up some barbells and hurling them around is dangerous if you don’t know what you’re doing! You could hurt your back or tear ligaments and tendons – or worse.
If you have any doubt about your body’s capabilities, or you have a medical problem, consult your doctor before starting an exercise program. Many exercises can be adapted to accommodate physical problems and a certified trainer or therapist will be happy to advise you.
Most exercises give better results if you know how to breathe properly while you’re doing them. A general rule is to exhale on the muscle contraction and inhale as you relax the muscle.
In A Nutshell
1. Eat right- about six small meals a day with lots of “nature food”
2. Exercise- mix of cardio and resistance training to maximize fat loss
3. Build Abs- do specific abdominal exercises to bulk up your abs
You can send me three installments of $29.95 for this information if you like, but the bottom line is that if you want that six-pack you are going to have to work for it. On the bright side, the things we value most in life are the things we have worked hard for. It is possible for you to have the abs you want; you can do it- if you are willing to put the work in.
What have you tried to tone your tummy?? Have you tried the items on this list? What were your results? Share your thoughts with us!