Thursday, April 7, 2011

The Elusive Six-Pack

Are you in search of that elusive six pack? Have you been performing hundreds of crunches, only to look in the mirror and see….absolutely…..nothing?

Most people believe that if they perform hundreds of ab exercises every day that they will obtain a beautiful, flat stomach promoting a powerful six-pack. Unfortunately, most almost always fail. There is more to obtaining a muscular stomach than just doing crunches.

Genetics, age and gender help determine the shape of your abdomen; therefore, you may not have an actual “six pack”. That said, with the proper exercises, you can improve the abdominal muscles. The abdominal muscles react to resistance training just like any other muscle group. Effective exercise will fatigue muscles in less than 20 repetitions and will produce better results than doing 100 crunches everyday.

However, if you want to actually see those abs, you are going to have to shed that layer of fat over them. To do that you are going to need to do 3 things: watch your diet and eat clean whole foods, perform cardio, and exercise your abs 3-4 times a week (listed in order of importance).
90% of the equation is going to be your diet. To help speed up the process, you need to stay away from alcohol, sugar, and sodium. Your sodium intake should only be 1500 mg per day and your added sugar should be limited as much as possible. The more flab you have to shed, the longer it will take to see those ab muscles pop through, realistically 3-6 months. But don’t get discouraged, if you eat clean, and do cardio as many days a week as you can, incorporating High Intensity Intervals, you can see results in as few as 4 weeks.

Here is a list of good ab exercises to incorporate into your workout program.
Bicycle Crunch, Standard Crunch, Reverse Crunch, Oblique Crunch, Plank,
Side Plank, Leg Raises, Stability Ball Crunch.

You can also go to the web to find more challenging exercises, and exercises to perform in the gym using cables and other equipment.

Keep working hard and you will not be disappointed.

No comments: