Yes, the elusive 6-pack, a section of musculature so appealing that the fitness gods themselves bow down to the aesthetics of one. The funny thing is that, with all the hype, people have forgotten what it takes to get one. There are millions of gurus saying “do this exercise,” and “take this pill,” or “use this silly exercise contraption” to get those 6 pack abs.
Guess what? You don’t need to buy a 6 pack. You can burn the fat on your stomach away and show that whittled core in no time at all if you use the following tips:
What You Need To Know
There are a lot of methods for getting a rock-solid core that grace the internet. What a lot of people overlook is the aspect of nutrition. The abs are a place where fat likes to stick because that’s where all your organs are. Fat loss pills aren’t going to help you. Fat burning supplements aren’t going to help you. You need to tighten up your diet before you can tighten up the rest of your body.
Once you’re willing to fine-tune your diet, you will find that the 6 pack you’ve been working towards will be easier the achieve.
How To Get 6 Pack Abs in 6 Steps
1. Eat Enough Protein
Since the core muscles are made up of four sections—the transverse abdominis, the rectus abdominis, external and internal obliques—working them and building them up means that you need protein. Not only does protein have a high thermogenic effect on the body, it is necessary for DNA, tissues, and muscle recovery. If you want to burn fat and build the core, you need protein.
2. Eat Post-Workout Carbs
Disregard what all the health nuts are telling you, you need carbohydrates to survive. You also need carbohydrates to replenish your muscles after an intense workout. Naturally, eating too much is going to elevate your blood glucose levels and might prompt fat storage. That’s why you need to select quality, complex carbohydrates and opt for 1-2 cups of vegetables for each meal. Skipping carbohydrates means cutting out vital minerals and vitamins that are needed for keeping down bloat and stabilizing insulin.
3. Eat Healthy Fats
Eating fat doesn’t make you fat, contrary to what some people say. Healthy fats are not only necessary, but they are also key to burn fat. Polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats, like raw nuts, seeds, nut butters, fish oils, olive oil, and avocado are essential for your 6 pack abdominal diet. Dietary fat and fiber will also help keep insulin in check, fight bloat, and burn the belly fat that forms beer guts. In order to use healthy fats correctly, you should pair fat with complex carbs and protein.
For example, you can make a peanut butter sandwich on whole wheat bread with some carrots and celery on the side. You get the full spectrum of amino acids, fiber, carbohydrates, protein, and a little shot of fat to keep you feeling awesome for whatever comes your way.
4. Focus On Your Diet
If it isn’t obvious yet, diet is integral to getting a defined midsection. You need to balance your diet. Pay attention to the macronutrients you’re eating. Focus mainly on protein, because that is the foundation of muscle. Furthermore, the body burns extra calories while digesting protein.
Eat most of your carbohydrates after a workout, because this ensures that your insulin levels stay level and that you are feeding your muscles right.
Above any of this, you need fat. Eat fat to burn fat.
Once you have adequate amounts of protein, carbohydrates, and fat, you then turn your attention to filling in any nutritional potholes. That means looking at your diet and thinking about how many servings of fruits and vegetables you’re getting. What simple carbohydrates can you cut out? Do you eat a surplus of fast food? Are you getting enough calories or eating too much? Lastly, are you getting the right amount of antioxidants, minerals, and vitamins?
If you find any reason to doubt your diet, it’s time to revise it.
5. Stop Doing Thousands Of Crunches
Ever see those people in the gym who do 45 minutes of abdominal targeting exercises every day yet never seem to lose the flab? That is because crunches do not burn fat. Secondly, if you aren’t using your abdominal muscles effectively, you’re just working your hip flexors.
Ask any personal trainer or athlete how many times a week they work their core and what they do. I guarantee you that they will say they only do concentrated core work 2-3 times away and never bother with crunches. I sure don’t.
Instead, the people who have rock hard 6 packs focus on multi-joint, compound exercises that promote fat burning and total body strengthening. The reason is because compound exercises require good posture and alignment. In other words, you need to focus on your core, too.
Here are some exercises that are better than crunches and sit-ups:
- Dumbbell Lunges
- Military press
- Bench press
6. Use Smarter Cardio Methods
Now, the final component to earning your 6 pack abs is cardio. Not steady state cardio, either. HIIT training is one of the best methods for burning away stubborn fat, particularly in the middle. The best part is that you don’t have to do a lot of cardio to burn fat.
While doing active recovery, you can pick up a jump rope or hop on a treadmill, row machine, or stationary bike for 20-30 second intervals of cardio. Once your recovery period is done, you can go back to lifting, pulling, and pushing around weight.
You can also pair HIIT with core exercises. For example, you can do sprints then switch to Russian Twists or Bicycles during your break. Repeat that for several sets. Boom, there’s your fat-burning cardio session.
As the saying goes, “Abs are made in the kitchen, not in the gym.” Chances are, your abs are already there because if you’re working out with proper technique, you’re already working your core. Now, it’s time to burn off the fat that’s concealing that 6 pack. Use the tips mentioned and you’ll have no problem getting that 6 pack core this year.
Want access to more fitness tips like this one? Follow us on Facebook for more fitness and nutrition advice.