The 'Real' Truth About Six-Pack Abs
Hands down, IT's probably the most controversial OF ALL fitness topics.
That's why we're going to look at the simple, honest truth – without any nonsense!
All the time, especially pre- and post-summer, we see the hammer really go down on getting into shape.
It's during this perious particularly, that you see newer, fancier gimmicks, and ads – promising weight loss and 'rock hard' abs.
I personally try to do my part in signalling that the so-called ‘truths’ and ‘secrets’ to six-pack abs are complete nonsense. And I'm always hopeful that you and people like Al won’t allow yourselves to be taken for a fool.
But alas, too many unwitting folks still get duped!
So with that, I'm going to dedicate this page to underlining the important points and tips on crafting abs:
1. Spot-reduction is not possible
There’s no way of selecting a particular area on your body, like your upper arms, thighs or abs – and reducing the fat in only those areas.
It’s an anatomical impossibility, unless you’re talking about liposuction, which at best will only give you soft and unnatural results. In addition, there are high costs and several potential dangers associated with this surgical procedure.
Our bodies are genetically programmed to deposit or lose fat in a particular way – and this cannot be changed. It's exactly why the many ab gadgets, fatburners, electromagnets, and so on – are a waste of time and money.
Of course, the promotional images and magazine covers carrying these bogus products show amazingly defined muscles. But the results obtained from using these methods are in reality, highly questionable.
Even if they're endorsed by celebrities.
2. Training the large muscle-groups strengthens the abs
Ironically, it’s the classic compound lifts and movements like the squat, deadlift, bench press, military press and chin up, which produce real results in strength-training.
Yes, ladies benefit perfectly well from these movements too – even though you won't always use the same equipment or poundages as us Guys do.
Performing compound exercises provides far better all-round and core-conditioning than any crunch, twist or leg raise.
Unfortunately though, these aren’t the methods which get endorsed – because nobody’s going to pay for being told to simply do a handful of old basic exercises.
But I promise you – it's true.
Conversely, direct ab-muscle training remains an ineffective means to sculpting abs.
3. Reducing overall body fat levels shows the abs
You've probably heard this fact before, maybe in different terms or words from different sources. The essence, however, is the same:
You can have the strongest, most powerful set of abs in the world – but you won't see an iota of detail, if your torso's flabby.
So, how do we get abs without attempting spot reduction, 1000’s of useless sit-ups or chugging down fatburner capsules?
Patiently and consistently. Time required?
My friend Steve does a great job addressing that right here: How Long Does It Take To Get Abs?
Simply put, a flat tummy and defined abdominal muscles come from a sustained fitness program and – just as important – a sensible eating plan.
To sum up, here are the 3 most important things you need to do
... If you want to go after that six-pack:
1. Engage in compound strength training using resistance (male or female). Doing this (either with mechanical means, free weights or your own body weight), will build/tone all of the major muscle groups, including your core area (abs, sides and lower back).
2. Follow an appropriate eating plan to gradually lower your overall body fat level. (You will need to lower it significantly though, if you want to actually see your individual ab muscles.)
3. Perform regular cardiovascular exercise at least 2-3 times per week (for between 15 and 30 minutes, or more, per session), ideally varying the intensity-level of your workouts.
Depending on your condition, you can 'toggle' your calorie-intake / cardio training to get you to your fitness goal.
Some people like doing zero to very little cardio, and manage to work towards desired body fat levels by being disciplined with their eating. Others prefer to be able to eat a little more, and balance that off with more cardio – in line with their goal (whether weight loss or maintenance).
Which is the best solution here? The one you enjoy more, and which gives the results you want.
And that's pretty much it.
I could give you tons more detail and references on the topic, but that only defeats the purpose of trying to get a clear message across. After all, it's really quite simple to understand what lies between you and your visible abs.
So, if you're entertaining the thought of getting your midsection lean and defined, you've got all the basic info you need. If you're looking for an effective program which follows the information and advice on this page, why not give the Sensible Fitness Program a try?
Best of luck with your fitness objectives!