Getting 6 pack abs are the ultimate goal of many gym goers. Despite the fact that most people want them, not many people actually end up getting them. The path to getting a 6 pack depends on doing a few key things consistently over time (hint: its not 1000’s of crunches). This article will outline what you need to do and what you should avoid if your goal is to improve your abdominal region.
WHAT TO EAT:
Getting your body fat low enough is the key to having six pack abs. You could have the best abdominals in the world but if your body fat is too high you will never see them. While food will not directly get you a six pack, there are certain types of foods that will make it easier to achieve just that. Food that help you lose body fat meet the following criteria:
- They are filling.
- They provide your body with the materials it needs to run optimally.
- They are largely unprocessed.
Basing your diet around these things is not a black or white system but rather exists on a continuum. For example, eating an apple will be more filling, provide more vitamins and minerals and is less processed than drinking apple juice. This means if you want to lose body fat, you should eat whole apples more than you have apple juice. The same would go for having oats versus a standard breakfast cereal or a good quality steak versus a burger from a fast food outlet. Neither one is necessarily better than the other, but one option should be taken more than the other if your goal is to lose body fat.
HOW TO TRAIN:
When it comes to training for 6 pack abs you will see better progress when you focus on exercise that builds the body as a whole as opposed to spending your time focusing directly on ab training. This should involve:
- Cardio: When you improve your aerobic system, your body gets better at burning fat and using the food you eat for fuel. In addition to this, you will have more energy and recover faster from workouts. Whichever means of cardio you most enjoy is fine, just try to get in at least 60-90 minutes per week of something that makes you sweat.
- Resistance Training: Gaining strength and lean muscle mass is the secret to getting and keeping the body you want. Do ‘compound movements’ such as squats, lunges, deadlifts, rows, push-ups etc. If you want to mix in some direct ab work in your training that is great but don’t let it take up the bulk of your session.
When it comes to achieving any goal, it serves to think of what the people who have already achieved it are doing. In almost all cases, those with 6 pack abs do some form of strength training, train hard, eat enough protein, eat fruits and vegetables, don’t drink too much alcohol, have a good sleep routine and manage their stress levels. Do these things and over time someone else will copy your behaviour in their quest to improve their body.