Who says getting a six pack has to be complicated? We all know you need to do two things in order to get that elusive six-pack: lose body fat and build lean muscle. To do this you must follow a proper nutrition and exercise plan. The concept may sound simple, but putting it into action can be quite challenging. It will take dedication, time and patience to get a six-pack; but in the end, the effort is well worth it.

Before you start the abs workout below. Here are a few tips that will help bring out that elusive six-pack.

5 Tips to Help Bring Out Your Abs

1 – Train Your Abs Heavy:

By upping the stress and resistance placed on your abs, you will build the size of the abdominal wall muscles, which in turn will press up against the skin adding to that six-pack look.

2 – Eat Small, Frequent Meals:

This will speed up your metabolism and will allow your body to burn excess body fat. A faster metabolism equals more calories burned and less fat covering your abs. 

3 – Drink Plenty Of Water:

It’s critical to keep your water intake high. Think about it, your body is made up of 75% water and every cell in your body needs water to function properly. Drinking water frequently will also help curb your appetite.

4 – Don’t Skip Breakfast:

By simply eating a balanced breakfast within 30 minutes of waking up, you can actually increase your metabolism by roughly 20-30%!

5 – Get Proper Rest:

Not sleeping enough causes the body to release a stress hormone called cortisol. Cortisol promotes fat storage and will ultimately kill any efforts to get ripped abs. Sleeping well will also allow the body function at an optimum level which will result in a faster metabolism and greater muscle gains. Try to get at least 8-9 hours of sleep a night. 

Take Your Abdominal Training To the Next Level

If you’ve been training your abs for some time and aren’t making any progress, the problem might be that you’re not changing your workouts frequently enough. If you do the same routine over and over, you’re wasting your time because your body gets used to the program and stops responding. There are people who do the same routine for five years straight; at that point, it’s not about change, it’s to maintain what they’ve already got.

Once you become an intermediate trainer you should switch your ab routine every third workout. A beginner has to learn the basics and get his or her body acclimated to the program, but once you reach intermediate level, it’s time to experiment and shock your body into new development. Add one of the techniques listed below into every third workout–they’ll definitely give your abs the boost they need and stop your body from hitting a plateau. If you’re an advanced trainer, you’re probably already using these techniques in your daily workout because you know the secret… they work.

Super-Sets

The first technique is called a super-set, which is when you perform two different exercises consecutively without resting. Choose two different ab exercises, but don’t pick two that work the same area. For example, choose one for the lower part of your abs and one for your upper or oblique area. You’ll find that these super-sets really intensify your ab workout.

 

Exercise Reps Rest between sets
Lying leg raises (lower) 15 to 20 None
Basic crunches (upper) 15 to 20 20 seconds, then start over

 

Do this super-set as part of your workout, or do three sets of the above two exercises as a whole workout.

Tri-SetsRobert-irvine-hang-abs

We all know that the prefix tri means “three,” but I like to say it means to “try hard” because these exercises will certainly take your workout up a notch! Tri-sets are more difficult than super-sets because you’re performing three consecutive exercises with no rest between them. They’re also great for people with limited time on their hands because they provide a very short and intense workout.

When I choose abdominal exercises for my tri-set, I pick one exercise that stresses each area– the lower, upper and oblique muscles. This way, I know that I’m working the entire abdominal area and get a complete workout.

Exercise Reps Rest between sets
Alternate knee tucks (lower) 15 to 20 None
Single side leg raises (oblique) 15 to 20 None
Crunch with knees in the air (upper & lower) 15 to 20 20 to 30 seconds, then start over

This routine can constitute your entire workout (you can do between two to four sets depending on your current fitness level).

Giant Sets

giphyThis technique, which constitutes four exercises in a row, is definitely not for the weak. In fact, if you thought tri-sets were hard, they’re going to seem like a treat compared to giant sets.

Pick four ab exercises of your choice, but make sure to include one each for the lower, upper and oblique areas. Then, pick one extra exercise based on your individual needs. If your lower abs needs more work, pick an exercise in that area. If your obliques need the extra work, then pick one that targets them. It’s totally up to you.

When you do giant sets, you must give 100 percent of your effort, but listen carefully to your body to avoid injury.

Exercise Reps Rest between sets
Hanging reverse crunch (lower) 15 to 20 None
Hanging twisting leg raises (oblique) 15 to 20 None
Exercise ball crunch (upper) 15 to 20 None
Barbell Rollout (lower) 15 to 20 30 seconds, then start over

 

You can choose to put the exercises in any order, but I prefer to do lower abs, obliques, then upper abs. You can mix it up until you find what works best for you. This is a very difficult workout, and you won’t have to add any additional ab work if you do it.

Beyond Ab Workouts

Unfortunately, unless your body-fat percentage is low, then the only six-pack you’re going to see is at the grocery store. You simply can’t just eat whatever you want and still hope to have a flat mid-section. I’m sorry but you’re going to have to put down those fast food burgers, throw away those bakery delights and get on a solid nutritional plan.

Additionally, if you are serious about creating a perfect six-pack of abs you should include cardiovascular exercise into your workout program. Cardio will help you melt away that body fat and put you on the fast track to your goal. Combining a healthy diet, cardio and weight training is the best and fastest way to achieve results. “It will take dedication, time and patience to get a six pack; but in the end, the effort is well worth it.”

 

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