How to get Abs? – The Million Dollar Question

QUESTION:

“My tummy fat is not burning as much as I expected, even after doing rigorous ab crunches. Help out!”

MY 2 CENTS:

Alright, here you go, you might want to save this.

Everyone wants a flat stomach (some want visible abs too).

As a beginner, we normally see people sweating out for months on the ab machines trying to get their desired abs (or flat stomach).

All those crunches, all that hard work, all the “sweat”.

And yet, how many people actually get what they wanted?

Almost none?

Ever wondered why??

Let me break it down for you-

  1. The typical ab exercises do not exert any significant stimulus on your rectus abdominis to develop it. You should treat it like any other body part. Resistance training for your biceps and mere crunches for your abs? Well, that won’t work.

(your “abs” is collectively a single sheath of muscle known as rectus abdominis (the main “6-pack”). Apart from these there are other supporting abdominal muscles too like the obliques and the serratus. If you develop those muscles well, and drop your body fat significantly, it becomes visible, else it remains underdeveloped and hidden beneath the layer of fat.)

  1. The suggested rep range in a single set of ab-crunches (100-200) is actually a ton of misinformation being fed in the fitness industry. Doesn’t really help. If anything, it makes matters worse. Your back may really curse you for it.

Instead apply resistance on these muscles in the form of progressive weights and treat it just like any other muscle group and work it out with resistance training, regularly.

  1. Now considering you get your ab exercises right and workout well, still these exercises (or any exercises) are eventually working out the muscle fibres deep down inside your stored layer of fat. And the exercise itself DOESN’T melt the fat on that spot, unlike what has been propagated so far in “Get 6 pack in a week with this workout” videos.

So what do you do?

Firstly, get your nutrition in place. That will help you burn the fat and with the help of some good ab exercises, you can develop those ab muscles (rectus abdominis, internal and external obliques, serratus, intercostal muscles), that look good, once you burn away the fat with proper nutrition.

Secondly, do not do only ab exercises for your abs.

If you want to develop your core, do other important exercises, and the big lifts and engage your core.

Deadlifts. Squats, Bench press, military press, all these help to develop the core along with a secondary help in burning your fat away, provided your nutrition is on point.

AB EXERCISES:

Here are some exercises that you can do. Do each, twice a week.

Some moderately basic and effective ab exercises-

Day 1 – LOWER ABS-

Leg raises,

Weighted leg raises,

Hanging leg raises,

Planks,

V crunches

Day 2 – UPPER ABS AND SIDES-

Cable crunches (weighted),

Weighted bench crunches,

Ab rollouts (barbell)

Side bends (weighted),

Woodcutter chops (weighted),

Side Jackknives

Russian twists,

3-4 sets each × 8-15 reps

Remember, abs are made in the Gym, but revealed in the kitchen. Unless you lose the fat on top of your developed abs achieved with these intense ab exercises, it makes no sense.

So keep your nutrition on point and come down to about 10% bf (men) and about 16-17% bf (women) to be able to see your abs and flaunt them.

And even if you do not want abs but just a flat stomach, nutrition plays 85% role in helping you achieve that.

Also, these exercises can help you develop the necessary muscular structure and with proper nutrition and strength training, you are not too far from your dream body.

Article Credits – Dev Biswas

Dev Biswas

Dev Biswas

Editor-in-Chief - FITMAG and Senior Nutrition Consultant at SQUATS. Engineer, Writer, Musician, Singer - overall a connoisseur of creativity. Engages in philosophical rants about the world and existence when he's not writing, planning diets and workouts for clients or singing. Get in touch with him at www.devbiswas.com