Taste The Six Pack
“Do you have abs”? This is a question that a friend of mine who is also trainer was asked by one of his clients. The quick answer, for anyone who is asked this is, YES! We all have “abs” which is the short name for the rectus abdominis, a large muscle in front of the abdomen that if weren’t there we couldn’t walk, lift things, stand upright, and our intestines and other organs would be falling out! So, yes, we all have abs. The specific question this client meant to ask is, “do you have visible abs, or the ever sought after six pack?” That is a very different story. So if we all have abs but most of us can’t see them the question is how do we get a six pack? Well the easy answer is exercise and a proper diet with a strong emphasis on proper diet. We all can’t see our abs but we can all taste them. Taste abs? What the heck do I mean right?! Well as you are reading this right now (as long as you aren’t eating anything) you are tasting what a six pack taste like. Six pack abs taste like seeing that bag of peanut M&Ms and walking past them. Six pack abs taste like not eating a piece of cake, not eating that bag of chips, not overeating, not overloading on carbs. This is a little trick that I taught myself to keep myself from eating junk food. I see something that would be delicious and I am tempted until I remember that NOT eating it is the way to the six pack.
The other important part of attaining visible abs is exercise. As a trainer the number one question I get is, “How do I get rid of belly fat”? Again, the short answer is exercise and proper diet. We covered “Tasting the Six Pack” so what specific exercises will help you get a sculpted midsection? There are thousands of exercises that will help you reach that goal so the quicker answer to that question is what exercises you should not waste your time on. The number one exercise that you should not waste your time on will surprise a lot of people; crunches! The key to having a visibly toned midsection is lowering body fat percentage. You do that by changing your BMR (Basal Metabolic Rate) which is the calories you burn on a regular day by just existing. The way you increase your BMR is to increase lean muscle. The more muscle we have the more fat we burn. Our largest muscle groups are legs, glutes (butt), lats (back), and pecs (chest). So the best way to increase muscle mass is to work those large muscle groups and not worry as much about the smaller muscles (like abs) but instead train the entire core (hip flexors, abs, obliques, and lower back) all at one time with exercises like planks. The more muscles worked at one time the more calories burned and the larger the muscle groups worked the more muscle is gained.
Overall the best way to work toward the all mighty six pack is to watch what you eat and to train your large muscle groups. For more specific exercise examples, ask a trainer. That’s why we’re here. Just don’t let me catch you doing crunches if you haven’t done squats, lunges, push-ups, and rows first!
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