To get a flat, toned stomach, it’s not enough to do countless situps every day.Effective abdominal muscle training looks different and, to the surprise of some, does not only focus on the stomach. Because unfortunately it is not possible to lose weight only on certain parts of the body. If you want to build an impressive six-pack, you should therefore always train your whole body .
One thing is certain: in order for the abdominal muscles to be seen, they must first be trained. Strengthening the abdominal muscles is therefore an essential and indispensable part on the way to a six-pack.
But the body fat percentage is no less important. After all, what use are well-toned abdominal muscles when they are covered by a layer of fat? If you want to get rid of the belly, you have to drive in two lanes and strengthen your abdominal muscles on the one hand and reduce your body fat percentage on the other.
That sounds easier said than done. Visibly toned abdominal muscles are a great challenge and require a lot of discipline, patience and stamina . But if you set the right levers in terms of training and nutrition, you won’t have to wait too long for the first successes.
This three-part series of articles on the subject of abs training provides step-by-step instructions and shows how the dream of a washboard abs can come true. As? With clear and realistic goals, effective abdominal muscle training and the right diet:
- Abdominal muscle training step 1: Define goals
- Abdominal muscle training step 2: Reduce the percentage of body fat
- Abdominal muscle training step 3: Train efficiently
In the first part of the series of articles, we first deal with the fundamentals of solid abdominal muscle training: The goal . Because without a destination, the way does not matter.
However, those who fall victim to indifference and resignation can forget their dream of a flat, well-toned stomach right away. The way to a six-pack is hard and full of privation, but every effort is duly rewarded.
The more solid the basic building block on which the Sixpack project is built, the better the chances of success. Above all, this includes clear and realistic goals .
Step 1: Define realistic goals
Various magazines and online portals suggest with headlines such as ” Sixpack in 6 weeks ” that anyone can manage to get a washboard abs in this relatively short time.
However, this is only partly true. Someone who is already well trained and has a flat stomach can with the appropriate training make it to six packs in six weeks. However, everyone else must first reach a certain level of training and reduce their body fat percentage so that the abdominal muscles become visible at all.
Such bait offers make false promises for most people and are neither realistic nor serious. A realistic goal setting always takes the starting level into account. Anyone who is overweight should first try to get down to normal weight and achieve a moderate to good body fat percentage. In this case, targeted abdominal muscle training should only take place in the further course of training.
Anyone who already has a flat stomach and is generally in good shape can get started right away and tickle the deeper abdominal muscles through effective training.
Defeat the inner pig dog
There is more to having a six-pack than dieting and buying a fitness magazine. In addition to the right (permanent) diet, it is above all regular and intensive abdominal muscle training that leads to long-term success.
“Regular” and “intensive” accordingly also mean that effective abdominal muscle training takes time, is extremely strenuous and requires a lot of discipline. Those who let themselves be dazzled by promising but unrealistic offers risk quickly finding excuses and letting the training slip.
As with all fundamental changes in life, your inner weaker self is your worst enemy on the way to a six-pack. Many of us may still be able to pull ourselves up in the first few days and overcome them for training or a healthy diet, but then quickly drop our good resolutions.
The reason is mostly in excessive expectations of yourself and too radical or strict nutrition and training plans. It is all the more important to stay realistic . I am not a fan of rigid nutrition or training plans, because nutrition and training are as individual as the person himself. Therefore, the goals must also be individual be and fit to the person and their life.
If you only think short-term and orientate yourself towards others, you will hardly have a chance of long-term well-trained abdominal muscles. Abdominal muscle training and appropriate nutrition must become permanent companions on the way to a six-pack.
If you are not ready for this, you should better leave (short-term) diets or training methods the same. Otherwise the yo-yo effect threatens – and nobody really needs that in the bikini season.
To successfully defeat your weaker self, time management is essential. The first thing to do is to precisely define the goal and period. Because spontaneity often leads to comfort, while (in writing) defined goals create commitment. Goals can be defined differently and relate to the targeted weight, diet or training.
Possible goals for more defined abdominal muscles could initially be: “Lose 5 kilos in four weeks”, “Reduce waist size by 3 centimeters in 1 month” or “Lower body fat percentage by 5 percent in 6 weeks”. Regarding diet and training, goals such as “stop snacking on sweets in the evening”, “do not drink alcohol during the week” or “train 4 times a week” could be targeted.
Without clearly defined goals and time frames, the fight against your weaker self will be extremely difficult. It is important to set goals in such a way that they can be reconciled with the individual’s everyday life and excuses do not stand a chance have. You have to be aware that the “Sixpack” project is not temporary, but that effective abdominal muscle training and a change in diet should be maintained permanently for long-term results.
It is therefore of little use to take a week’s vacation and turn on the turbo if you throw everything overboard in the following week. True to the motto “constant dripping wears away the stone”, it is not necessarily the duration, but rather the regularity and intensity that is decisive.
When setting out personal goals, you should therefore always ask yourself: “Can I keep this permanently?”
Does it have to be a six-pack?
There would be no lure offers like the “turbo six-pack” if they didn’t sell. Similar to lightning diets, such auspicious messages awaken that it is not too late and you can theoretically achieve the bikini figure (if you want) within a few days or the six-pack within a few weeks.
The logical common sense would have to be skeptical with this uniformity. After all, important factors such as starting level, age, genetic components and personal everyday life are not taken into account.
While some can develop a six-pack in a relatively short time without making major changes to their diet, the path to a washboard abs is extremely arduous for many. Without a consistent change in diet and intensive training, a six-pack is almost unattainable or hard to maintain for most people.
Before starting a strict diet or one-sided abdominal training, it helps to be honest with yourself. So does it really have to be a six-pack? For many, a flat stomach would be a great success. This can even be achieved with far less effort and is durable over the long term.
Of course, there is basically nothing wrong with a six-pack, but such a goal must be realistic. Otherwise you run the risk of failing your excessive expectations.
Get individual advice
If you want to lose weight or achieve a specific training goal, such as a six-pack, you should always get professional advice in the gym or from a personal trainer.
In contrast to online media and magazines, fitness trainers or other experts have the advantage that they can better assess the individual situation in a personal conversation and better assess the possibilities and goals.
Depending on the training goal, individual training plans can then be created and nutrition tips given. That is definitely more productive than blindly trusting any plans from the Internet that might work for others, but can backfire on you. With the wrong training plan under your arm, performance can even suffer and motivation can decrease.
Even if a six-pack cannot be achieved for everyone in six weeks, it is worthwhile to strengthen your abdominal muscles in many ways.
Why build abdominal muscles?
The abdominal muscles play an important, or rather a supporting role for the body.
Weak abdominal muscles can lead to postural damage, provoke a hollow back and cause the upper body to buckle. A well-defined six-pack is therefore a worthwhile training goal not only for aesthetic reasons, but also for athletic and health reasons.
In addition to a flat, firm stomach, the lower back muscles are also strengthened during abdominal muscle training. Both muscle groups are naturally holding muscles that enable an upright posture, keep the organs in shape and constantly stabilize the unstable equilibrium of the spine.
A well-trained core creates a stable corset that gives us the necessary support and also prevents back pain . Anyone who has strong abdominal and back muscles will also improve their performance enormously in other sports such as cycling, running or strength training. A stable torso as a connection between the upper and lower body facilitates faster movements by using power and strength from both body areas at the same time.
Aside from the aesthetic and athletic benefits of having strong abdominal muscles, reducing belly fat is also worthwhile. A belly that is too big not only looks ugly, the barely visible fat pads between the organs can also endanger health.
So it pays off to get rid of your paunch and tackle six-pack training for several reasons!
Step 2: Reduce body fat percentage with the right diet
If nothing stands in the way of achieving your six-pack goal, you cannot avoid two central building blocks:
Abdominal muscle training and proper nutrition .
On the one hand, nutrition serves the breakdown of body fat, on the other hand, building muscle mass. Instead of a short-term and strict diet, a permanent change in diet is in the foreground. After all, the trained abdominal muscles should be preserved in the long term.
In the second part of the series of articles on the topic of abdominal muscle training, we therefore dedicate ourselves to dietary changes . Diet accounts for about 40 percent of training success and is therefore by no means negligible.
Even those who initially “only” want to achieve a flat stomach will find helpful nutrition tips on how to lose weight and how to reduce fat.