You know you want to get a flat stomach, or better yet, you want to get ripped six pack abs. Maybe you think you have to get some fancy abdominal exercise machines or you need to make line at the popular abdominal exercises machines at your gym. Well it is time you change your way of thinking and instead focus on the techniques that work without using fancy machines.
As long as I can remember there have been various products pitched on TV that promise ripped abs by simply using strange machines. Remember the ab roller? The Ab Swing? Torso Track? Plus a variety of many other gadgets? I think there was one that sent electrical shocks in to your abs too?
Well in order to achieve sexy abs it is much easier than you think. There are various abs workouts out on the market that work and are free. For an example of an abs workout check out the Abs Report by Rusty Moore. In it Rusty shows you the right workouts to get deep etched six pack abs or flat stomach, depending on your goals.
Before building an abs workout there are two factors that have to be present in order for those abs to show. Regardless of how well you apply these exercises you have to eliminate fat. In order to eliminate fat you have to:
- Eat Right
- Exercise properly using a combination of strength training and cardio
This is not to burst your bubble but if you believe that doing crunches will get you close to ripped abs you are mistaken. In order to get abs that show fat percentage has to be low and the abs have to be trained and become dense (hypertrophy). Your main focus is to drop your fat levels by coming down to a lower body fat percentage. This may sound like it is extremely difficult but it is not.
Eat Right But Don’t Fall For Fad Diets
I truly believe that most people have common sense and know that eating too much or eating enough of the bad stuff will get you in trouble. Here is a simple thing you can do today to eat a lot cleaner. Note- this type is for anyone who finds it hard to drastically change his or her diet, something I don’t encourage anyway.
Eliminate one item that you know is unhealthy for you. This can be a small item like soda, chocolate bars, fries, chips, you get the picture. Eliminate that one item today and as you feel comfortable eliminate other unhealthy food items from your diet as you become more disciplined.
This one tip alone helped a friend lose 30 pounds in a month. What did he eliminate? Well after asking him what his vice was he told me he was drinking a liter bottle of soda a day. Simply eliminating this from his diet and exercising actively helped him lose weight and the results were surprising.
Simply find that one thing you know is keeping you from making gains. One small change can lead to major gains. I am not saying you will achieve HUGE results but sometimes making a small step in the right direction is a good start.
Cardio & Strength Training Is Key
If you ever thought that you could get ripped abs by avoiding exercise you are wrong. There are some freaks of nature that are so slim that they can eat all they want, not do any exercise and 2 crunches later they have a six pack (my brother is one). Most people do not fit in this category so you have to make an effort.
When it comes to cardio the best approach is to do interval training. Forget about doing long cardio sessions. Simply follow a good interval-training workout in you cardio workouts and you will burn fat this way. With very brief but intense sessions lasting less than 30 minutes you can get closer to losing body fat than ever.
Strength training does not necessarily mean weight training. You can do bodyweight workouts or any other method that involves muscle building. I have often heard people say that they don’t want to lift weights and build muscle until they first lose fat. I have to tell you that you should do strength training as soon as possible.
Strength training will not bulk you up unless you eat a certain way and do specific number of repetitions in your workouts. You can look lean while doing weights. Doing strength training is extremely important as this burns off a huge amount of calories than simply doing cardio alone. Again, the important thing to remember is that the intensity level is important.
Forget Most Abdominal Exercise Machines & Forget About Crunches
Yes, you heard right, drop most abdominal exercise machines. If you want sexy beach ready abs you will have to drop the machines and really forget about crunches. This goes against the popular opinion that you need to do an endless number of crunches to get your abs to show. In reality, by doing crunches and using many of the abdominal machines at the gym you are setting yourself for having NO ABS and GETTING A LOWER BACK INJURY.
Rusty Moore explains in Fitness Black Book why this is the case and why you need to avoid traditional abs exercises. Instead of focusing on just the abs you need to work on the core region, which consists of the lower back, obliques and the abs themselves.
Build Density In The Abs
One of the primary problems with many conventional abs exercises is that they do not work the area with enough intensity. It is easy to do sit ups and crunches and these do not provide the adequate intensity and stimulation to develop density in the rectus abdominus (fancy term for six pack).
In order to stimulate the abs so that they may develop and become more dense you need to exercises that don’t just focus on the upper abs region, but the entire are of the abs as well. An excellent way to do this is by doing exercises like leg raises and leg raises variations like hanging leg raises, bent leg raises and knee ups (these 3 exercises are used with a pull up bar or dip machine which doubles as an abdominal exercise machine).
Strengthen The Core
The next step you need to do is strengthen the core region which included the oblique, the region from the groin to right below the chest and the lower back. Exercises such as planks and side planks are a great way to strengthen these areas.
Note: eliminate the exercise known as hyperextensions as these cause unnecessary wear and tear in the lower back and lead to injury in the long term.
Abdominal Exercise Machines Free Workout
Here is a sample workout that does not require machines.
- Lying leg raises (4-5 sets of 20)
- Planks (Hold for 1 to 2 minutes but try for 2 minutes)
- Side Planks (hold for 1 minute each side)
- Toe Touch Crunches: lie down and with your feet up crunch up and try to touch your toes with the tips of your fingers (aim for 4-5 sets of 15 reps)
Perform this workout 2 or 3 times per week on non-consecutive days.
As you can see it is not necessary to work on your abs by using abdominal exercises machines. Remember that doing these exercises ALONE will not get you sexy abs, six pack abs or a flat stomach but combined with a good diet and a good workout regimen it will highlight the results of your efforts.
Feel free to leave comments below and feel free to make any recommendations.