How to get a six pack is one of the most popular fitness searches on the web with everyone trying to get that flat stomach look. Well everyone actually already has a six-pack, the issue is that your abdominal muscles are either too small or your stomach fat is covering them. If you actually want to reveal your six-pack then you need to build stomach muscle’s and also cut away at the fat that’s covering them.
Before you start you should be aware that obtaining that desired look is not something that is going to happen overnight. To build a great six-pack it will require many months of training and eating right.
The Six Pack Diet
The most essential part of getting a six-pack, what some people like to ignore is your diet. You are never going to get that killer six-pack look if you are not eating towards it. To get your abdominal muscles actually showing you need to get your body fat percentage down to 12 percent or lower. The lower that you can get your body fat, the more your skin is going to tighten around your muscles and give you that look you are after.
Eat more often
To reduce your body fat percentage you need to ensure you keep your metabolism running fast all day instead of just ticking over. If you only eat a few times a day then your metabolism will slow down, causing you to burn fewer calories and not lose any of that body fat. It is optimal to eat between five and six smaller meals each day. By doing this you are keeping your metabolism working all day long.
Create a calorie deficit
Put in the most simplest terms, this is how you lose body fat. If you are burning more calories than you are eating then your body needs to get them from somewhere and will turn to your body fat for it. If you create a calories deficit each day then your body will slowly start burning away at the fat in your body to use as energy
Drink more water
Water is essential for all processes in the body including fat burning. As well as this water helps to create a fuller feeling, leaving you less likely to snack. instead of drinking soft drinks, try to switch most of your drinks to water. Water contains zero calories so will allow you to feel fuller and keep hydrated whilst not taking in more calories.
Eat more protein
If you are going to build that 6 pack muscle protein is key. Protein is essential for the body build muscle and you are going to need to increase the amount you consume if you are going to put on muscle. You can eat protein at any time of the day but there are optimal times to consume protein including just after working out and in the morning & evening.
As well as building muscle, protein also makes you feel fuller than many other foods. Therefore if you are eating high protein foods you are going to feel fuller for longer and less likely to consume extra foods throughout the day. When you are trying to lower body fat you also do not want to lose any of your hard-earned muscle so ensuring you are consuming enough protein is critical.
It can often be hard to get enough protein from your diet without consuming more calories. Instead, Whey protein shakes are your best bet. Whey protein shakes allow you to consume a lot more protein with little fat or calories. The optimal time to take your protein shake is after your workout but they can be consumed at any point in the day.
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Carbs are essential to our diet and provide us with energy. However there are some times that are better to consume carbs than others. For example consuming carbs late at night before you go to sleep is not optimal. The best time to be consuming carbs is straight after a workout. This is because during a workout your muscles get damaged. After this your body then needs carbs as energy to repair your muscles.
Cut out unhealthy foods & eat clean
A lot of lowering your body fat will probably come as common sense. Instead of eating unhealthy foods, replace them in your diet with clean foods such as fruits and vegetables. if you are really serious about cutting body fat then you need to keep your diet clean if you want to lower your body fat percentage. Furthermore foods which are high in carbs such as white bread should also be avoided as these just encourage your body to store fat.
You do not need to get rid of all the fats in your diet in order to get a six-pack. Instead you just need to switch from bad fats in food such as dairy and some meats. Instead you should replace them with healthy fats such as olive oil and fats from cold water fish. Take a look at this example og a six-pack meal plan.
Breakfast – Banana, protein shake, eggs
Lunch – Chicken wrap, salad
Snack – fruit/ protein bar
Dinner – Chicken/fish, brown rice,vegetables
Snack – fruit/ protein bar
Planning ahead is essential if you are going to stick to your diet and eat the right number of times day. If you are st work and are unable to prepare nutritious meals then you could easily prepare them the night before and bring them with you in a plastic container. Recording what you have eating and comparing each week will also allow you to keep track when you are trying to slowly reduce the amount of calories that you are eating. There are not a lot of mobile applications available that allow you to set goals and easily track the foods that you are consuming.
The Six Pack Workout
Before we move any further it is important to note that you need to remove the layer of fat above your abs in order to see them. As well as eating correctly, one of the best ways to actually burn that fat is to lift weights. Exercises that work a lot of your muscles such as deadlifts will damage a lot of muscles in your body which then need repairing. Your body will then be burning more calories for hours after as it repairs the damaged muscles. Get a few weights sessions in each week could be the difference between managing to burn that excess layer of fat.
Many people when trying to get a six-pack spend all their time doing loads of sit-ups and expect this to work. Your abdominal muscles are like any other muscle in your body and if you want them to grow you need to increase the resistance in your workout. Doing this will allow you put on mass and build strength in your abdominals.
To put on mass you need to keep reps low. For abs I like to do about 12 reps and between three and four sets on each exercise. This way I know I have given my abs a complete workout that will encourage mass.
When working abs I like to separate them into upper, lower and the muscles around your abs. This includes obliques which are the muscles on the side of your abdominals. Working these as well will allow you to create that ultimate look with all round definition.
To get six-pack abs you do not need to work them everyday. You need to ensure that there is enough time for them to repair in between workouts. I like to work abs twice a week. For one workout I will focus on lower abs and for the other workout I will focus on upper abs.
Take a look at these two workouts for your upper and lower abs:
Weighted Crunch – 4*12 once you can do this start to increase the weight you are using
Right Oblique Crunch – 4*12
Left Oblique Crunch – 4*12
Crossover Crunch – 4*12
Plank – 1 set holding in position until failure. Ensure you have got the correct form.
Bicycle Crunch – 4*12
Hip Circles – 4*12 You can use ankle weights to increase the level of resistance.
Straight Leg Reach – 4*12 You can use ankle weights to increase the level of resistance.
Kneeling Side Bends – 4*12 increasing weight once comfortable.
Plank – 1 set holding in position until failure. Ensure you have got the correct form.
Try using both of these workouts, once each week and a few days apart. As well as this there are also plenty of other moves which you can incorporate into your workout including some of the following.
Hanging leg raise
To do this you need a bar up above you. Place two hands on the bar and let your body hang. keep your legs straight and raise them up to a 90 degree angle and then bring them down again. Try not to do this too fast as you will feel it more if you slow it down
Hanging knee raise
This is similar to the leg raise. You need to let your body hang but instead of keeping your legs straight you need to bend them and then raise them towards your stomach.
To do this you need to sit down with your knees bent in front of you. Then put your hands together and move the top half of your body. This will work your obliques and lower abs.
Long arm crunch
To do this you need to lay down flat on your back. Then stretch your arms out all the way behind your heads and join your hands together. After this do a crunch as you normally would but keeping your arms stretched out above your head.
Half leg curl
To do the half leg crunch you need to get into the position you normally would to do a crunch. However you need to then place each of your hands on the knee in front of them.After this curl up similar to doing a crunch but moving your hands up the legs they are placed on.
A side plank is similar to a normal plank. However instead of placing both your arms on the ground, you place one on the ground and the other on your side as you lie sideward. Doing this will allow you to work the obliques on each side of your abs.
To do heel taps you need to get into the position you would to do crunch but then need to lay back and place both your arms out to the side. Then go to do a side crunch but instead touch you heel.
If you are loosing body fat and also building muscle on your abdominals then you should soon start to see the results. However it is important to remember getting a six-pack does not come overnight. It will often take many months to achieve that desired look. If you need to keep motivated then try taking pictures of yourself at the start and then take more periodically in the months following so that you can see your progress.
Supplements are great when trying to get a six-pack and they are very popular. For trying to get a six-pack our main recommendation would be protein as it will repair your muscles and keep you feeling fuller. if you are planning a long workout then a pre workout is also a good idea.
You may also want to take measurements of body fat and weight etc. However do not feel discouraged if you do not see your weight change as muscles weighs more than fat. if you are building muscle as well as losing fat then you are unlikely to see significant changes in weight. Instead you can measure your body far percentage and how this changes to keep motivated.
The Six Pack Mentality
If you are really serious about achieving a six pack then your mentality and motivation will be really important. Six pack abs take dedication to maintain all the hard work you are putting in. If you are looking to stay motivated then set yourself the goal that you want to achieve and when you want to achieve it by. Just remember that you are not going to get great abdominals overnight.
If you are starting to get bored of the same routine after a few weeks then start to change it up a bit. You do not have to stick to the same routine all the time and it is a good idea to keep it fresh. Changing your routine will work your body in different ways and keep you motivated. You may also want to have a cheat meal every now and then. This will stop your cravings and help you stay focused towards the overall goal.
If you are still stuggling with motivation then try to put yourself around people who are looking to achieve the same goals. A training partner is great for staying motivated and pushing yourself further.
If it doesn’t challenge you, it doesn’t change you.