So you want to get six pack abs, but you don’t have a gym membership.
No problem my friend.
Despite what you may have heard, you don’t need to lift a bunch of heavy weights with the meatheads at your local gym. You also don’t need to do 45 minutes of boring, monotonous cardio every day.
The abdominals are one of the most confusing muscle groups to train. With all the “B.S.” propaganda floating around, it’s difficult to figure out what techniques actually work.
Why Circuit Workouts Are The Best Way To Train Abs
Circuit workouts are a series of movements that activate primary and secondary muscle groups. When you minimize your rest time, it will elevate your heart rate into a fat burning zone during your resistance training. This allows you to burn fat and build lean muscle simultaneously, without using any weights or expensive equipment.
In my experience as a trainer, it’s best to train your abs with short circuit workouts that last anywhere between 5-10 minutes. I realize this approach may go against the majority of what you’ve heard before. Keep in mind that the masses are always wrong, and getting six pack abs is no exception. In fact, most of the so-called “trainers” out there look like they need to hire their own personal trainer.
Your abs recover much quicker than your other major muscle groups. This allows you to train them more frequently without risking potential injury. But more importantly, it allows you to stay consistent to your ab routine, which is the most important part of the process.
The Abdominal Approach
Don’t fall victim to the “quick fix” mindset that inhibits most people from coming remotely close to getting the body of their dreams. Stop listening to unqualified trainers who are trying to sell you a myth. There is no magic pill that’s going to resolve years of poor dieting and a lack of exercise.
Getting six pack abs is simple once you actually accept the process. Unfortunately, most people will work incredibly hard to avoid working hard. They spend their time and money chasing false promises and gimmicks, instead of actually following a proven plan for success.
Step #1 – Understand The Importance Of Nutrition
Everyone has the ability to get a six pack. However, most people have a layer of fat that covers their abs. If you don’t get your body fat percentages to the appropriate levels, then you’ll never a toned midsection.
So how do you lower your body fat in the shortest amount of time possible?
I’ll give you a hint…it’s NOT by increasing the intensity of your workouts. This is literally the worst mistake that you could possibly make when trying to get a lean body. Take it from me, because I used to train 6-7 days per week. Often times, I would supplement long cardio sessions after with my weight training regimen. I thought that if I could just sweat out all the fat in my body, my abs would eventually start to pop.
Unfortunately, that day never seemed to come along. No matter how hard I trained, I could never get six pack abs. I started to blame my “poor genetics”, and became envious of those who were getting in shape.
I was always familiar with the basic concepts of nutrition. However, I never realized how the foods you consumed mattered more than the sweat equity that you put into your workouts. Once I started making the necessary changes to my diet, I was able to see results relatively quickly.
After a few weeks, I was able to see some toned definition in my midsection. Within 90 days, I had ripped eight pack abs for the first time in my life.
As a trainer that has worked with thousands of people, I can honestly say that nutrition can account for up to 80% of the transformation process. Find a meal plan that is conducive to your goals, and don’t try and out exercise a bad diet. If you stay consistent with your nutrition, you can use cheat meals to help keep you motivated during your transformation. Remember, eating healthy isn’t that hard once you accept the actual process.
Step #2 – Get Your Body Fat Percentages To 10%
This goes hand in hand with your nutrition. If you want your abs to start showing, then you need to get your body fat percentages down to roughly 10%. Until you reach this point, you should focus on your nutrition and water consumption each day.
When you reach the appropriate body fat percentage levels, you can begin training each region of the abdominals. Remember that your abs are made up of three subsidiary muscle groups.
–Rectus Abdominis (upper abdominals)
–External & Internal Obliques (side walls of the abdominals)
–Transversus Abdomins (lower abdominals)
You wouldn’t expect to build proportioned lean muscle by just training your biceps, right? Well, that same mindset needs to be incorporated into your abdominal routine. If you want to get six pack abs, then you need to isolate all three areas of the abs accordingly.
One of the biggest mistakes people make is to neglect the lower abdominal area. This is where the last bit of stubborn belly fat resides on your core. When you train your lower abs properly, it will torch your love handles and give you symmetrical definition in your midsection.
Step #3 – Always Target The Lower Abdominals
I always stress the importance on form when it comes to any type of exercise. However, it’s especially important when training the lower abs. Today, we’re going to do a bodyweight circuit workout that you can perform from virtually anywhere. By performing a series of bodyweight exercises with minimal rest, it will generate different muscle contractions in your core. This will maximize fat loss both during and after your workout is complete.
Here’s a summary of the workout:
-Wide To Narrows
Once you’re done with the workout, feel free to cycle through again. The goal is to minimize the amount of rest between each set so you can elevate you heart rate into a fat burning zone.
When doing Flutter Kicks, it’s okay to gradually pick up the pace during each set. Always make sure that you maintain full control of your legs, especially on the negative portion of each rep.
For Leg Lifts, it’s absolutely critical that you maximize the full range of motion. This is the number one mistake that I see people making when training the abs. You only activate your lower abdominals when you break the point of your waistline on each rep.
For Wide To Narrows, make sure that you always keep your ankles roughly 2-3 inches off the floor. This exercise looks simple, but I promise that you’ll feel the burn within the first 10 seconds. When done properly, this will generate an isometric contraction to your core.
Try this workout 2-3 times per week, but always take a day of rest in between each session. If you’ve never trained your lower abdominals before, then you’re going to feel the soreness the next day. Instead of dwelling on your pain, start to embrace it. This is nothing but your body informing you that growth is on the horizon.
Along with this workout, you need to ensure that you’re eating properly. Don’t worry…that doesn’t mean that you need to eat tilapia and broccoli eight times per day. If you want to get six pack abs, then I suggest sticking with a high protein, moderate fat, low carb diet. Eat lots of lean meats (chicken, ground turkey, etc.) and vegetables (spinach, broccoli, asparagus), and keep yourself hydrated each day. Drinking adequate amounts of water is key to flushing out the excess fats and toxins in your body. If possible, drink half of your bodyweight in ounces of water each day.