Just about every time you turn on the television or visit a health website, you are likely to come across an advertisement that promises you “ripped abs” or to teach you “the secret of how to get six pack abs”. You have no doubt seen all the infomercials with celebrity endorsements telling you of the ways, methods and machines that are going to change your life by magically giving you the abs you have always dreamed of. The fact is that none of the machines you see on the Internet or television are going to make a big difference if you are not taking the right steps along the way. There are clear ways to get six-pack abs if you follow a few simple guidelines.
The Most Important Thing is Your Diet
If you have been crying out for six-pack abs for a long time, but never seem to get them, there is one critical thing that you need to know. All the devices in the world and all the crunches and sit-ups you can do will not mean a thing unless you change your diet.
What you eat is going to have a major effect on getting six-pack abs. You have to motivate yourself into making the necessary changes in your diet if you expect to have any positive results. Whether that means resigning yourself to cutting out all those yummy — and fattening — desserts or being stricter with the good things you already eat, you need to discipline yourself and sort out your nutrition plan.
Get Rid of the Fat with Healthy Fat
One of the things you will hear about the most when it comes to losing weight is your fat intake. Just about everyone knows they should cut back on fat if they want to lead a healthier lifestyle, but fewer people know that the right kind of fats can make all the difference as an essential part of your healthy diet.
Your body needs a source of healthy fats to keep the proper balance and to maintain the right insulin levels. Insulin is an essential factor in everyone’s diet, not just for diabetics. Healthy fats are monounsaturated fats or polyunsaturated fats; you can get them from raw nuts (such as cashews or almonds), olive oil, fish oil and other foods of this nature — all of which should already be a part of your healthy diet plan!
You Need Carbs and Protein
No matter what fad diets may tell you about the “dangers” of carbohydrates and protein, your body needs them – it just needs the right kinds and not in excess! Anything in excess is wrong for you when it comes to building a proper diet plan, and carbs and protein are no exception.
The right kinds of carbs are found in brown rice, sweet potatoes, oatmeal, and quinoa and similar grains. They are important to your body and are very beneficial, mainly when eaten as part of your post-workout routine.
Lean proteins make a big difference as part of your six-pack abs diet. Lean meats, such as chicken and fish, also help when it comes to burning fat and building muscle — an important part of your exercise regimen.
Doing the Right Exercises
Despite what you may have seen on television or the Internet, doing hundreds of crunches and sit-ups every day is not the best way to get six-pack abs. The time that you spend doing all of those crunches would be better spent performing other exercises that will benefit your whole body, as well as your abs.
Ideally, you should incorporate multifunctional exercises into your routine that allows you total body movement. This ensures that you use all of your muscle groups, which will go a long way in building overall muscle for your body. The more muscle you build, the more substantial the total amount of body fat you lose, the more toned you get, and the easier it becomes to get your six-pack abs. Try using exercises like military presses, bench presses, pull-ups, and push-ups, among others.
Don't Forget the Cardio
Cardio is an important aspect of any type of workout. You need to get your heart rate up if you want to build muscle and lose fat, and the best way to go about this is through the incorporation of different interval sessions in a cardio workout.
For example, you can do high-intensity exercise for 30-60 seconds, such as sprints on a treadmill or exercise bike, followed by low-intensity work, such as walking. You can also slide in a brief period of abs work after your high-intensity periods, such as doing a quick set of crunches, planks or other exercises.
Allow Yourself a Break
Just because you are pushing hard and saying “I want a six-pack” to yourself over and over in your head does not mean you have to be completely rigid in your diet and workout regimen. You need to allow yourself the opportunity to break routine now and then to preserve your sanity!
It is okay to cheat on your diet once or twice a week, as long as you get right back into your regular routine. Your body and mind will both thank you for the break, and you will be able to maintain a stricter regimen when you know that there are occasional rewards for keeping to your plan. You can indulge yourself once in a while without completely ruining your workout and diet.
The fact is that no matter how much you want six-pack abs, you are going to have to work hard for it. You are not going just wake up one morning and magically have a washboard stomach that appeared in the night; life is just not that easy. You must be ready to make lifestyle changes and put in the hard work and dedication to push yourself to achieve your goal. If you really want them bad enough, you will soon find yourself saying “I HAVE six pack abs!”