The Low Down on a Six Pack
Updated: Aug 31
Every one wants a six pack! And why is that?
Because it is difficult to achieve and shows that you have made it to the fitness elite.
Search for six pack online and you will be inundated with crazy ways of achieving this. Search an App store and there will be dozens of Apps guaranteeing results.
As everyone wants a six pack there will be plenty of companies trying to sell you a six pack in forms of Apps, training programs, supplements and topical creams.
You may as well smother your abs with camel crap as you’ll end up with the same poor result.
These are the more commonly asked “six pack” questions:-
Are there any supplements that will give me a six packIs there a topical cream that will melt the fat on my belly and give me a six packAre there special exercises that will give me a six packIf I drink liquidised onions, kale, spinach and Leprechaun shit will I get a six packIf I do 100 sit ups every day will I get a six packCan I just lose the fat and only the fat on my stomach to show my Abs (“spot reduction”)Can I just lose the fat on my stomach and keep my boobs the same size as I like my boobs (“spot reduction”)
The answer to all of the above is a resounding NO !!
So how do we gain a six pack?
Well the truth is that it does take some commitment to achieve, and a combination of fat loss and muscle building.
Primarily the abdominal muscles need to be built and we need to remove the body fat from the abdominal area so that the abdominal muscles can stand proud.
Removing the Fat
I will explain why this belly fat is difficult to lose without getting deep into the science as it is extremely complex.
Fat cells have a number of receptor sites but these are not all the same. One receptor is an “beta-3” receptor and another is a “alpha-2” receptor. The beta-3 receptors accelerate lipolysis (breaking down of fats) whilst the alpha-2 receptors hinder it.
What this ultimately means is that the fat cells that have more alpha-2 are more difficult to break down – damn you Alpha-2’s!! So any areas of fat that are rich in alpha-2 receptors, such as around the belly, hips and thighs, are going to take longer to reduce.
When you are on a fat loss diet you see great reductions from the arms, chest, face and legs, this is because they contain more beta-3 receptors.
Therefore spot reduction is a myth. So if you read “sculpt your mid section” or “thigh slimming program’ its complete nonsense. Fat loss is an entire body process, and you cannot pick and choose where you lose it from first.
The fact is you can do thousands of sit ups every day until your Abdominals burst out like an alien but you will never see them until you reduce your body fat into the lower range.
A man will need to lower his body fat to below 10% to display his abs and a female below 20%. So you do need to get lean to be able to visually see your abs but you also need to develop them to really get them to pop.
A good full looking six pack requires low body fat levels and a well developed core.
Building the Abdominals
There are many ab exercises you can do but I believe you should train abs the same as every other muscle, and that is with resistance exercises and progressive overload. You do not have to add weight to all your abdominal exercises but if you want to enlarge the abs you will have to add weight to some of the exercises.
My personal abdominal training program
My own abs are work in progress as I am in the process of attempting to thicken them, having had some success to date. After I first lost abdominal fat 8 months into my training I was happy I could visually see my abs but I knew they needed to be thicker. I set out to achieve this and at 50 years old things do not come easy; but as stated above I have had some success and this is my abs program.
Hanging leg raises
Body weight warm up of 8 raises 3 sets of 6 reps with a 5kg dumbbell held with my feet Body weight with oblique twist to failure
Weighted Cable Crunch
3 sets with progressive overload 1 set with lower weight for 15-20 reps
AB Wheel Roller
3 sets of 12 changing angles
I specifically trained abs using the above program two times per week on top of deadlifts and squats which also help thicken the abs, providing a well developed core.
I used the following methods on my fat loss diet:- Calorie counting Macro balancing Flexible dieting
When my body fat was about 8-9% I added fasted training and intermittent fasting to burn away that stubborn belly fat.
What do you think about The Low Down On A Six Pack? Please email me with any questions.
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