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Where Do Abs Come From?

By Julie Fellows

We often hear all sorts of equations about how to build the perfect six pack. Is it 30% Diet, 70% gym? Or indeed is it the other way around? Building abdominal muscles doesn't need to be difficult but it does take commitment. It is neither 30% this and 70% that - it is 100% commitment. You can't out-train a bad diet.

Abs are made in the kitchen

If you go to the gym ten times a week and pick up a fast food meal on the way home then it is utterly pointless. People need to understand the importance of eating clean. This means avoiding processed foods, sugars, alcohol, wheat and white potatoes. It means drinking more water than you think is necessary - this will aid in flushing the toxins through your body too. It means eating fresh, colourful, natural food.

There are of course many diets that will help you shred fat but clean living and cleaning eating is far more sustainable. It is also important to build the muscle up first before shredding the fat if you want that six pack to show in all its glory. It is also vital to remember to "lose fat" not "lose weight". Muscle weighs far more than fat and the scales can be incredibly misleading, so ignore them! If you want to measure your progress then use a tape measure! In today's world, fitness is far more important than weight.

It's a way of life

A well-rounded life style which consists of a solid training program (which is undertaken regularly), a clean diet and lots of sleep will help those abs come shining through. It is not as hard as people think to achieve a washboard stomach, but it is vital to consider nutrition and sleep as well as exercise. By filling your plate with green vegetables and high quality protein and some good fats, you will fuel your body properly. It will also make you feel great. Eating clean and avoiding processed and sugary foods will not only help you get in shape, it will make you feel amazing. University studies have shown how unhealthy eating can make a bad mood worse. Fueling your body with the right nutrients and vitamins will impact more areas of your life than you realize. It will give you more energy and more enjoyment in everyday activities, prevent that slow sluggish feeling that happens from time to time, and enable you to train harder and more effectively than before. Eating unhealthily impacts negatively on all areas of your life, from training to sleeping and from mental alertness to your sex life. There is help to enhance performance, be it in the bedroom or elsewhere, but the correct nutrition can assist too and should not be overlooked.

We have all tried crash diets and new fads to lose the fat around our bellies, but as a general rule, people do not stick to them. They get depressed and frustrated and start to crave all the bad foods that will take them back to square one. To be successful it is important to find balance. Train hard in the gym, drink so much water, sleep as much as you can and eat clean. It's a lifestyle choice, not a diet. When it becomes a lifestyle, it becomes easy. When it becomes a way of life, it becomes the only way. It's OK to cheat on the diet from time to time, one bad meal won't make you fat, but one salad won't make you thin either! So use your head, find your balance and let your body guide you.

Don't forget the Fats!

There are certain foods that will help you reach you your goals, just bear in mind that it is crucial to balance your meals with protein and FATs! Don't forget the fat! Try adding these to your lean proteins:

  • Avocado
  • Nuts
  • Flax Seed Oil
  • Olive Oil

If you are eating red meat or pink fish then you don't need to add the fats, but if you are eating lean meats. such as chicken, turkey, or white fish - then it is crucial to add some good fats. It's all about balance!

Train mean, eat clean, get lean!

Body building works by tearing the muscles and encouraging them to heal again. When they heal after being torn to shreds in the gym, they heal stronger, tougher, and bigger. However, your muscles will struggle to repair themselves quickly without the right nutrition or the right amount of sleep. Be kind to your body. When you are working it so hard in the gym, reward it with the right fuel to help it repair itself. The wrong foods and bad sugars will only hinder the repair process and it will keep that layer of fat there to cover up those beautiful abs too. Your stomach is not a waste bin - don't fill it with rubbish!