Copyright (c) 2008 Ed Scow
Abs, abs, abs. Everybody wants a nice set of six pack abs. Or if you’re not after the six-pack abs, you at least want a nice firm and toned stomach.
Something that looks good with your shirt off or in a bikini.
But how do you get it?
Do you need to follow some weird diet? Do you need to take a magic fat burning supplement? Do you need to buy the latest abs gadget off a television infomercial?
No, no, no. You don’t need to follow a weird diet, you don’t need to buy a fat burning supplement (that doesn’t work anyway) and you especially don’t need to buy the latest abs gadget off an infomercial.
Nutritionally speaking, you just need to make some minor tweaks and changes in order to get your body to start burning more of your stubborn stomach fat.
Start by eating more fiber. Stick with lots of fruits and vegetables and keep the grains to a minimum.
You also need to make sure you get enough protein and fat. Yes I said fat. Your body needs a certain amount of fat in order to function properly and there have been studies that show that people who consume more foods rich in Omega-3 fatty acids, such as salmon and other cold water fish, and nuts, like almonds, lose more stomach fat than those who didn’t.
So stock up on your Omega-3 rich foods and get more protein.
When it comes to exercise, you don’t need to live in the gym. Nor do you need to do nothing but cardio. Quite the opposite, actually. You need to stick to more resistance training and interval training if you really want to lose stomach fat and get a firm, toned stomach or six-pack abs.
Your workouts should consist of lots of movements that work your entire body, and shouldn’t be split into “parts”. Meaning stick with exercises like push-ups, squats, lunges, planks, mountain climbers, dumbbell swings, etc. and stay away from movements that don’t work much muscle and don’t burn too many calories like bicep curls and triceps kickbacks or those silly leg machines that move like the old “Thigh Master” home workout gadgets.
Your workouts should also take less than 30 minutes. By sticking to that timeframe, you’ll ensure you keep the intensity level up, meaning you’ll burn a lot of fat in as short a period as possible.
When it comes to abs specific workouts, you don’t need to spend lots and lots of time devoted to crunches, sit-ups, leg lifts, etc.
In fact, you can get an awesome abs workout done from the comfort of your own home in as little as 4 minutes.
The next time you’re working out, try this circuit after your regular workout.
1A) Mt. Climbers – 30 seconds 1B) Squat Jump with Knee Tuck – 10 jumps 1C) DB Swing – 10 reps
Rest 20-30 seconds after the DB Swings and perform the circuit as many times as possible in 4 minutes.
Here’s a quick run-through of the exercises:
Mt. Climbers – Lie on the floor in the top push-up position so only your hands and feet are on the floor. Brace your abs and begin the exercise by flexing one knee and bringing that knee toward your chest, return to the starting position and bring the opposite knee toward your chest. Repeat in a swift tempo, alternating back and forth like you’re running, (or climbing a mountain, surprise surprise) for 30 seconds.
Squat Jump with Knee Tuck – Stand up straight and tall with your feet shoulder width apart. Progress into a normal bodyweight squat and as you reach the bottom, explosively stand back up so you jump off the floor as high as you can. As you jump into the air, bring your knees toward your chest by flexing your abs. Land lightly on your toes, steady yourself and repeat.
DB Swing – Stand with your feet slightly wider than shoulder width holding a dumbbell with both hands. Squat down while letting the dumbbell go between your legs, but not behind you. Explosively flex your glutes and stand up as you swing the dumbbell straight out in front of you until it’s at chest height. Slowly return to the starting position and repeat.
Perform that mini-circuit a few times a week after your regular workout and I guarantee you’ll notice our stomach shrinking and a nice set of abs appearing within a matter of weeks.
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