Talking about #demabs …and how to get them

A question posed more often than not is, “How do I tighten my abs?”. You can replace that with anything about a tight core, tight midsection, getting rid of the muffin top, etc. You get the point right?

The core is one of my FAVORITE body parts and also one of my most challenging. My core, or midsection, never stays as lean as my back, legs or arms. I do, however, know a thing or two about getting a strong and tight core. So…are you ready to get started?

rockin abs

NUTRITION.

What you eat will determine 100% whether or not people can see your abs. We all have them, but seeing them is a different matter entirely. If there are a lot of salty, sugary or processed foods (OH! and fake sugars) the abs will remain hidden…unless your a 15-year-old male athlete, then eat what you want and enjoy your youth :)

Balance is key when it comes to good core nutrition. You need proteins, carbohydrates and fats in balance to get the most from your core AND digestive system. Withholding nutrients can cause inflammation in the center where the majority of the body’s digestive system and energy are stored. Focus on whole foods first, then supplement as needed with your lifestyle. Pay attention to what you eat and how your body responds. Some of us can get gassy and bloated with certain foods, so make a note of it and try to eat those foods in moderation. The only time a food should be avoided completely is if you have been tested for an allergy OR eating that food causes great intestinal pain.

Veggie belly :)

Veggie belly is a term to explain the bloat that comes from a LARGE volume of veggies consumed in the diet. It is nothing to be concerned with and shouldn’t alter your consumption of veggies unless you’re about to bare all in a tiny swimsuit. Veggie belly will usually only last about 2-6 hours post meal. Regular workouts can help eliminate most of the bloat anyways.

After 1

ABDOMINAL MUSCULATURE

We ALL have abdominal muscles. There are a few key factors to drawing them inward and creating a sleeker looking physique. Women tend to want “FLAT” abs. This is achieved through Pilates like drawing inward and always encouraging the abs to draw in and up. If you’re wanting a 6-pack then you will need to BUILD those muscles out a bit. It’s important to realize that the core muscles are like any other muscle. They have similar functions and will grow when placed under pressure. That side bend with the weight you’re doing….unless you want your obliques (waistline) to grow OUTWARD, stop it. Your best bets for a sleek and strong midsection are plank variations, twisting movements such as bicycle crunches, wood chops, and twists with a medicine ball, as well as hanging leg raises and back extensions. If you want to create a fuller look to the abs try adding weighted crunches and cable crunches to your rotation.

HOW OFTEN SHOULD I WORK MY ABS?

Abs are like any other muscle, but if worked properly they do not need quite as much time to repair. I work my core 4 days per week, alternating between weighted and non-weighted days.

FINAL ADVICE:
Your abs SHOULD work during every single workout. If you are working legs at the gym, you better have a tight core. If you’re hitting back, make sure your abs are engaged before every single rep. It may take a bit of time to get used to, but if you make sure your abs contract before each movement then your workout will be safer and more effective overall.

Check out these ab workouts to get you started to a GREAT midsection:

 

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