Have you been doing the crunches trying to lose the belly fat and get those six-pack abs? Flat abs represents the apex of physical fitness for men. Although many want it, only few have the courage to take on the challenge to acquire it. Some men work out for years trying to get ripped abs. It takes commitment and dedication. Some believe it has nothing to do with genes, but rather everything to do with just how much time, energy and discipline one is willing to put in to the exercise and dieting regime that is needed. Achieving a six pack not only makes a guy look good, but feel good and move better as well. We all have abdominal muscles which mean we can all build stronger muscles and reap the rewards of the health benefits that come with it. The deciding factor will be just how badly we want it.
Dispelling the Six-Pack Abs Myth
Losing fat and building muscles are the two main goals of the exercise and dieting regime for the six-pack abs. We all have a layer of fat over our abdominal muscles. Even if we have a nicely toned and muscular abs, but the layer of fat is still lying there, no one will be able to see it. That layer of fat is the main target of the entire process. Dieting and exercise must become a part of your daily routine. The ratio for the amount of dieting to exercise needed is approximately 90:10 but most people has that backward as they tend to exercise more and diet less. That is the reason so many target their belly fat by doing a lot of sit-ups and crunches. There is this misconception out there that the abdominal muscles will start showing through once you exercise that muscle away. It’s all just a big myth. A failure to get the diet right will lead to a failure to get anything right, and ultimately there will be no six-pack abs.
Health Benefits of Having a Solid Core
The core muscles of your body includes your abdominal muscles, back muscles, and the pelvis muscles. There are a number of health benefits to be reaped from losing the excess stomach weight and keeping the muscles strong and toned. Let us take a look at some of them.
- It improves your overall strength.
- You will have a better posture.
- Your range of motion and flexibility will improve.
- You’ll find it easier to carry out your daily activities of which include lifting your laundry basket, taking out the garbage and loading the dishwasher.
- You become less susceptible to neck and back injuries.
- You will builds your abdominal muscles and possibly obtain a 6-pack.
- Your back muscles will become stronger.
Principles of the Six-Pack Diet
The main aim of a six-pack diet is to provide an optimal fat burning environment that will cause fatty acids to be released (broken down to provide energy). This is achieved by keeping the body’s insulin levels low. Why? Insulin is a storage hormone and when it is present in the body beyond a certain level it affects the body’s ability to release fat. That is the reason strong emphasis has to be placed on the keeping the levels of insulin at a low. Insulin is a powerful hormone and you will need to take control of it if you are to lose that fat. Insulin has positive muscle building qualities, and you will need to learn to harness these while at the same time minimizing the hormone’s fat storage capabilities. This can be done in several ways.
- Eating a lot of low glycemic foods (GI carbohydrates).
Low glycemic foods allow for a slower release of glucose and this result in favorable insulin levels that promotes the release of body fat. You can research a glycemic index database to obtain a list of GI carbohydrates and their glycemic index (GI).
- Minimize your intake of carbohydrates.
Carbohydrates are an important part of any weight loss regime. You must eat carbohydrates to help lose weight. People often target carbohydrate as one of the foods that cause them to gain body fat and therefore try to eliminate them from the diet. While they do contribute to the levels of insulin in the body, the main focus should be on the portions we eat rather than on a total elimination. You also need to ensure the portion you consume is not too low. Carbohydrates supply the body with the fuel that feeds our brain and nervous system. The complete metabolism of fatty acids cannot take place without carbohydrates. Remember that the entire aim of a weight loss diet is to provide the ideal fat burning environment that will cause the release of fatty acids.
In a nutshell; a total elimination of or an intake of too little carbohydrate will leave the brain and nervous system starved of the fuel they need to function properly, and fatty acids will not be metabolized to facilitate the weight loss process.
If you are serious about getting that six pack abs, you cannot bypass the diet and exercising regime. Remember it takes more dieting than exercising to achieve this or you may end up with well-toned muscles that no one can see. You have to focus on getting rid of the fat.
Peter Barfield is a life coach and personal trainer. His blog posts about health and lifestyle issues can be found on various sites. Learn more about an effective sculpting system, visit the link.