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Secrets to Fabulous Abs

pHion Balance  |  0 Comment

Looking for ways to get fabulous abs? Whether it’s time for swimsuit season or making the rounds at the holiday parties, having great abs is a top fitness priority. Unlike the past when the plan of attack was endless abdominal exercises, today’s trainers say that abs workouts should be no more than 12 minutes, three times a week in order to give the muscles time for rest and recover, necessary for progress to occur. Trainers also emphasize that abs work should include core exercises to help improve strength, flexibility and balance.

Reducing overall fat level is the most significant step in getting those fabulous abs. Few debate whether fat reduction or muscle building is more important; both must be done in concert.  Part of your workout must include intense cardio exercise such as running, biking, dancing or HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training). Interval training is gaining in popularity because it offers variety. It can be done anywhere with a combination of your favorite types of workouts and is an efficient fat burner.  In addition to cardio, you need have a full body weight training routine, though lifting heavy weights is not necessary. When your muscle percentage increases, your body becomes a more effective calorie burner – even at rest. Cardio and weights compliment each other because cardio alone can cause muscle loss and weight training without cardio can lead to inflexibility and bulkiness.

Because you will be burning so many calories and building muscles, you need to eat nutritionally; skipping meals will only slow down your metabolism. You keep your energy and blood sugar levels constant; eat 5-6 small meals spaced out about between 3 hours, with each mini-meal consisting of fruits, vegetables and a lean protein. Breakfast should be the biggest meal and dinner should resemble a snack. Avoid eating after your last meal. If you need to add a meal, don’t deprive yourself; nonfat, unsweetened Greek yogurt with blueberries will fill you up. Because you are training so hard, it’s also essential you take all your vitamins and nutrient supplements.

Some of the key exercises for your abs are very familiar: crunches, sit-ups, core exercises and leg lifts. You can focus on two or more exercises one day and work the others the next, alternating so you give the different muscle groups in your stomach recovery time. Increase intensity by adding weights, using a lightweight medicine ball or positioning yourself on an incline bench to make a sit-up more challenging.

Before you start your Fabulous Abs program, decide on a specific goal – the amount of pounds to lose, a time frame, even a picture of an Olympic athlete whose abs you admire - so on those days when you get frustrated, want to skip your workout and eat the frozen cheesecake your mother left in the freezer, you can visualize yourself achieving that goal – and into your workout gear!

Here's to your wellness,


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