Sunday, January 17, 2010
Your Fast-Track to a Flat Tummy & Tight Abs
The New Year is still young, and if you've decided to make this your year for losing the weight and tightening your abs, you're in luck.
Getting a flat midsection really boils down to two things: 1) Getting rid of the fatty layer that is covering your abdominal muscles; and 2) Tightening and toning your abdominal muscles.
The following 7 Tight Abs Tips are your Fast-Track ticket to getting a flat, attractive midsection this year.
Tight Abs Tip #1: Perform challenging strength training abdominal exercises at least three times each week. Your abs are like any other muscle in your body—they need to be consistently challenged in order to become stronger and tighter.
Tight Abs Tip #2: Stop eating junk. Processed foods, refined sugar and high fructose corn syrup do NOT belong in your diet if, especially if you want tight abs. Cutting these items from your diet will allow your body to maintain stable blood sugar levels, alleviating your body's need to store excess sugar away in fat cells.
The fat stores created by excess sugar intake most often accumulate around your wait, covering up your abdominal muscles. Cut these items from your diet and replace them with real whole foods such as lean meats, vegetables, whole grains, nuts and fruits.
Tight Abs Tip #3: Stop doing long and slow cardio workouts. Instead, use HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) for your cardio workouts. HIIT training uses intense bursts of cardio peppered throughout your workout. This is a sure-fire way to rev up your metabolism and to get your fat stores to shrink.
Tight Abs Tip #4: Use resistance with your abdominal exercises. Crunches are great, but your body quickly becomes accustomed to the motion, rendering it less effective. Hold a medicine ball or dumbbell at your chest as you perform your crunches—this will force your abs to work harder, and will achieve better results. Tight Abs Tip #5: Don't be fooled. The market is flooded with 'lose weight' products and products that claim to flatten your stomach. Never waste your time or money on:
So-called packaged health food that comes with weight loss claims. If it's processed in a package with a bunch of chemical additives then it will not help you achieve flat abs.
Abdominal exercise gimmicks as sold on late night infomercials – all you really need is your own body weight, an exercise ball and dumbbells or a medicine ball.
So-called weight loss supplements. The magic pill for flat abs doesn't exist, so you'd be wasting your health and money on a bogus product.
Tight Abs Tip #6: Target your lower abs. It's easy to neglect the lower abs, but they are an important part of the equation. Incorporate the V-Up into your exercise routine:
Starting Position: Sit on the edge of an exercise bench; lean back to a 45 degree angle. Extend your legs out until they are level with the floor.
Movement: Exhale and bring your knees and upper body close together, while contracting your abdominals. Inhale as you slowly release your legs, returning them to the starting position.
Tight Abs Tips #7: Challenge your core often. Don't limit your abdominal exercise to the gym, incorporate core strengthening during daily life and throughout each workout. A strong core is the foundation for flat, tight abs.
There you have it! Seven tips that, when diligently applied, will help you shed the fat and tighten your abs.
But, keep in mind that your results will be seriously hindered if you do the same exercise routine over and over. Your abs need a progressive challenge in order to transform. This means new exercises, different resistance and increased challenge.