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ALEXZANDRIA999 SparkPoints: (14,401)
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Posts: 181
12/13/12 10:36 A


There is a lot of good advice here but to be a bit more specific . . .

Washboard? That's a tall order but flat and toned is total reasonable. One word of advice: PILATES! I think it gets overlooked by "serious" strength trainers but there is nothing that will target those ab muscles like Pilates. Of course, when I say "target" this is not about weight loss but rather gaining definition.

You might also just start a sit-up routine, as many as possible and work up every day.

For legs - calf raises and squats are going to be your best exercises for fast and noticeable definition. Work your way up (if you need to) to using weights while doing these. Gym-style calf extension machine is great for this.

DMJAKES Posts: 1,635
12/12/12 2:09 P

Emily - I agree with the poster above that the flat stomach/washboard ab look you're going for is difficult to achieve. Many of the models and athletes you see with that kind of physique have spent years getting there.....and are at a VERY low body fat percentage, which is hugely difficult to maintain.

If you don't want to lose weight, I'd suggest focusing on making your diet as healthy and nutritious as you possibly can. If you're not already doing so, track your food here on Spark for maintenance and see how many of your ranges you can hit on a daily basis.

Then, focus on some serious strength training. If you're not familiar with the concepts, check out the book The New Rules of Lifting for Women by Lou Schuler. It's got pictures and descriptions of the moves, and workouts already spelled out for you. Make sure you're challenging yourself and lifting to fatigue. Work toward 2 or 3 full body workouts a week. Throw in a couple of sessions of cardio (30 minutes max--again work to fatigue) and AT LEAST one rest day a week, and you should see results you'll be pleased with.

JENMC14 Posts: 2,786
12/12/12 10:15 A

I don't think washboard flat abs in 7 months is realistic in many cases, but I don't know any specifics about your height, weight, body fat percentage, etc. All I know is "size 8", which could be a lot of things. YOU HAVE TO START IN THE KITCHEN! no amount of insanity or this program or that program will give you abs. You have to eat at a deficit to lose the fat. And, the thing is, if you're relatively thin already, you'll likely need to actually build some muscle first, then lose the fat, which will definitely take more than 6 months. A 6 pack is all about bf percentage. You'll probably have a flat(ish) stomach around 17-18% bf, but most women won't really have "abs" until they're under 14% bf, which can be pretty difficult to achieve. I'd definitely look at bodybuilding resources and fitness model competition guides to get a realistic idea of what you'll need to do. For many women, 14% bf is not maintainable year round.

Also, I would definitely start now. Why not tweak some eating habits and get some workouts in so you'll have a headstart for the holidays? I mean, you'll likely gain a bit if you plan on really indulging, so why not get ahead of it?

Edited by: JENMC14 at: 12/12/2012 (10:16)
EMILY566 SparkPoints: (65)
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Posts: 14
12/12/12 5:49 A

Hello Everyone!

Wow what a lot of brill tips for me!! Thank you!!

I am quite fit anyway i already wear a size 8 clothing but just would like to tone up everything! I do a lot of pole dancing classes each week - (if you havnt tried it, its brilliant fitness and great for toning! - people think its all about sexiness and taking you clothes off but not at all)

so i do exercise each week anyway but want to step it up in the new year i would start now but have a large family and many fiends that i have plans with in the next few weeks - meals etc so would not be able to stick to my goals and fail before ive even began

i work well with targets and when i start somethin i do not give up easily - i have high self motivation. so 07.01.13 (25 days and counting) is my start date and i cant wait to begin - because this is for my wedding such a good purpose i know i will stick at it. and when i havw the toned body ive been longing for i will not be giving it up so you are right and i will be maintaining it for life!


guys and you think i have a realistic target of getting a washboard flat stomach in 7 months? and do you think doing insanity will achieve this - i am planning to put the majority of my time and energy into this to make it happen - dont get me wrong i do not want to me to skinny as i do not like that look - as i said i only wear a size 8 clothes but have some major wobbly bits on my stomach that need to go!!! please give me advice/ anything! xxx

DALCANT757 Posts: 152
12/9/12 12:09 A

I agree with the last comment. It's not an easy workout. It's discouraging to burn out and really easy not to decide to stick to the schedule. However, if you have good motivation, you may be able to keep up with it. It's like boot camp, where it would be impossible to handle the situation on your own, but doable with the support and shared suffering of others. I suggest getting your significant other on board. I was able to stick with it for a little bit with my wife, but quickly fell off when she decided to call it quits.

SIMPLELIFE2 Posts: 707
12/8/12 7:12 P

You said you are going to start with Insanity. What is your current fitness level? What exercises have you been doing? If you are a beginner and new to exercise, I don't think that is a good place to start. You don't have any of the basics -- neuromuscular coordination, endurance, core strength, agility, etc. -- to safely handle the intensity of that routine.

You want to challenge yourself and progress, but if you aren't ready, you will either not stick with the program because it is too hard or you will injure yourself.

LUANN_IN_PA Posts: 26,768
12/8/12 12:06 A

I agree with the others!

Start now, making small changes. There is no reason to wait over a month to start....

TACDGB Posts: 6,136
12/7/12 11:31 P

abs are bulit in the kitchen by what you eat. I am a big beliver in eating a clean diet of no processed foods. And why are you waiting til after the holidays.....? why not start now? It's not a diet anyway it's a life style change.

ZORBS13 SparkPoints: (202,123)
Fitness Minutes: (197,688)
Posts: 15,874
12/7/12 7:43 P

I agree, starting after the holidays and an event "end date" suggests a diet mentality. Holidays happen in real life, learn to navigate around such events.

KRISTEN_SAYS SparkPoints: (82,009)
Fitness Minutes: (48,676)
Posts: 5,092
12/7/12 6:53 P

You've been given good advice, but I will add that you shouldn't go overboard on the food around the holidays because it may set you back even farther and it might make it that much harder to start. Why not start a healthy diet and some kind of exercises now?

EMILY566 SparkPoints: (65)
Fitness Minutes: (0)
Posts: 14
12/7/12 8:28 A

Thank you everyone! I am looking into starting insanity in january and following there nutrition guide = would you recommed this - and think this would work for me?

Thank you

MPLANE37 SparkPoints: (79,230)
Fitness Minutes: (79,333)
Posts: 2,170
12/7/12 7:47 A

Your goals are not impossible, but you should be aware of what it takes. Check out some body building programs, your main interest is the "cutting" phase of the program, since you want to get rid of the fat. In order to get a flat stomach, probably you should be hitting 18% of body fat.

JENNILACEY SparkPoints: (81,972)
Fitness Minutes: (86,286)
Posts: 2,489
12/7/12 7:20 A

You can't target fat loss with strength training. Strength training builds muscle. If you have fat around your stomach the only way to get rid of it is through creating a calorie deficit and cardio to lose weight all over your body. In addition to strength training to maintain the lean muscle.

Generally, people with a flat stomach (particularly women) have a very low body fat percentage, sometimes to the point of being unhealthy.

MOTIVATED@LAST Posts: 15,460
12/7/12 6:59 A

I am sure that you will get a number of posts recommending leg or abdominal exercises. But the truth is you CAN"T target where you lose weight from. Energy is delivered to the muscles via the bloodstream, NOT from being absorbed from surrounding fat stores.

What you can do is to continue to reduce your overall body fat, and sooner or later some of it will come off the belly.

EMILY566 SparkPoints: (65)
Fitness Minutes: (0)
Posts: 14
12/7/12 5:56 A

Good morning everyone!! i am getting married in August 2013 and an craving to have that flat stomach i have always wanted - not only for the wedding day but heading to some sun for my hen do and for our honeymoon - so need to have the flat stomach i have always wanted.

i dont want to loose weight but need to tone, stomach and legs mainly.

Pleaseeeee give me any tips or best ways you have found to achieve my ultimate goal!!! i am starting on 07.01.13 so i can enjoy christmas - but gathering all my information now so i am ready ready ready!

thank you xxx

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