During the summer months, it’s tempting to want to show off all of your hard work at the gym. And what gym rat doesn’t want a solid six-pack of abs? Here we show you all you need to know to work towards your goal of having the ultimate six-pack.
Eat the right things
One of the most important rules to follow is to make sure that you’re eating the right things. You’ll want to focus on your macros, and get the best quality nutrition you can. When it comes to your meal prep, focus on lean protein – think fish, seafood, meat, dairy, poultry, eggs – healthy fats, such as avocados, nuts, lean meat, oily fish – and try to moderate the carbs you eat. If you must go for carbs, choose healthier options such as sweet potatoes, squash, oats, and rice.
If you fill your body with the right kind of fuel, it’ll start to pay off in dividends when you hit the gym. Fibre is a must, as it will keep you feeling fuller for longer, so you’ll be less likely to snack on other foods throughout the day. If you want a healthier alternative to your snacks, give our high protein flapjacks a go.
You can increase your protein intake with our Whey Matrix protein powder, which will give you a helping hand when recovering from your workouts. Multivitamins wouldn’t be a bad shout, either, as these will help give your immune system the boost it needs.
Shakeup your workout routine
When it comes to your workout, more isn’t necessarily better. Instead, knock back some Amino Energy pre-workout, and give your workout routine a shakeup. Swap out some of your low intensity cardio training for some HIIT (high intensity interval training) to give your metabolism a boost. You’ll also benefit from the afterburn effect of the intense HIIT workouts.
Circuit-style and interval training cause a greater level of excess post-exercise oxygen consumption, or EPOC. This helps to burn fat with shorter workout times. Combined with our Amino Energy, you’ll be able to stay focused for longer, and smash through that workout.
Don’t eat more calories than you burn
The golden rule for getting your abs to show is to make sure that you’re eating slightly less calories than you burn – otherwise known as a caloric deficit. It won’t matter how hard or often you workout if you’re eating more calories than you burn, so you should aim to stick to this general rule as much as possible.
You can create a deficit either by increasing the calories you burn, cutting the calories you consume, or a combination of both. Abs won’t show through for men if your body fat is greater than 10%, so take a look at the method you’ve chosen and assess whether you need to be eating fewer calories, or increasing the amount of exercise you do in a day.
Drink plenty of water
Are you really hungry, or are you really in need of a drink? It’s easy to mistake hunger for thirst – so instead of tucking into your next meal, try reaching for the shaker bottle first. You’ll notice this is particularly the case during bouts of warmer weather, so make sure to keep a full water jug with you at all times so you can take a good drink.
It’s a good idea to keep either a shaker or a water jug filled with water on you or near to hand during exercising, when your at work, or if you’re out and about in the car. If you’re working out, add some BCCA Raw to your shaker to help you recover and build new muscle after a workout.
Concentrate on big lifts
Contrary to what you may think, focusing on bigger lifts such as deadlift, squat, row, and overhead press will be more beneficial for your six-pack than concentrating on your arms or abs. This is because you’ll burn more calories by working on the bigger lifts, and will result in greater muscle recruitment.
Eventually, this will lead to an increase in metabolism and fat burn, putting you on the right path to the six-pack of your dreams. These bigger lifts will help challenge your core strength, too!
Think about the angles
If you’ve been following the above rules, your abs should be starting to show. To get them to really pop, try and include a variety of angles that you use in your direct ab workout. While regular crunches will work the lower, middle, and upper regions of your abdominal muscles, you’ll want to be challenging your deep core muscles, obliques, and transverse abdominal muscles too.
Throw some Palof presses, plank holds, reverse crunches, Russian twists, and bicycles into your workout routine to give all of your abdominal muscles a proper challenge. This way you won’t just be focusing on the main three regions of your abdominal muscles and will have a better six-pack to show for it.
Have you made your mission this summer to smash the six-pack? Let us know over on our Facebook page!
Lead image: VladimirFLoyd via Getty Images.