Everyone dreams of having a perfect set of six pack abs to show off! We work hard to develop abs muscles, but it’s a lot harder to get that six pack than you might think. Here are a few six pack abs myths you need to dispel in order to have a realistic understanding of what it takes to get a six pack:
Myth: You Need Lots of Carbs
Yes and no! Carbs are needed for quick-acting energy, and they’re a vital part of your diet. Without them, you won’t have the energy to power through your workout. However, the faster the carbs are processed, the higher the spike in blood sugar. Low-fiber carbs like sugar, sports drinks, white bread, and sugar-laden cereals are the worst enemy of your six pack, as they cause your body to produce insulin to control blood sugar levels. Insulin hinders fat loss, so it’s in your best interest to keep insulin levels low. To do that, you need to avoid simple carbs, foods with no fiber and very few nutrients. The higher the fiber content of the carbs, the better for your health! Either way, you should be cutting back on carbs!
Myth: You Can Train Away a Bad Diet
This is one of the most common six pack abs myths among the uninitiated. They think they can work off all the extra calories they’ve eaten by spending more time at the gym. How wrong they are! A single bagel delivers around 250 calories. To burn that off at the gym, you’d need to lift weights for 20 minutes or jog for 30 minutes. It takes far more work to burn calories than to consume them. If you’re serious about burning fat and developing that shredded six pack, you need to get your diet under strict control. Only by watching what you eat will you be able to develop that six pack.
Myth: You Don’t Need to Focus on Your Abs
The key to shredded abs: work those abs, along with the other core muscles! You should throw in a wide variety of exercises that hit your core muscles, including (but not limited to) Crunches, Sit-Ups, V-Ups, Jack-knifes, Scorpion Tails, Russian Twists, hanging knee raises, and more. These exercises will push your abs to their limit, leading to an increase in energy storage capacity (also known as muscle growth) in your abs. You have to work them hard if you want to see results!
Myth: You Should Only Focus on Your Abs
Abs work alone isn’t going to give you a wicked six pack. You can’t just focus on that one part of your body, but you have to hit every muscle in your body if you want to see results. Of course, you can perform exercises that engage your core along with your other muscles, such as Burpees, Lunges with Reach, and One Arm Shoulder Extensions. These movements will work your core while pushing your other muscles as well. The result: stronger, better-developed abs, legs, and upper body muscles!
Myth: Train Your Abs Every Day
Do this, and you’ll increase your risk of injury drastically, and you’ll prevent your abs muscles from growing! Your body needs at least 48 hours to recover from a strength training workout. You have to give your abs a break, as that will allow your body to repair the muscles damaged in your previous abs workout. Training your abs every day will actually SLOW your strength gains, and may prevent you from developing those shredded six pack abs you so desperately want.