If having six pack abs is your goal - do not go out and spend hundreds and/or thousands of dollars on gimmick ab machines. Do they work? That depends on what “work” means - so yes and no.
Yes they can help build muscle – no they do not alone develop a six pack as promised. A well rounded balance of crunches, leg raises and planks will develop muscles also. As with any other muscle do not train abs everyday.
So how do I get six pack abs?
Six pack abs are made in the kitchen! Everyone has muscles in their abdomen – as all movement originates in the core. Standing, sitting, walking, running all originate with stability from the core.
Your goal should be to burn the adipose (fat) tissue around those ab muscles so they show through clearly. A lot of good abs have been covered by layers of fat! A healthy balanced diet and proper exercise will give you the abs that you desire.
Here are a few tips to get you on the right track!
1. Stay away from fried foods.
2. Stay away from sweets and sodas.
3. Have some healthy fat in your diet (i.e. egg whites).
4. Drink a protein shake upon waking (about 30 min. before meal).
5. Eat a small snack before bed to fight off catabolism (i.e. walnuts).
6. Try get at least 1g of protein per pound (170lb man = 170g of protein a day).
7. Plan out your meals when you can.
8. Along w/weight lifting – perform cardio 3 or 4 times a week to burn off fat stores.
9. Always have protein before and after workout (20g before – 40g after).
10. Eat every 3 or 4 hours to keep your metabolism churning fat!
Mix and match these tips and find out what works best for you! And remember your mirror and how your clothes fit are the best scale you can find!