You’ve seen it on social media and in magazines.
“Abs are made in the kitchen.”
I don’t know about you, but no matter how hard I look in the refrigerator or how many times I’ve cleaned out the pantry I cannot seem to find any abs.
Just kidding, of course. 😉
I recently got an email from someone who has heard this common saying and wanted to know what exactly she should eat that would give her abs.
My honest response was there is nothing you can eat that will give you abs.
So is the saying “abs are made in the kitchen” complete B.S? Not entirely.
Abs are absolutely reveled in the kitchen – meaning eating fresh, whole foods high in fiber, lean protein and healthy fats while avoiding foods high in sugar, vegetable oils and sodium while avoiding alcohol and other liquid calories is going to be crucial to having your six pack show.
But all the dieting in the world won’t give you abs unless you build them first.
Abs are MADE in the gym and REVEALED in the kitchen.
Once you get your diet in line and lose that unwanted belly fat you can reveal a beautiful, toned midsection, if you’ve done the work in the gym to create it.
It is important to know your “abs” are made up of 3 different muscle groups: your upper and lower abs, and your obliques.
To have a strong and sculpted six pack you need to include exercises for all of these areas.
So today I am sharing 3 exercises that are simple and easy, plus I’ve included how you can put them together for a killer core workout!
1. Upper abs: crunches
Traditionally we’re used to doing crunches or sit ups which are still very effective. In fact research has shown the basic crunch or sit-up is more effective than just about any other exercise to target the upper abdominal muscles. A few things to note for proper form:
Hands lightly cupping either side of your ears
Chin off your chest (imagine you have a tennis ball under your chin)
Elbows out wide (not close to the ears or head)
One common mistake is coming forward and relying on the neck muscles and upper body entirely. If you keep the front of the body really open and just focus on squeezing your core muscles, you’ll get a much more effective ab workout even while not coming very far off the ground.
2.Lower abs: leg lowers
One of my favorite lower ab exercises is the leg lower.
Take your legs to the ground and back up. If you’re a beginner and it hurts your lower back there are ways to make this less challenging, you can always start with one leg at a time. You can keep your upper body flat on the mat or you can lift it for more challenge.
Keep the feet together
Legs straight with a slight bend at the knees
Lower back stays flat on the mat
3. Obliques: twists
This is the one area that sometimes we forget about and neglect. My favorite exercise for the obliques is a simple twist.
Sit up and tall, with knees bent and feet on the floor. Lean back and just twist your torso side to side.
Try not to round the back
Keep your knees and hips stationary
If you want to make it more challenging, lift your feet off the ground and lean back further (still not rounding in) keeping your chest up and your spine long and tall.
Example Ab Workout
4 Total rounds:
15 leg lowers
15 oblique twists (per side)
You can make any of these exercises more challenging simply by adding medicine ball or a dumbbell.
If you’re putting together an ab workout, remember to include exercises for your upper abs, lower abs and your obliques.Using this formula, you can be sure you always have a well-rounded, killer core workouts!
So work your core hard in the gym and work your self-control hard in the kitchen and you’ll be on your way to a flat, tight and toned midsection.