“Abs are made in the kitchen”...
“I have a six pack… it’s under here somewhere”...
“You can’t spot reduce fat”...
… I could go on and on with countless phrases that come to mind when the topic of "abs" is brought up.
Heard some or all of these before?
I’m sure you have.
So the BIG question: how do you get abs?
Here’s my tips- broken down into 3 areas!
1. THE COMPARISON GAME -
This is a tough one that I have been guilty of myself! It's so easy to compare our bodies (especially our stomachs) with other people. DON'T! Stop constantly comparing yourself to people on social media that have what you consider the “perfect body”. Getting abs doesn’t mean you need to do exactly what one person with abs does. What works for one girl dancing on TikTok doesn’t mean you have to do it too. Take an approach that is best for your lifestyle. Do not blindly follow! Get inspiration from others, but be able to filter through workouts and information yourself.
2. NUTRITION -
A key component to getting visible abs is proper nutrition. You can continue to do endless ab workouts and although you are building core strength …you may see minimal results due to poor nutrition. Avoid fad diets, starving yourself, and buying into what social media portrays as quick fixes. Do not restrict yourself. Restriction is not sustainable in the long run. It can be a challenge to build a healthy relationship with food and our bodies in general. It’s more than okay to treat yourself and eat your favorite foods in moderation! When it comes to working out and optimal performance on the field, try to start thinking of food as both fuel and recovery so that your body can do incredible things! Limit processed foods and opt for whole foods like whole grains, fruits, vegetables, proteins, and healthy fats. Rule of thumb: If you can’t pronounce the ingredients on the label and/or if it’s filled with added sugar… it’s probably not a great option! Instead, opt for foods with minimal ingredients and names that you confidently recognize.
3. TRAINING -
Abs are made in the kitchen AND through training. You build the muscles through training and they get exposed through healthy eating. Ab workouts are great… I love creating and doing them! Build up your core strength through ab workouts in addition to engaging your core when training other body parts. Often, you are using your core in so many movements that you may not have thought twice about before. Start to become aware of when you’re activating and stabilizing your core in order to build that “mind-muscle connection”. Yoga is a great way to strengthen mind-muscle connection. In order to get visible abs, you’ll need to burn calories through cardio and build lean muscle through resistance training. Try incorporating HIIT style (high intensity interval training) workouts into your training schedule. HIIT is a quick and effective way to burn calories in order to reduce body fat and get those stubborn abs to start to show!
***Side note: For my competitive athletes listen up: Having abs is just a bonus! Instead of having the goal to get a six pack, focus on individual performance goals and becoming the best player and overall athlete you can be! Strive to become stronger, faster, and excelling in your sport, NOT working towards a defined 6 pack. Abs are a product of a consistent training routine and committing to fuel your body for peak performance on and off the field.
At the end of the day, be patient with yourself! Like most things in fitness, sports, and life in general, it takes consistency, time, and being your own biggest fan! Enjoy the challenge and the journey itself.