How to get Abs Fast is one of the first goals that all fitness enthusiasts aspire to from their first training session.
The belief that abdominal exercises would be the best way to get a flat and defined abdomen is, unfortunately, a myth to be discarded. In fact, the only exercises do not allow you to burn enough calories to a significant reduction in abdominal fat.
A fat abdomen, though sustained by a strong muscular skeleton, will never be carved.
The only advantage that can be obtained from the selective training of these muscles is their toning, which helps to form a true “natural corset“.
A more toned abdomen, with the same body fat, allows you to get a slim and toned figure, as well as preventing backbone, and improve both balance and posture.
The aesthetic appearance is however influenced by other more important factors than simple toning exercises.
First of all, of course, we have the genetic factors because abdomens are very sensitive muscles as written in the genetic code.
There are many differences in the population, there are those who have symmetrical abdomens and who have asymmetric ones, and some who have more or less deep muscular insertions.
Genetics also influence hormonal equilibrium, metabolism, and predisposition of fat accumulation in the abdominal region.
Then, among the factors that can be controlled, we have nutrition, followed by physical activity, lifestyle, and posture.
In 2001 Dr Peter Francis, a member of the American Council on Exercise, studied the effectiveness of 13 different abdominal exercises with or without tools.
Thanks to his studies, made using a technique that allows studying the number of recruited motor fibres and their contraction intensity (electromyography), it was possible to design a more efficient exercise rankings.
The traditional crunch was chosen as a benchmark and attributed 100% theoretical effectiveness.
Among the various types of exercises, the best ever was the one commonly called “bicycle”. This exercise showed an efficiency of 248%.
In the starting position of the bicycle, the subject is lying supine with the back fit to the ground and the hands behind the nape, exercise begins when the sportsman simulates with the lower limbs the pedal, approaching the right elbow at the left knee and the left knee to the right knee.
The study found that among the various exercises the most effective are those in which the abdomens contract to stabilise the lower part of the body, which perform the movement.
At the second place, there’s the “rising of the legs” exercise on the chair of the captain (that structure is present in many gyms which are supported by the back while keeping the body in suspension on the forearms).
It is quite logical to think these results are true as the lower part of the body, in addition to weighing more than the higher one, requires a greater stabilisation effort, which is, of course, responsible for the abdominals.
In fact, we know that abdominal muscles do not have any insertion on the lower limbs.
From this, we can deduce that any exercise involving any movement of the lower limbs is not physiologically correct to train the abdominal muscles. Same thing for those exercises that see the feet tied like the classic sit up.
In these cases, abdominals do not stretch and shrink as during normal contraction but develop a remarkable force while maintaining their unchanged length (isometric contraction).
In conclusion, a last consideration should be given to the proper breathing technique that has not been studied by the present research, but which can considerably increase the effectiveness of the exercises.
Abdominal muscles are exhaling muscles, so in the active phase of movement (when approaching the chest at the basin or vice versa), exhale deeply.
In particular, you empty the lungs from the beginning of the movement so that at the point of maximum abdominal shortening the diaphragm does not obstruct the work of these muscles
Crunch 2 x 20 (the following week instead will be: sit up 2×10) 90 “rest
Twist 1x different repetitions with rod
Bike 20-25 ’60-70% Fcmax
The Crunch will be performed on a horizontal flat bench, extending the scapular part of the rachis in a descending phase outside the bench and performing forced expiration of about two seconds in the phase of maximum contraction.
Reverse crunch on bench 2 x 20 (the following week instead will be: reverse crunch on inclined 2×10) 90 “rest Twist 1x different repetitions with rod
Bike 20-25 ’60-70% Fcmax
The reverse crunch will be performed on a horizontal flat bench, if possible extending the lumbar part of the spine in a descending phase outside the bench and performing forced expiration of two seconds in the phase of maximum contraction.
The twist will be executed at speed for several repetitions with a wooden vacuum shaft. Absolutely do not put a load on us because the twisting force would be deadly for the vertebrae!!!
Engage your transversus abdominis during every workout.
To get the most out of your core-strengthening regimen, take a moment to find the transversus abdominis (your deepest core muscle). Once you’ve found it, you’ll want to keep that muscle contracted and tight throughout the course of your workout.
- Force yourself to take a deep cough. You should feel a muscle in your abs contract, which is the transversus abdominis.
- The transversus abdominis runs deep in your core and extends from your belly button to your rib cage.
- Now that you’ve found the transversus abdominis, practice flexing and tightening the muscle.
- Engage your transversus abdominis every time you work on your core, no matter which routine or muscle group you’re focusing on.
Stretch with segmental rotations
Segmental rotations (rotating your core along the spine) can help work a variety of core muscle groups with relatively little strain. Begin by lying flat on your back, then bend your knees and pull your feet as close to your buttocks as you can comfortably get them. Keep your shoulders pinned to the floor, and focus on only moving your lower body.
- Tighten your abdominal muscles and slowly drop both knees towards the floor on 1 side. Only go as far as you comfortably can – you should feel a strong stretching sensation, but it should not hurt.
- Hold the position for 3 breaths, then return to the starting position. Switch your knees to the other side, hold for 3 breaths, and repeat.
Do a superman flex
The superman focuses on working your lower back’s core muscles. Start out by lying flat on your stomach. Slide a rolled-up towel or a small throw pillow under your hips to help support your back. If you’d like, you can also put a folded towel under your face to help support your head.
- Tighten up your abdominal muscles and lift 1 arm at a time, holding each arm elevated in the air for 3 breaths. Then switch to the other arm and repeat.
- Tighten your abdominal muscles and lift 1 leg at a time, holding each leg for 3 breaths. Then switch to the other leg and repeat.
- If you prefer, you can stretch out both of your arms and legs at the same time; however, if you’re just starting out, you may want to focus on 1 limb at a time to develop a proper routine.
Lift into a bridge position
The bridge works several muscle groups in your core, making it a highly effective exercise. Begin by lying on your back and bending your knees. Plant your feet right in front of your buttocks as though you were about to do a sit up and keep your back as neutral as possible (not arched, but not pressed down either).
- Tighten your abdominal muscles and raise your hips off the floor. They should now be aligned with your knees and shoulders in a straight downward line pointing towards the floor.
- Hold the position for 3 breaths, then return to the starting position and repeat.
Try plank exercises
Planks are a great exercise for building strength in your core. Start by lying on your stomach and lifting up onto your forearms and the tips of your toes. If you can’t get onto your toes, you can balance your weight on your knees and your forearms.
- Keep your forearms and knees or toes on the floor and try to squeeze your elbows and knees towards one another.
- Keep your abdominal muscles tight and your shoulders lined up straight above your elbows.
- Make sure your neck and spine are in a neutral position. You should look down at the floor and your back should not be arched or bent at all.
- While in position, tighten your abdominal muscles. Hold the position for 3 breaths, then return to your starting position and repeat.
Switch to a side plank
The side plank is similar to a regular plank, except it works the core muscles that line your sides instead of your abdominal muscles. Start out lying on your side and balance yourself on either the forearm or hand on that side of your body (whichever you’re more comfortable with).
- Make sure your shoulder is above your elbow and aligned with your hips and knees.
- Tighten your abdominal muscles while you’re in position and hold it for 3 deep breaths. Then switch to the other side, rest, and repeat.
Want to know more? Read our articole ABS: How many are there