Belly Fat and Six-pack Abs

Lose The Fat and Uncover Those Abs

You want to lose weight, some of that fat that is covering your belly, your real purpose is to get those six-pack abs or that flat sexy stomach, well if you can’t see your six-pack abs it’s because they are covered with fat. If you lose all the fat, you will see your six-pack abs, they are there always, they may not be as well defined as you would like, but they will be there.

Exercise

girl-absMost people wanting a six-pack have the same problem, exercise those abdominal muscles until you are exhausted day after day and you seem to make no progress at all. Exercise alone may very well give your six-pack more definition, but unless you shed the fat, they will still be hidden, you could have a perfect six-pack and never see them if they are covered with layers of fat.

In order to build muscle, yes, exercise is important especially the correct exercise, but in order to be effective, you have to feed them with the correct nutrients as well. Not all food is suitable for building healthy muscle, however, it works out that the nutritious food you need to build muscle is the same nutritious food you need to lose fat.

Nutrition

Heavily processed foods are the worst things you can consume, almost devoid of any nutrition and full of things like the bad and damaged fats and corn syrup. Start eating more natural food, food with the least processing done as possible, and animal products from animals that were fed as they were designed to be, like cows being fed grass, you will naturally get rid of the fat and feed your muscle at the same time. Humans has survived since mankind first came into this world without processed food, not only survived but flourished.

Exercise and Nutrition

Eating a good nutritionally balanced diet means there is no need for supplements, not even the fat reduction remedies, and if you exercise appropriately you will reduce your body fat and increase your muscle mass and bone density and strengthen your joints. Loss of bone density naturally accompanies weight loss and must be catered for, exercise increases bone density, so any diet plan has to include exercise in order to maintain bone density, some form of resistance training is best for this coupled with full body exercises and the correct amounts of rest. Yes, rest is important too, your body needs it to recover from bouts of activity, that’s the way mankind has survived for hundreds of thousands of years, eating natural foods, exercising, and resting.

To get those six-pack abs or that flat sexy stomach for the women, some targeted abs exercise is required, but for the most part, full body exercises are the most beneficial, they also exercise your entire mid section, not just your abs.

Ab Workouts Do Not Cause Stomach Fat Loss

Too Much Belly Fat

This article is from the highly respected nutrition & fitness trainer Mike Geary. In it he covers some of the myths and misconceptions that stubbornly surround the topic of stomach fat loss and why ab workouts don’t produce the expected results.

Most people with the problem of belly fat assume that spot training the abdominal muscles will bring them the quickest and best results but Mike explains why this is just not the case…

It seems that everyone is always asking me what the best ab workouts are to get a flatter stomach. The common belief that ab workouts will help you to lose belly fat is one of the biggest misconceptions I deal with daily as a fitness professional. Almost everyone has varying degrees of excess body fat in the abdominal region, and the best way to burn off that extra stomach fat continues to elude most.

The problem is that most people are searching for the wrong exercises and workout types to lose stubborn belly fat. Most people are searching for some miraculous combination of abs exercises combined into the best ab workout ever invented that will burn off their belly fat faster than you can read this article.

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Unfortunately, ab-specific workouts do NOT burn fat off of your belly. They only tone and strengthen the underlying abdominal muscles. What you really need to focus on is a full body strategic workout that will cause a much greater metabolic rate increase and fat-burning hormonal response from your training program as a whole.

In addition, simply doing cardiovascular workouts will not necessarily create the greatest metabolic response or hormonal response either. What you really need is a much more rounded training program that focuses on training the entire body with resistance training and multi-joint exercises in a higher intensity fashion.

This type of high intensity full body training combined with a healthy balanced diet full of nutrient density on a regular basis, is the real key secret to losing the extra stomach fat that covers up the abs. This is a much better plan of attack than just trying to do ab workouts and hoping that just doing a bunch of ab exercises like crunches and leg raises are going to make you lose your belly fat.

The amazing thing is that the majority of the population still believes that in order to get rid of belly fat, you need to do ab workouts every day using hundreds of reps. I see people giving this type of erroneous advice every day on all of the fitness forums. Please do not waste your time with this type of advice!

Now before you say “how can an abs expert not recommend abdominal exercises”, realize that I do strongly believe that a certain amount of ab-specific exercises mixed into your routines are beneficial. Ab exercises will help you strengthen and tone the abdominal muscles and are useful for other purposes such as a healthy back and posture when done correctly. But the fact remains that ab exercises are not necessary for fat loss.

A much smarter full body resistance training routine and a clean healthy balanced diet are the most important factors. Many of the full body exercises also indirectly work the abdominals and core due to the stabilization required in some of the more difficult variations.

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Discussing Abs Training – The Best Way

Ab Workout and Fat Loss Mistakes

Something a little different today, a discussion between two fitness and nutrition experts with Craig Ballantine interviewing Mike Geary about the right and wrong ways of fitness training, with special regard to ab workouts and getting rid of the fat layer that’s keeping those abs hidden.

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CB: If you want to discover some areas where you may be going wrong in your ab workouts and your attempts at losing stomach fat, I have an interview for you here that you’ll want to read.

In the interview, we discuss the topic of abs training and the biggest myths and mistakes we see in this field.

Here’s a copy of the training portion of the interview below. We’ll discuss the nutrition aspects necessary for losing enough body fat to carve out those six pack abs in another article.
CB: Okay Mike, so where does the average man or woman go wrong when it comes to training abs?

MG: Most people are probably going to be surprised with this answer. In their quest for ‘six pack abs’, the biggest mistake I see people making is wasting WAY too much of their time training their abs directly… pumping away with all kinds of different abs-specific exercises.

I’m sure you know what I’m referring to. The person is trying so hard to get those abs to show, that they’re spending almost all of their time in the gym with hundreds of reps of various crunches, leg raises, twisting exercises, etc. Meanwhile, all of that wasted time directly training the abs could have been better spent on a properly designed full body workout program that would elicit a much better metabolic response and increase the fat-burning hormone levels in their body as well.

After all, losing the stomach fat that is covering the abs is the MOST important aspect for most people to finally be able to make their abdominals visible. Unfortunately, pumping away with hundreds of crunches and leg raises does NOT cause much of a metabolic or fat burning hormonal response.

This is the main focus of my Truth about Six Pack Abs book… full body workout programs and proper nutrition to strip off that stubborn belly fat and reveal the six pack that’s hiding underneath!

Of course it wouldn’t be an abs book if I didn’t focus on ab development too, but I make sure firstly that the most important concepts for lasting body fat reduction are understood.

CB: Do you see any gender differences in mistakes they make? And more importantly, do you see any gender differences in the response to various types of ab training?

MG: To be honest, I don’t really see any need for men or women to train differently. Bottom line… the best exercises are the best exercises regardless of gender.

However, in regards to mistakes I see between genders… Yes, I tend to see women more often are deathly afraid to use weight training with anything but really light weights. That is a shame, because THE most effective way to gain control over your body fat for life, is to maximize your lean muscle that your body carries, as well as working that muscle hard through intense resistance exercise regularly.

It’s important for women to realize that regular strength training using heavier resistance will NOT “bulk them up” (as long as caloric intake is controlled), but rather is one of the key secrets for losing body fat and staying lean year-round. As a matter of fact, some of the leanest females that I’ve trained over the years are the ones that aren’t afraid to work hard with the weights.

I also notice that most women (and a lot of guys too) spend way too much time with slow cardio workouts. This is simply not necessary, and the way I combine high intensity resistance training into full body routines provides enough of a “cardio” workout in itself usually. We’ll get back to this in a minute though.

CB: What about old school sit-ups? Do you use these? Are they good, bad, or does it “depend”?

MG: Sit-ups are a controversial topic. I don’t think they’re good or bad per se, but rather “in between”. I didn’t include them in my workout programs. I simply don’t feel they are necessary, and I think there are much more effective abs exercises to focus on. Personally, I almost never do sit-ups except occasionally for a little variety every now and then.

CB: Give us a weekly sample ab training program. How many days per week? What are a couple of the best exercises you’d pick? How many sets? Reps? Rest?

MG: Well, first I’d like to point out that the full body exercises that make up the majority of my programs indirectly work the abs and the entire “core” area to a fairly decent extent. However, I do include abs-specific exercises into the routines generally about twice per week. The “abs-specific” portion of the workouts generally only take about 5 minutes at most with very little rest between exercises.

Once people are past the beginning phase of gaining some initial ab strength, I try to get them away from the exercises that are too easy, where someone can do 50 or 100 reps, as is frequently common with standard crunches. Instead, I like to focus on higher resistance exercises that actually stimulate the muscle fibers to a much greater degree.

One example of a higher resistance abs exercise is hanging leg raises with a proper “pelvic curl up”. It’s funny but usually someone that has been wasting so much time with hundreds of reps of crunches can usually only do a few solid reps when they first attempt some of these higher resistance exercises.

We also make sure not to neglect some rotational movements, as well as some work for the deeper muscles like the transversus abdominis.

CB: What do you use for burning fat, intervals or slow cardio workouts? Or both? Any gender differences here? Or differences between fitness levels (beginner vs. advanced)?

MG: In most cases, my answer is definitely intervals… or as I like to call it “variable intensity training”. In general, I think slow steady pace cardio is a waste of time, especially if the goal is lasting fat loss.

I think people need to get away from this thinking about “fat burning zones” and calories burned during the actual workout, and look at the bigger picture of what you’re doing in your workout to stimulate the greatest metabolic response in your body… and the best metabolic and hormonal response is achieved through variable intensity training and strength training, not slow steady-pace cardio workouts.

Now I will say that if someone is really deconditioned and can’t handle higher intensity exercise routines just yet, this still doesn’t mean that they can’t simply use lower intensity routines, but still use it in a “variable intensity” fashion, by alternating between higher and lower exertion levels throughout the workout.

That wraps up the “abs training” portion of the interview. We’ll discuss the nutrition aspects that are necessary for losing enough body fat to get visible six pack abs in a separate article.

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Abdominal Exercises – The Real Truth

What’s Wrong With My Abs?

Abdominal exercises are one of the hottest, and yet, most controversial topics in the fitness and exercise industry. Hundreds of ab gadgets, gimmicks, and exercise machines have flooded the market for people looking for sexier and flatter abdominals… that sexy six-pack abs appearance that everyone seeks.

The problem is that most of the abdominal exercises recommended all over the internet, and in magazines, etc, are not necessarily the best method to get that six-pack abs appearance. First and foremost, the most important aspect for great looking six pack abdominals is losing the extra belly fat that is covering them up. To be honest, most people already have decent abdominals underneath, yet the six-pack abs are simply covered up by all of that extra flabby stomach fat.

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Instead of focusing so much on abdominal exercises to make your stomach flatter and more like a six-pack, you will lose much more body fat by focusing the majority of your training time with special combinations of high intensity full-body, multi-joint exercises. The best exercises for losing that abdominal fat are the exercises that work the largest portions of the body at once.

Exercises that work the large muscle groups of the legs, upper and lower back, and chest give you the biggest metabolic bang for your buck in terms of abdominal fat loss. Combining these types of big multi-joint exercises in high intensity super-set, tri-set, or circuit fashion gives you the biggest fat-burning and metabolism boosting response from your workouts.

And that is one of the best kept secrets for flat sexy abdominals that are actually visible as a six-pack!

Now when it comes to abdominal-specific exercises, another mistake most people make is mindlessly pumping away with hundreds of crunches and other meaningless abs exercises that barely give your abdominals much resistance to work against. If you want to actually develop your abdominals to the best extent possible, don’t waste your time with exercises that you can do more than 20 or 25 reps… that means you are definitely not doing an exercise that provides enough resistance to the abs. Exercises that give you enough resistance to get you down into the 6-15 rep range per set works great for the abs.

Generally, higher resistance abdominal exercises that provide a much larger stimulus to the abs come in the form of exercises that involve raising/curling the legs and pelvis either upward or inward closer to the trunk. A couple great examples of these higher resistance abdominal exercises are hanging leg raises or knee raises using a “pelvic curl up”, or an exercise like lying hip thrusts. Many times, the same people that can do 50 or 100 crunches, can’t even complete more than 2 or 3 properly executed hanging leg raises.

If you really want tighter flatter abdominals that look like a six-pack, remember that losing that extra belly fat is the MOST important factor. Also, when it comes to abdominal-specific exercises, always remember higher resistance exercises that involve curling/raising the legs and pelvis upward or inward are what develops the abs to the best extent possible.

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Health and Fitness Begin Here

Nutrition and Exercise

Health and fitness can, essentially, be broken down into two different subjects, nutrition and exercise. Other than illnesses, accidents and genetic faults, these are the two greatest influences on our health and fitness and they can even help alleviate the effects of the other three.

If we sustain our bodies with the correct healthy nutritional food intake, then the cells in our bodies that are being replaced each day, are replaced with healthy cells. If we deprive our cells of healthy nutrients, the foundation of our entire bodies will suffer, not just our waistlines. Inferior cells will be produced and this will affect every part of us, even our immune system.

Much the same can be said of exercise, if we deprive our bodies of good balanced exercise then

English: KUNSAN AIR BASE, South Korea— Airmen ...
English: KUNSAN AIR BASE, South Korea— Airmen
from the 8th Fighter Wing use cardio equipment
at the fitness center. Cardiovascular exercise
is one way to stay fit and maintain weight
according to health and physical fitness experts.
(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

our whole bodies suffer, muscle loss and bone density loss will result and more of the nutrition, good or bad, will be laid down as fat reserves instead of directly building cells, muscle, and strengthening bones and joints.

Good healthy nutrition on it’s own is not enough to sustain a healthy body, and neither is exercise on it’s own enough, we need both in combination to have any success at all in health and fitness.

This blog is therefore about both nutrition and exercise, it is intended to highlight the best of both and also to dispel some of the myths that have become prevalent within the health and fitness industry, especially the food and drugs industry. There is so much hype surrounding this industry that is completely misleading and endangering our health.

The food and drugs industry is there to make money, and nothing else. In spite of trying to give the opposite impression, that they have our wellbeing as their top priority, they don’t, it comes down to money, period. Neither the food nor the drugs industry have our interests at heart, it is so bad that if you look closely enough you could almost imagine a huge conspiracy taking place between them both.

Processing food destroys the nutrition contained in the original food, and the additives do little to replace what is lost. If we are getting the correct healthy nutrition in our daily diet then food supplements are totally unnecessary and some of them are downright bad for us.

For hundreds of thousands of years mankind has not only survived but flourished without the so-called help of the food and drugs industry. Bear that in mind when you see all the advertising we are subjected to on a daily basis.