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How To Get A Six-Pack In One Month

How To Get A Six-Pack In One Month

I have a six pack. Ok. Sometimes I have a six pack. Ok, Ok. For like 2 months of the year I have a six-pack. I mean, give me a break. I am not a fitness model or anything. I am just a regular old 37 year old. But, I can whip out a six pack given a month’s notice.

I am not going to sit here and insult everyone’s intelligence and effort by saying everyone is going to be able to pull off a six pack in one month. One month is not long enough for some peoplebecause there are many factors that go into fat loss. Genetics, current weight, current diet, injuries, etc.

But, there is not a doubt in my mind that almost anyone could have a six pack. If you exercise regularly and you eat somewhat healthy, have an injury free body that only carries a small spare tire and can be pushed hard, it is definitely possible for you to make your abs pop with a month’s notice. The way is simple but it requires some discipline and hard work and it goes like this:

Number 1 Six-Pack Rule: Create Calorie Deficits!!!

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    Despite all the diet voodoo you read and hear about, losing fat comes down to one tried and true simple fact. You need to burn more calories than you take in. That is how you get rid of fat sitting on your belly and covering up the abs that are living under there.

    So how do we create calorie deficits?

    1. Cardio AND Weights!

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      There are basically two schools of thought in the fitness world regarding cardio for fat loss. There are the high intensity cardio folks and the steady state cardio folks. High intensity cardio will get you a faster burn quicker, but it is a lot harder. Steady state cardio will take you longer to burn the same calories, but it is more sustainable. Pick whichever one you want and remember that all that matters is the calories you burn.

      Just hitting cardio will do nice things for your body. It will lean you up, but it better be combined with weights, otherwise you will be plenty skinny without an ab in sight. When I want to get my stomach ready for taking off my shirt, I never stop hitting the weight room. I just add my cardio on to the time I train. I may lift lighter than usual with less rest in between sets, in order to balance the stress and strain of the added cardio, but I keep lifting, because the more muscle you have, the more fat you burn, as I said above, we are all about burning those calories!

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      2. Diet

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        I cannot sit here and suggest a specific diet that will work for everyone. Everyone is different and I don’t think diets as a whole work. You have to know your body and know what works for you to lose weight. I personally use intermittent fasting as a means to maintaining a functional eating plan for myself. It has a lot more health benefits than simply weight control.

        If you eat lots of lean protein, about as many grams as you weigh, eat lots of greens, fruits and veggies, and fill the bit that’s left with some healthy carbs and healthy fats, I’m confident to say that you are on the right track for fat loss and a six-pack.

        3. Drink Water!

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          A gallon a day. Drinking water helps you to stave off hunger as well as helps with water retention – a big issue when trying to get that six-pack showing. Get a gallon jug, fill it up in the morning and every time you’re are hungry, jug water before you reach for food. Most of the times we seem hungry it is because we are thirsty, so stay hydrated and you will eat less.

          4. Stop Spot Training

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            I just want to dispel a general myth about weight lifting. You cannot burn fat in particular areas of your body by spot training. More often, you can only build muscle by doing so. Spending 20 minutes a day at the gym doing crunches and planks are not going to burn belly fat. Your time is better spent elsewhere in the gym to maximize results.

            5. Diet Pills and Weight Loss Supplements

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              Most of the diet pills out there are chalked full of ingredients that have never been actually linked to fat loss, or are seriously dangerous when taken in dosages high enough to make a difference. I recommend you skip the diet pills and weight loss magic and just put in the hard work necessary to achieve your six pack goals.

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              Exercises to do for your six-pack

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                We have addressed some of the simple advice for getting your six pack, it’s time to look at some of the exercises you can do to make you’re abs pop. The key here is not to constantly train abs, as we discussed above about the myth of spot training, but you should be throwing in some ab work at the end of your workouts 3-4 times a week in order to bring them out.

                Below I list a few of the best exercises that you can fold into any workout. I suggest you pick two of these exercises and hit about 3 sets of 30 reps for each every other workout.

                Cable Crunch

                Bicycle Crunch

                Hanging Leg Raise

                Spiderman Plank

                Lower Ab Leg Lift

                Conclusion

                Bringing out your six-pack requires hard work, discipline, structure and some physical and mental pain. If anyone tells you any different, they are lying to you. There is no secret, mystical fast track way to make your abs pop. So put in the work, create caloric deficits, exercise regularly with weights and cardio, eat clean and healthy, stay hydrated and skip all the magical promises that are out there. If you do all this, you can get your six-pack showing in a month and you can keep it for as long as you continue to put in the work!

                Featured photo credit: Jasminko Ibrakovic via shutterstock.com

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                Last Updated on February 18, 2019

                8 Best Cardio Workouts for Efficient Weight Loss

                8 Best Cardio Workouts for Efficient Weight Loss

                When people think of cardio, usually a boring treadmill, elliptical machine, or other mundane activity comes to mind. But that doesn’t have to be the case.

                When you’re short on time or easily distracted, there are a variety of fat-burning cardio alternatives that will increase your body’s metabolism, boost weight loss, and keep you interested.

                Here’s a list of different types of cardio workouts:

                • Steady State (Burns less fat, but isn’t as demanding on the body)
                • Interval Training (Burns more fat)
                • HIIT
                • Spinning
                • Stairs
                • Weight Training (Supersets) short rest periods
                • Weight Training (Compound Sets) short rest periods
                • Machine Circuit Training

                And I’m going to talk about each of them in detail:

                1. Steady State

                Steady state cardio involves working at a low to moderate intensity — around 60 to 70 percent of your maximum heart rate, for a sustained period of time. This type of cardio doesn’t burn a huge number of calories, but it does burn a high percentage of fat tissue for fuel, and it isn’t too draining.

                An example of steady state cardio would be a long outdoor walk at a moderate pace. Interval training, on the other hand, is much more intense.

                2. Interval Training

                Similar to HIIT but with exercises that are slightly longer in duration, interval training alternates levels of intensity. For example, if you enjoy running, you would run or sprint for 30 seconds, then bring down your heart rate and walk for two minutes.

                Pick two intensities per interval, usually one at 85 percent of your maximum heart rate and the other at 60 percent, and alternate between them. I find that 85% for 30 seconds and 60% for one minute, not only burns more calories but increases my energy level as well.

                Another example would be jumping rope. Jump rope for two minutes, rest for one minute. Begin again, this time jumping rope for one minute and resting for one minute. On the third and final round, jump rope for 30 seconds and resting for 30 seconds. Repeat five sets of this routine.

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                3. HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training)

                Have a busy schedule? Fifteen minutes a few times a week is all you need. HIIT is an extremely popular workout because it can be done quickly, burn calories in a short amount of time, and can even be done in your home or during a lunch break at work. And the best part – You don’t need any equipment.

                With the use of your body weight, HIIT is typically 20 seconds of high intensity exercise followed by 10 seconds of active rest which means your heart rate remains elevated for the entire 15-minute workout.

                Check out this HIIT routine by Fitness Blender: 15 Minute HIIT Workout

                4. Spinning

                Spinning is a great way to get your heart up and keep it up in a 45-minute spin class. Our thighs and back are our largest muscles so they work the hardest.

                To get the most out of spinning, try to stay out of the saddle throughout an entire spin class. That way, you are forced to hold up your body weight which burns more calories and increases intensity.

                It’s also great for stabilizing and building strong core muscles, versus cycling outdoors, where most of the time you are sitting in the saddle and going for distance (steady-state cardio).

                5. Stairs

                One of my favorite places to get out of the gym for cardio and trim fat from my thighs and butt is the Santa Monica Stairs, near California’s most popular beach. Climbing 170 steps a few times builds the glutes, leans the thighs, strengthens the calves, and builds endurance.

                So, if the gym is not your scene and you love the outdoors, climbing stairs is a great alternative. Find a place with multiple steps, do six or seven rounds, and you’ve easily burned around 600 calories.

                6. Supersets

                A superset is two exercises that work opposing muscle groups, such as biceps and triceps, quadriceps and hamstrings, or different body parts such as the lower and upper body with little to no recovery between sets.

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                The superset may include two to five sets of 8 to 15 repetitions of each exercise or more.[1]

                So, if you love to workout with weight-training but aren’t really feeling cardio, supersets with no more than 30-second rest periods between exercises will keep your heart rate up. Not only will you build muscle, you will burn fat!

                For example, say you are doing a leg workout, five sets of exercises with high reps and low weight is all it takes to turn your weight-training into a cardio workout.

                Here’s one of my leg training workouts:

                i. Dumbbell Step-Ups on a secure bench or box (4×15, each leg)

                ii. Front Squat (4×15)

                iii. Wide Stance Dumbbell Goblet (4×15)

                iv. Leg Extension (4×15)

                v. Leg Curl (4×15)

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                  Photo Credit: Shape Magazine

                  vi. Front Squat


                    Photo Credit: Stack

                    vii. Wide Stance Dumbbell Goblet Squat

                    viii. Leg Extension

                    ix. Leg Curl

                      Photo Credit: T Nation

                      7. Compound Sets

                      Compound exercises are exercises that recruit muscles in the entire body, such as pull-ups, squats, bench press, etc. However, a compound set simply means to “compound” the number of different exercises into a series of sets with little or no recovery between, similar to supersets.

                        This may be accomplished by performing four to five exercises for the same muscle group, opposing muscle groups or total body exercises performed in succession such as full body extensions, followed by squat/cleans and complete the compound set of compound exercises with lunges with biceps curls.

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                        Compound sets put stress on the body and are great for expending additional calories while strength-training.

                        8. Machine Weight Training Circuit

                        Like compound exercises, a machine circuit workout targets the entire body, upper body, lower body, or core. The difference is, with the use of machines instead of free weights, muscle strength is increased by by making your muscles work against weight.[2] By limiting rest periods between exercises to 30 seconds, your metabolism will go into over-drive!

                        Machines also give you better control over the exercises, which decreases risk of injury.

                        Here’s a machine circuit training example: Muscle and Strength Machine Workout

                        The Bottom Line

                        The above-mentioned workouts should be completed within 30 minutes, unless you’re taking a class which is typically 45 to 60 minutes, giving you time to get on with the rest of your day.

                        By keeping your rest periods to a minimum between exercises, your heart rate will stay elevated and you will burn more calories, get lean, and have more energy.

                        Don’t be a gym rat, spending unnecessary time doing lengthy workouts that give you minimum results. For efficient weight loss, perform these workouts three times a week and watch the fat melt away while achieving your fitness goals.

                        More Resources About Weight Loss

                        Featured photo credit: Spencer Dahl via unsplash.com

                        Reference

                        [1] Mountain Life Fitness: Super sets, compound sets and giant sets
                        [2] Better Health Channel: Resistance training – health benefits

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