Advertising
Advertising

Last Updated on January 8, 2018

How to Get a Six Pack: The Proven Way to Never Fail Again

How to Get a Six Pack: The Proven Way to Never Fail Again

I remember that one client approaching me in the gym, where I work as a trainer.

He told me that he’s been training for so long to get a six pack, but still hasn’t seen results yet. He asked me how to get a six pack and if I can recommend him some ‘stuff’ to get the six pack faster. He was referring to steroids.

Instead of answering his question, I asked him how long he was training so far. He told me that he’s been training for years. This sparked my curiosity, as I only see him in the gym a few times a year. I asked if he’s training at home in the meantime. He told me that he takes a break every 3 months, because he’s not seeing results.

This habit of regularly taking breaks prevents that person from chiseling his midsection. Getting a six pack takes more time than you think.

     Three Common Six Pack Myths

    “The first principle is that you must not fool yourself – and you are the easiest person to fool.” – Richard Feynman

    Where the person taking multiple breaks failed is consistency. You can do hundreds of core exercises one day, but if you don’t do it on a continuous basis, you’re doomed to fail.

    I have to be honest here: real results usually only start coming after three months to a year. There is no shortcut. Most people start in May to get their six pack for summer. That’s about one month. That’s too short of a time period and you will be frustrated if your six pack has not arrived yet. Your goal should be able to motivate you, but it should also be fairly realistic.

    Most people fail in getting a six pack because they’re bound to some stubborn six pack myths. Some beliefs that the media, your friends or unscientific newspapers has engrained in you. Let me tell you the three biggest myths so they won’t stop you in achieving your goals.

    #1 No Carbohydrates In The Evening Or Other Diet Fads

    I was following a No-Carb Diet once. I’m ashamed to tell you this, but it’s true. I’ve done this diet fad for two weeks. The result? I had no energy in the gym and was angry all the time. I lost some pounds – which I gained all back immediately after stopping the diet.

    You don’t need to follow the latest top-notch diet trend that you’ve read about in a fitness magazine. Stick to the basics. Carbohydrates will not make you fat. Carbohydrates are fuel for your body and brain. Neither will intermittent fasting surely lead to weight loss. Long-term habit change is king. Simply start eating better today than you did yesterday.

    You have to realize that six packs are made in the kitchen. You can’t put out a fire while pouring oil on it. Pay attention to your nutrition. Eat whole, un-processed plant foods. Plants are lower on calories overall than meat and contain more fiber, which means they will make you feel full faster and with less calories.

    Advertising

    #2 Follow A Rigorous Workout Schedule

    I remember trying out high intensity interval training. HIIT is a high performance training made for athletes. I decided to start my workout routine at 5AM in the morning. I stuck to this workout schedule for two days.

    My workout schedule was too rigorous. 100 sit-ups a day won’t bring you a six pack. Working out two hours for 7 days won’t get you closer to that chiseled midsection either. What matters, like in all aspects of life, is consistency and a long-term view. Ask yourself: Is the current workout schedule that you’re following sustainable and focused on your goals?

    The best workout for a six pack is, based on my experience, a whole body workout. With a focus on compound exercises. Compound exercises are for example: the squats, deadlifts, pull ups and bench press. Basically movements where a lot of muscle groups are trained simultaneously. This will burn more calories and increase your testosterone levels. Supplement this workout schedule with two times low-intensity, long-duration cardio per week. Endurance training for 30 minutes minimum.

    If that’s too hard, no problem. Start with 5 minutes and then slowly amp up.

      #3 Six Packs Are Purely Genetical

      I was not blessed with a six pack from birth. Most people that you see walking around with a chiseled midsection aren’t. To some people it comes easier, other people have to work really hard for it.

      Advertising

      The tendons are genetic, though. Genetics play a role in determining whether or not you will have four, six or eight packs.

      Genetics will not determine, whether you’re willing to work hard enough to lose that excess fat around your belly or strengthen your core muscles. Everyone is able to lose fat and everyone is able to build muscles. What truly matters is how important it is for you to reach your goal.

      Where Most People Fail

      My little brother used to tell me of his first attempt to get a six pack. He went jogging, approximately for 10 minutes, to the next supermarket and bought himself an energy drink. He then returned home.

      Little did he know that this ‘exercise-routine’ actually lead him worse off in the long-term. The energy drink contained more calories than his jogging exercise would burn.

      Most people fail to see the big picture. I certainly did. My sixpack took years to be revealed. It could’ve taken me less time if I could’ve fixed my mindset earlier.

      Your nutrition may be top-notch but you may be drinking and partying every weekend, which drastically blunts your exercise results. Or your exercise routine may be great, but you’re never sleeping more than 4 hours a night and are constantly stressed out.

      Advertising

      You have to look at the big picture. How good is your workout routine? Is your diet in check? If not, what could you do to make it better?

      The Proven Way to a Six Pack

      Get Your Mindset Right

      You’ve heard me talking about your mindset in my latest posts. Because it’s such a crucial factor. Your mindset is one of the biggest parts that you would need to change and it’s also the hardest one.

      Ask yourself: how bad do you want it? What is my motivation? Even with all the tips in check, it usually takes years of training until the six pack slowly fades in. Everyone that is telling you that they got a six pack by doing that magic exercise or swallowing that magic pill, is just, sorry to tell you that, lying in your face.

      Use a Shopping List

      Clean up your diet. Once I’ve stopped living with my mother, following a healthy diet turned out to be much easier. Not because my mother is a bad cook or forces us to eat McDonalds – no. But because she often bought chocolate and cookies for special occasions. These special occasions turned out to be nearly every evening when I came home after work.

      You can’t eat buckets of ice cream at 1 AM in the morning when you’re not buying the buckets of ice cream. It can be that easy. Start using a shopping list and buy healthier foods.

      Hire a Personal Trainer

      If you’re still searching for more accountability: hire a personal or an online trainer. The latter often being a little bit less expensive. A trainer can be the person that fully understands your health goals and that guides you to a healthier you with a chiseled midsection.

      Advertising

      Reading such articles is a great start, but studying a couple of articles won’t replace a couple years of experience of a professional.

      If you want to know more about how I get a six pack, watch this animated video: Six Pack – How To Really Get One

      More by this author

      Florian Wüest

      Qualified and experienced fitness trainer and online coach.

      What Really Works: How to Relieve Lower Back Pain Effectively 7 Super Fast Remedies for a Pulled Muscle in Neck Is Building Muscle Possible in Your 40s? (Build Muscle the Batman Way) How I Lose Weight, Get to 9% Body Fat and Build Muscles with Vegan Diet How to Gain Muscle Mass Naturally (A Step-By-Step Guide)

      Trending in Health

      1How to Control Your Thoughts and Become the Master of Your Mind 212 Best Brain Foods that Improve Memory 3How to Keep Yourself Awake at Work Without Caffeine 48 Things to Watch for If You’re Considering Being Vegetarian 510 Amazing Health Benefits Of Beer

      Read Next

      Advertising
      Advertising

      How to Control Your Thoughts and Become the Master of Your Mind

      How to Control Your Thoughts and Become the Master of Your Mind

      Your mind is the most powerful tool you have for the creation of good in your life, but if not used correctly, can also be the most destructive force in your life.

      Your mind, more specifically, your thoughts, affect your perception and therefore, your interpretation of reality.

      I have heard that the average person thinks around 70,000 thoughts a day. That’s a lot, especially if they are unproductive, self-abusive and just a general waste of energy.

      You can let your thoughts run amok, but why would you? It is your mind, your thoughts; isn’t it time to take your power back? Isn’t it time to take control?

      Choose to be the person who is actively, consciously thinking your thoughts. Become the master of your mind.

      When you change your thoughts, you will change your feelings as well, and you will also eliminate the triggers that set off those feelings. Both of these outcomes provide you with a greater level of peace in your mind.

      I currently have few thoughts that are not of my own choosing or a response from my reprogramming. I am the master of my mind, so now my mind is quite peaceful. Yours can be too!

      Who Is Thinking My Thoughts?

      Before you can become the master of your mind, you must recognize that you are currently at the mercy of several unwanted “squatters” living in your mind, and they are in charge of your thoughts. If you want to be the boss of them, you must know who they are and what their motivation is, and then you can take charge and evict them.

      Here are four of the “squatters” in your head that create the most unhealthy and unproductive thoughts:

      1. The Inner Critic

      This is your constant abuser. He is often a conglomeration of:

      • Other people’s words; many times your parents.
      • Thoughts you have created based on your own or other peoples expectations.
      • Comparing yourself to other people, including those in the media.
      • The things you told yourself as a result of painful experiences such as betrayal and rejection. Your interpretation creates your self-doubt and self-blame, which are most likely undeserved in cases of rejection and betrayal.

      He is motivated by pain, low self-esteem, lack of self-acceptance and lack of self-love.

      Why else would he abuse you? And since “he” is actually you– why else would you abuse yourself? Why would you let anyone treat you this badly?

      2. The Worrier

      This person lives in the future; in the world of “what ifs.”

      He is motivated by fear which is often irrational and with no basis for it.

      Occasionally, he is motivated by fear that what happened in the past will happen again.

      Advertising

      3. The Reactor or Trouble-Maker

      He is the one that triggers anger, frustration and pain. These triggers stem from unhealed wounds of the past. Any experience that is even closely related to a past wound will set him off.

      He can be set off by words or feelings. He can even be set off by sounds and smells.

      He has no real motivation; he has poor impulse control and is run by past programming that no longer serves you, if it ever did.

      4. The Sleep Depriver

      This can be a combination of any number of different squatters including the inner planner, the rehasher, and the ruminator, along with the inner critic and the worrier.

      His motivation can be:

      • As a reaction to silence, which he fights against
      • Taking care of the business you neglected during the day
      • Self-doubt, low self-esteem, insecurity and generalized anxiety
      • As listed above for the inner critic and worrier

      How can you control these squatters?

      How to Master Your Mind

      You are the thinker and the observer of your thoughts. You must pay attention to your thoughts so you can identify “who” is running the show; this will determine which technique you will want to use.

      Begin each day with the intention of paying attention to your thoughts and catching yourself when you are thinking undesirable thoughts.

      There are two ways to control your thoughts:

      • Technique A – Interrupt and replace them
      • Technique B – Eliminate them altogether

      This second option is what is known as peace of mind!

      The technique of interrupting and replacing is a means of reprogramming your subconscious mind. Eventually, the replacement thoughts will become the “go to” thoughts in the applicable situations.

      Use Technique A with the Inner Critic and Worrier and Technique B with the Reactor and Sleep Depriver.

      For the Inner Critic

      When you catch yourself thinking something negative about yourself (calling yourself names, disrespecting yourself, or berating yourself), interrupt it.

      You can yell (in your mind), “Stop! No!” or, “Enough! I’m in control now.” Then, whatever your negative thought was about yourself, replace it with an opposite or counter thought or an affirmation that begins with “I am.”

      For example, if your thought is, “I’m such a loser,” you can replace it with, “I am a Divine Creation of the Universal Spirit. I am a perfect spiritual being learning to master the human experience. I am a being of energy, light, and matter. I am magnificent, brilliant, and beautiful. I love and approve of myself just as I am.”

      Advertising

      You can also have a dialogue with yourself with the intention of discrediting the ‘voice’ that created the thought, if you know whose voice it is:

      “Just because so-and-so said I was a loser doesn’t make it true. It was his or her opinion, not a statement of fact. Or maybe they were joking and I took it seriously because I’m insecure.”

      If you recognize that you have recurring self-critical thoughts, you can write out or pre-plan your counter thoughts or affirmation so you can be ready. This is the first squatter you should evict, forcefully, if necessary:

      • He riles up the Worrier.
      • The names you call yourself become triggers when called those names by others, so he also maintains the presence of the Reactor.
      • He is often present when you try to fall asleep so he perpetuates the Sleep Depriver.
      • He is a bully and is verbally and emotionally abusive.
      • He is the destroyer of self-esteem. He convinces you that you’re not worthy. He’s a liar! In the interest of your self-worth, get him out!

      Eliminate your worst critic and you will also diminish the presence of the other three squatters.

      Replace him with your new best friend who supports, encourages, and enhances your life. This is a presence you want in your mind.

      For the Worrier

      Prolonged anxiety is mentally, emotionally and physically unhealthy. It can have long-term health implications.

      Fear initiates the fight or flight response, creates worry in the mind and creates anxiety in the body.

      You should be able to recognize a “worry thought” immediately by how you feel. The physiological signs that the fight or flight response of fear has kicked in are:

      • Increased heart rate, blood pressure, or surge of adrenaline
      • Shallow breathing or breathlessness
      • Muscles tense

      Use the above stated method to interrupt any thought of worry and then replace it. But this time you will replace your thoughts of worry with thoughts of gratitude for the outcome you wish for.

      If you believe in a higher power, this is the time to engage with it. Here is an example:

      Instead of worrying about my loved ones traveling in bad weather, I say the following (I call it a prayer):

      “Thank you great spirit for watching over _______. Thank you for watching over his/her car and keeping it safe, road-worthy, and free of maintenance issues without warning. Thank you for surrounding him/her with only safe, conscientious, and alert drivers. And thank you for keeping him/her safe, conscientious, and alert.”

      Smile when you think about it or say it aloud, and phrase it in the present tense; both of these will help you feel it and possibly even start to believe it.

      If you can visualize what you are praying for, the visualization will enhance the feeling so you will increase the impact in your vibrational field.

      Now take a calming breath, slowly in through your nose, and slowly out through the mouth. Take as many as you like!

      Advertising

      Replacing fearful thoughts with gratitude will decrease reactionary behavior, taking the steam out of the Reactor.

      For example:

      If your child gets lost in the mall, the typical parental reaction that follows the fearful thoughts when finding them is to yell at them.

      “I told you never to leave my sight.” This reaction just adds to the child’s fear level from being lost in the first place. Plus, it also teaches them that mom and/or dad will get mad when he or she makes a mistake, which may make them lie to you or not tell you things in the future.

      Change those fearful thoughts when they happen:

      “Thank You (your choice of Higher Power) for watching over my child and keeping him safe. Thank you for helping me find him soon.”

      Then, when you see your child after this thought process, your only reaction will be gratitude, and that seems like a better alternative for all people involved.

      For the Trouble-Maker, Reactor or Over-Reactor

      Permanently eliminating this squatter will take a bit more attention and reflection after the fact to identify and heal the causes of the triggers; but until then, you can prevent the Reactor from getting out of control by initiating conscious breathing as soon as you recognize his presence.

      The Reactor’s thoughts or feelings activate the fight or flight response just like with the Worrier. The physiological signs of his presence will be the same. With a little attention, you should be able to tell the difference between anxiety, anger, frustration, or pain:

      • Increased heart rate and blood pressure; surge of adrenaline
      • Shallow breathing or breathlessness
      • Muscles tension

      I’m sure you’ve heard the suggestion to count to ten when you get angry—well, you can make those ten seconds much more productive if you are breathing consciously during that time.

      Conscious breathing is as simple as it sounds; just be conscious of your breathing. Pay attention to the air going in and coming out.

      Breathe in through your nose:

      • Feel the air entering your nostrils.
      • Feel your lungs filling and expanding.
      • Focus on your belly rising.

      Breathe out through your nose:

      • Feel your lungs emptying.
      • Focus on your belly falling.
      • Feel the air exiting your nostrils.

      Do this for as long as you like. Leave the situation if you want. This gives the adrenaline time to normalize.

      Now you can address the situation with a calmer, more rational perspective and avoid damaging behavior.

      Advertising

      One of the troubles this squatter causes is that it adds to the sleep depriver’s issues. By evicting, or at least controlling the Reactor, you will decrease reactionary behavior, which will decrease the need for the rehashing and ruminating that may keep you from falling asleep.

      Master your mind and stop the Reactor from bringing stress to you and your relationships!

      For the Sleep Depriver

      (He’s made up of the Inner Planner, the Rehasher and the Ruminator, along with the Inner Critic and the Worrier.)

      I was plagued with a very common problem: not being able to turn off my mind at bedtime. This inability prevented me from falling asleep and thus, getting a restful and restorative night’s sleep.

      Here’s how I mastered my mind and evicted the Sleep Depriver and all his cronies.

      1. I started by focusing on my breathing—paying attention to the rise and fall of my belly—but that didn’t keep the thoughts out for long. (Actually, I now start with checking my at-rest mouth position to keep me from clenching.)
      2. Then I came up with replacement strategy that eliminated uncontrolled thinking—imagining the word in while breathing in and thinking the word out when breathing out. I would (and do) elongate the word to match the length of my breath.

      When I catch myself thinking, I shift back to in, out. With this technique, I am still thinking, sort of, but the wheels are no longer spinning out of control. I am in control of my mind and I choose quiet.

      From the first time I tried this method I started to yawn after only a few cycles and am usually asleep within ten minutes.

      For really difficult nights, I add an increase of attention by holding my eyes in a looking-up position (Closed, of course!). Sometimes I try to look toward my third eye but that really hurts my eyes.

      If you have trouble falling asleep because you can’t shut off your mind, I strongly recommend you try this technique. I still use it every night. You can start sleeping better tonight!

      You can also use this technique any time you want to:

      • Fall back to sleep if you wake up too soon.
      • Shut down your thinking.
      • Calm your feelings.
      • Simply focus on the present moment. 

      Becoming the Master of Your Mind

      Your mind is a tool, and like any other tool, it can be used for constructive purposes or for destructive purposes.

      You can allow your mind to be occupied by unwanted, undesirable and destructive tenants, or you can choose desirable tenants like peace, gratitude, compassion, love, and joy.

      Your mind can become your best friend, your biggest supporter, and someone you can count on to be there and encourage you. The choice is yours!

      Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

      Read Next