Who doesn’t want shredded abs? They are a symbol of physical fitness, and those who have them tend to show them off every chance they get.
There is no need to be jealous. You can have shredded abs as well. You just have to go about getting them the right way.
How to get shredded abs
A huge mistake that many people looking to get shredded abs make is failing to understand why some people have flat bellies while others look like they have a bowling ball tucked underneath their shirt. It comes down to your body fat percentage.
Everyone has abs. It is just often covered up with fat. Your stomach is the first place that your body stores fat when you consume more calories than you burn daily. That means belly fat is also the toughest type of fat to burn off since your body typically goes after fat in other areas before narrowing down on the belly.
You can spend hours doing crunches every day if want, it will not make a difference if you have layers of fat covering them up. If anything, working out your abdominal muscles when you have layers of fat covering them will just make your belly bigger as your muscles grow bigger and stronger.
Belly fat does a lot more than just deprive you of the shredded abs you have always wanted. Belly fat is also the most dangerous type of fat you can have. It has been linked to many serious diseases like diabetes, stroke, and heart disease.
That by itself should be more than enough to motivate you to get off the couch and start working on your six pack. Now that we have successfully ignited a fire inside you let’s take a look at the right way to go about getting shredded abs.
Martial arts classes can help
As we talked about earlier, the most important step you can take towards getting abs that you can be proud of is reducing your body fat percentage. That is where martial arts classes come in. In a one-hour Muay Thai class you can burn up to 1,000 calories. That’s an amazing number of calories burned every hour considering the fact the average person consumes little over 2,000 calories per day.
In other words, you burn off about half of the food you consume daily when you spend an hour in the gym.
The amount of calories burned per hour spent training martial arts becomes even more impressive when you compare it to other common exercise activities. You only burn 400 calories for every hour spent running, while you burn around 250 calories for every hour spent swimming.
Simply put, there are few activities that can compare to the burn you get from martial arts classes. If you are serious about getting shredded abs, you have to find an activity that helps you burn all the extra fat you are carrying with you.
It goes without saying that a good exercise program should be combined with a proper diet for best results. There’s no point doing all that work in the gym then stuffing your face with all sorts of junk food when you are done training. The results you get will be exponentially increased when you combine regular exercise with a diet plan.
Your tummy will naturally become flatter as the extra fat burns off. Once the excess fat on your midsection has been cleared, it is time to start performing exercises that improve the shape and tone of your belly muscles.
Here are a few exercises you can easily do at home:
1) Standing mountain climber
This exercise allows you to kill two birds with one stone. It elevates your heart rate, allowing you to burn more calories, and it is a good to warm up before a martial arts class or lifting weights. It also does a great job targeting your hip flexors and ab muscles.
- To start this exercise, clear the space around you making sure there are no obstacles.
- Make a fist with both hands and keep your hands at shoulder level in front of you.
- Start running in place lifting your knees as high as you can.
- As you lift your right leg up, punch your left hand upwards and vice versa. To increase the intensity of the workout hold weights in your hands.
2) Rock the boat
If you’re like most people, you have probably done a few crunches at some point in your life, so this should feel familiar. The motions you make are a bit similar to the way crunches are performed.
- Start off in a V-sit, keeping your knees bent and your leg parallel to the ceiling. Place your hands under your knees or on your hamstrings. Once you get more experienced, you can keep your hands above your head for the whole movement.
- Using your core muscles, roll backwards slowly gently rounding your spine. Your chin should be tucked in as you roll until your upper back makes contact with the floor while your hips are lifted off it.
- Once your upper back is on the ground, roll forward while straightening your arms and legs. Your backside should be the only part of your body making contact with the floor at that point.
That’s right, old-fashioned crunches are still effective, plus it is an easy exercise to learn.
- Lie on your back. For foot position, there are a few different options. One option is you can bend your knees until they form a 90-degree angle with your hips. Your knees should be right over your hips while your shins are parallel to the ground when you are in the proper position. Another option is to keep your feet on the floor with your knees bent.
- With your hands behind your head to support your neck, raise your shoulder blades by constricting your ab muscles. You can imagine having an apple underneath your chin when doing this to keep the proper form. You don’t want to crush the imaginary apple. You simply want to keep it there. Another trick you can use to keep the proper form is to keep your gaze focused on the ceiling.
- Slowly lower your shoulder blades and repeat until the burn is too much.
Remember, there are many different exercises you can add to your repertoire that will develop your abs, these 3 are just some effective and easy ones. Next time you’re in the gym give them a try.