6-Pack Abs for Athletes | STACK
X

Become a Better Athlete. Sign Up for our FREE Newsletter.

How to Finally Get Those 6-Pack Abs

June 5, 2012

Must See Strength Training Videos


As an athlete, you already know that building beach muscles won’t do much to improve your on-field performance. However, you still want something to show for all that time in the weight room, right?

Many people obsess over Sit-Ups and Crunches and embark on marathon cardio sessions in the hopes that their abs will just pop out one day. Unfortunately, most of that hard work is misspent energy. By following a few simple principles, you can develop the core strength you need for your sport and start seeing those abs you’ve been secretly trying to sculpt for years.

Fuel

You develop core strength through discipline at the gym and six-pack abs through discipline at the kitchen table. Building abs that show is all about removing body fat from your waistline through your diet. To do this, you need to minimize fat and sugar consumption and use stored fat for energy.

Opt for complex carbohydrates to provide maximum energy over a long period of time rather than junk food that delivers only an instant burst of energy. Foods rich in complex carbohydrates include:

  • Sweet potatoes
  • Yams
  • Oatmeal
  • Flaxseed oil

Just don't overdo it. Consuming too much flaxseed oil—or other healthy fats found in avocados and nuts—can slow fat loss. Learn more about the right food choices in my book, Take It Off, Keep It Off. Maintain a strict diet at first to get the physique you want, then shift into maintenance mode with regular exercise and a more lenient diet.

Schedule

Get into the habit of doing 15 minutes of fasted cardio (cardio on an empty stomach) every morning, and watch your body start to change shape. When you work through a short workout on an empty stomach, you’re using stored fat for energy. If you eat breakfast and then do cardio, you’re only burning off some of the food you just consumed. Work out smarter, not harder, not hard.

Core Workout

Build your abs through weights and abdominal work, both of which engage the body's core (the muscles around the spine). All that's required is a commitment to lift weights on a regular basis and a daily five-minute abdominal routine. Women often shy away from weightlifting because they’re afraid of building bulk; but for women, there’s nothing better for developing body shape, posture and tone than lifting weights. For more detailed information, please check out my video on YouTube, where I demonstrate and discuss the ins and outs of abs.

I followed these principles to build my own six pack after gaining 90 pounds on purpose and losing the weight again. Connect with me through Facebook and Twitter for more of the weight loss principles I discovered.

Photo: Simplyshredded.com

Topics: BURN FAT | CORE | ABS
Paul James
- Paul "P.J." James is a health and fitness expert. His book, "Take It Off, Keep It Off," provides eating plans, training routines and step-by-step instructions...
Paul James
- Paul "P.J." James is a health and fitness expert. His book, "Take It Off, Keep It Off," provides eating plans, training routines and step-by-step instructions...
More Cool Stuff You'll Like

7 Exercises That Safely Build Shoulder Strength

7 Strategies for Dealing With a Meathead in Your Gym

5 Isolation Exercises Your Workout Is Missing

Dominate Your Bench Test With This Strategy

How to Design a Greco-Roman Wrestling Training Program

Get Faster by Improving Your Core Mobility

How Often Should You Vary Your Exercise?

4 Sure-Fire Ways to Build a Strong Core

Get a Ripped Core With 6 Advanced Dead Bug Variations

Develop Core Strength for Throwing

3 Sandbag Training Mistakes Athletes Make

Build Powerful Pecs With This Multi-Angle Chest Workout

The Simplest Bodyweight Workout Ever

5 Softball Catcher Drills for Throwing Power

Top 5 Baseball Strength Training Myths

7 Ways to Work Out Competitively Without CrossFit

Improve Your Back Strength with the Inverted Row

The Best Single-Leg Exercises for Youth Athletes

These 3 Single-Leg Movements Will Improve Your Squat Technique

3 Post-Activation Potentiation Combos for Explosive Strength

Blast Through Plateaus with Tempo Sets

A Better Way to Train Your Core

7 Best Lower-Body Strengthening Exercises

Perfect Your Squat Technique With the Unloaded Squat

4 Deadlift Variations to Increase Your Pull

Build Full-Body Strength With 5 Suspension Trainer Exercises

4 Lifts to Build Wrestling Strength

How Functional Training Has Overly Complicated Strength Training

The Science of Building Muscle: 2 Ways to Maximize Hypertrophy

Bench Press Grip Guide: How Hand Placement Changes the Exercise

10 Ways to Get Stronger With a Sandbag

Notice On-Court Results With This Basketball Core Workout

4 Weaknesses That Can Ruin Your Exercise Technique (With Fixes)

Never Bench Press With Your Feet in This Position

Make Lifts More Challenging With Resistance Bands

Break Through Plateaus With the 1-10 Drop Set Method

Don't Train Your Arms Until You Can Do These 4 Things

7 Strategies for Faster Workout Recovery

7-Exercise Core-Blasting Workout

Master the Lateral Lunge to Improve Your Hockey Stride

3 Nordic Hamstring Curl Exercises to Boost Your Performance

4 Exercises to Build True Lacrosse Power

Kyle Lowry's 12-Week All-Star Training Program

3 Explosive Exercises Designed to Increase Pitching Power