“I want a six pack” - During my time as a trainer, I’ve heard this LOT. The six pack has become a sort of Holy Grail for fitness enthusiasts.
Until about the last year it was mostly men I had heard this from, however, with the recent Olympics, a new wave of women want the Jessica Ennis look…who can blame them!
Unfortunately, this desire to get the washboard stomach has led to an increased number of people in gyms laying on mats grinding out rep after rep after rep of ab crunches.
Sadly people, crunches on their own aren't going to cut it.
A six pack if the combination of strong, solid abdominals (all of them not just the ones used in crunches) and a low body fat percentage.
The second part is key. In order to get a six pack to show, body fat needs to be at a minimum. Even if you can do a thousand crunches, if your bodyfat is higher than about 10% for guys and 12% for girls, your abs won’t show.
But don’t despair, your good buddy Jack is here to help.
I’m going to make a deal with you Mr/Ms I Want A Six Pack.
I’ll give you a couple of things you can do to help blast off that body fat, and strengthen your abs.
But in exchange you have to promise to clean up your diet. Without a proper diet, there is no point in even trying to reach a six pack.
You are all old enough to know what crap food is and what good food is, so I’m not going to lecture you all. If you want some more specific advice just ask in the comments.
So a quick fat blasting session.
First off we’re going to start with treadmill sprints (if you don’t have access to a treadmill find yourself a big steep hill.)
Set the treadmill up so it’s on a big ass incline – level 9+
Stand astride the belt and ramp the speed up so it’s at a fast run pace for you.
Now the scary part, you’re going to get on while the belt is moving and run for 20 seconds. Don’t worry, the thought of doing this is actually a lot worse than actually doing it. Just go careful and get your legs up to speed quickly. Once 20 seconds is up, jump back to the sides of the treadmill and rest for 10 seconds. Now repeat a further 11 times.
If you’re not completely messed up by the end of this and not wishing you had never uttered the words “I want a 6 pack” then you need to speed that treadmill up and set the incline a little higher I’m afraid.
Right, on to ab strengthening- with no crunches in sight.
Give this little circuit a go:
1) Single arm dumbbell shoulder press (keeping shoulders at same level throughout) 15 each side
2) Cable torso rotations (keeping hips facing forward) 15 each side
3) Hanging knees to chest 15
4) Swiss ball / TRX atomic press ups 20
5) Side plank with low cable row (don’t let your hips or torso twist) 15 each side
Go round this circuit 3 times and I promise you it will be ten times as effective as doing 1000 crunches and nothing else.
Good luck you beautiful people
Please consult with your doctor before beginning any new fitness regime. The hampshire health workout of the week is designed for individuals with a reasonable level of fitness and is not suitable for absolute beginners. Please check with a fitness professional if you are unsure of the correct technique for any of the exercises shown. Hampshire health and Jack Harrison accept no liability for any damage or injury caused from following the workout of the week, by attempting the workout you agree that you are of a level to attempt it safely. Article- I Want A Six Pack Published - 16th Nov 2012 All rights reserved