Getting your abs summer ready requires doing more than just a few sit-ups everyday. It involves a 3 part approach – diet, exercise, and cardio – that should be followed for at least 10-12 weeks to get the maximum results (that means start now!)
Diet: Eat clean. Cut the carbs; switch them out for fibrous carbs (such as broccoli, spinach, asparagus, green beans, etc…) Keep your protein lean, opting for grilled chicken, grilled fish, lean steak, ground buffalo, and whey protein. Eat 5-6 small meals / day.
Oh…and don’t forget to cut back on the alcohol!
Cardio: Do 30-60mins, 4-5 times / week. If you choose to do 60mins, break it up into 2 sessions of 30mins each. This will keep your metabolism running hot. If you’re like the rest of us busy folks, and feel like you just don't have all that time to go twice, do your first session early in the morning (or before work) and then once more after work. Make the sacrifice.
Oh…don’t just stroll along on the treadmill. Cardio should be work! Go for intervals or sprints. Work it hard!
Exercise: Train your abdominal muscles 3 times / week with the focus on your lower abs, upper abs, and obliques. For obliques - avoid side bend exercises with heavy weights (my pet peeve); they are highly dangerous and ineffective! Instead, choose to do side planks and various rotation exercises with cables. For lower abs (everybody’s problem area) – reverse crunches & hanging knee raises ... all done with the emphasis of bringing your pelvis closer to your rib cage (don’t just pump your legs up and down, but focus on tilting your pelvis). For upper abs – crunches & situps will torch the upper portion of your abdominal wall.
Here’s a great routine that can be done 3 times / week to chisel, define, and get your abs summer perfect –
⚫Hanging knee raises (using ab slings)
⚫Crunches on physio ball
⚫Reverse crunches on the floor
⚫Rotating side planks (side plank position, upper arm bent, and bringing that elbow towards the floor)
⚫Ab rollouts using physio ball
Do these exercises as a circuit 4-6 times, 20-30 reps / set. Keep your rest periods down to 30-45 seconds between sets. Enjoy the burn, enjoy the results.