When putting together your ab workouts, you’ll often find that there are literally hundreds of different abdominal exercises for you to choose from. For example…
- Leg raises.
- Hanging leg raises.
- Hip thrusts.
- Side bends.
- Ab twists.
- Ab roll-outs.
- Hundreds of different ab machines, ab exercises and workouts on video, and abdominal exercise machines sold via late night infomercials.
This list could go on and on. BUT, before it does… let me ask you a question. Why did you come here to find out about abdominal exercises?
Think about it for a second. Why do you want to know what the best ab exercises are? Is it because you want to have a perfect six pack? Because you want to get rid of your belly fat? Because you want to have a flat stomach with sexy washboard abs? Well, if so, then there’s something you need to hear…
Abdominal Exercises Do NOT Burn Belly Fat
The truth is, every one of those abdominal exercises that I just mentioned, plus every one of the supposed BEST ab exercises that I didn’t mention, will NOT help you get a perfect six pack. EVERY one of these abdominal exercises will only help to strengthen and build your ab muscles. BUT, that won’t do a damn thing for you if you have a layer of fat covering them.
You see, no abdominal exercises burn belly fat. Not even a little bit. None of the ones you see in infomercials, none of those fancy machines you see in your gym, no special ab workouts you saw in some magazine or on some website. All abdominal exercises are equally useless for burning the fat on your stomach.
Instead, what they will all do is just help make your ab muscles bigger and stronger. You can make your abs as strong as you want, and build them as big as you want, but as long as you still have even the slightest amount of fat on your stomach covering them, your abs will not be visible.
They will just remain hidden under that fat.
How To Actually Get Rid Of Belly Fat
You see, nothing, I repeat, NOTHING will burn the fat off of your stomach to let your abs become visible except for the one thing that causes fat to be lost from ANY part of your body… a caloric deficit.
This is when you consume less calories than you burn which puts your body in an energy deficit. In this situation, your body has no other choice but to burn your own stored body fat for energy instead.
And honestly… that’s it. That’s what causes weight loss, and that’s the ONE and ONLY way to lose fat from any part of your body. At some point, that fat will come off from the part you want it to the most (in this case your stomach). When that happens, your abs will finally be visible. Until that point, no amount of ab workouts will make any difference.
Unfortunately, most people (maybe even you) waste enormous amounts of time and effort worrying about what the best abdominal exercises are and wasting money on the dumbest “As Seen On TV” ab machines that are nothing but lies and marketing bullshit used to make you believe spot reduction actually exists. It doesn’t.
Sorry, But Spot Reduction Isn’t Possible
As I’ve explained in other articles, spot reduction is the idea that doing an exercise which targets a specific body part will in some way target the fat covering that body part. Nope, sorry… it just can’t happen. It’s a myth. Exercises target muscles, not fat.
Which means, the REAL key to getting perfect abs isn’t actually training your abs. It’s having a low enough body fat percentage so your abs can actually be seen. To do that, you need to lose fat, and the only way that’s going to happen is with a proper fat loss diet (more about that here: How To Lose Weight).
There’s a common saying in the fitness world among people who understand how useless ab workouts truly are for the purpose of actually having visible abs: Abs are made in the kitchen, not the gym.
And honestly, that’s as true as can be.
But My Body Fat Percentage Already Is Low?!?!
This is the point when a handful of people like to argue that their body fat is already pretty low, yet they still can’t see their abs. Well, in only the rarest of cases, it’s possible that your ab muscles are just not built up enough to be seen in which case abdominal exercises and workouts may indeed help.
But, in 99.9% of cases when someone has a low body fat percentage and still can’t see their abs, the explanation is quite simple. Your body fat might be low… but it’s just not low enough.
In which case, you just need to lose some more fat. There are millions of seemingly “skinny” people out there whose perfect abs are still covered by the thinnest layer of belly fat. In fact, it’s often the last place fat comes off from. So, even if you look skinny and the rest of your body is quite lean… you could most definitely still have a tiny amount of belly fat to lose in order to see your abs.
But The Guy/Girl Using The Ab Machines Has Awesome Abs?!?!?
And this is usually the point when people like to bring up the fact that the guys and girls using the hilariously stupid ab machines advertised everywhere happen to have amazing bodies and perfect abs without any belly fat covering them. If what I’m saying is true, how did these people get to look so good?
Uh… simple. They lost belly fat (and fat in general) by using a proper weight loss diet and workout routine. That’s how they got that body you see… not by using the useless piece of crap ab machine they were hired as models to come and pretend to use in their advertisement.
But What About Abdominal Exercises & Workouts?
Now that you know that perfect abs come as a result of your diet and not your workout, you may be wondering if you should even bothering training your abs at all.
Well, as long as your overall workout routine is set up properly, then all that’s honestly needed is a few minutes of some basic ab exercises once or twice per week. That’s it. Weighted crunches, hanging leg raises, planks, ab roll-outs… whatever.
Pick your favorites and do 10-15 minutes worth twice per week.
You’ll save a ton of time by no longer doing hundreds of useless crunches and other nonsense or searching for the supposed BEST abdominal exercises and workouts. Instead, you’ll have extra time to spend on your diet, which is the real key to losing belly fat and actually have perfect abs.
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