One thing that most people who train for improved abs do not realize is that they need to train their backs at the same time. Without having a proper balance between abdominal and low back strength, there is a change in posture, ultimately resulting in a decreased physique, decreased oxygenation to muscles, and decreased endurance. This means that you will spend more time in the gym, take less away from your workout, and feel more tired the next day. Sounds terrible, right?
One of the greatest secrets that I teach my clients is to strengthen their low back musculature in order to increase the efficacy of their abdominal workouts. Through proper low back strengthening, they are able to normalize their pelvic positions, thereby increasing the stretch on their skin in the abdomen. This increase in stretch, or better posed decrease in slack, results in showing the muscles that lie underneath. With the 3 step plan you see below, you may just find that you have had more abdominal definition than you knew:
Step 1: Learn how to perform stability exercises rather than crunches. Functionally, our abs work to stabilize our bodies while walking, standing from a chair, or sitting down. This is referred to as an ‘isometric’ contraction, meaning that the muscle is contracting, but no movement is taking place. Whenever your abs are working isometrically, it’s a good bet that your low back is helping stabilize from the other side. Think about it, if my abs are firing and my low back extensors are not, would I not bend forward?
Step 2: Spend double the time on your back than you do on your front. Take for granted the fact that most people work on the muscles they can see in the mirror when working out. If you simply try to counterbalance this for awhile, you will be blown away by the results. By working on muscles such as your lower trapezius, middle trapezius, rhomboids, posterior deltoids, gluteals, and multifidi, you will stand far ahead of your competition. Your body will assume a better posture, your circulation will improve, the oxygen delivery to your muscles will improve, and your metabolism will increase. All of these factors will drive your results through the roof when attempting to improve abdominal definition and strength.
Step 3: Change it up. Most people perform the same exercises every other time that they work out. Instead, try to vary joint angles and positions, muscles targeted, surfaces used, or anything else you can think of in order to ‘shock your system’ into thinking it’s never exercises before. Do you remember the first time you worked out? You were pretty sore, right? Me too. There is a reason for this: our bodies were producing a ton of lactic acid, which produced soreness, and resulted in a repair process that uses energy to get rid of the acid. This energy equals increased metabolism. If you increase metabolism, you’ll hit your goals before you know it!
If you’d like to see amazing results with your ab strengthening program in the gym, all you have to do is follow this three step plan. By targeting your muscles the way they are intended to be used, improving posture, and mixing things up, you will be blown away by the results.
If you’d like a free trial of an incredibly effective ab strengthening program that only takes 10 minutes per day, please go to: Ab Strength Guide
Have a great day,
Today, I want to share an article I wrote on how to lose belly fat through exercise and without extreme dieting. A lot of people have commented to me that it’s helped them straighten some stuff out in their heads… hope it helps you too!
have a great day,
How To Lose Stubborn Belly Fat
Kareem Samhouri, DPT
Losing stubborn belly fat can be challenging if you are not living with the correct lifestyle modifications. Stress management techniques, regular exercise, and a decent diet are necessary strategies to ever achieve the exercise results and toned abs that you are seeking. Many people realize the importance of exercise, but very few understand the implication of stress on belly fat.
Stress increases production of a hormone called ‘cortisol,’ which results in a deposit of belly fat. This is a primitive reaction of the body as, historically, we used this belly fat deposit for food during long winter months of food deprivation. You see, cold weather and lack of food are two stress-producing stimuli that result in the exact same reaction. For this reason, it is vital that we understand starvation diets and extreme dietary modification works to increase deposits of fat in hard to reach areas. It’s a defense mechanism to ensure we don’t starve.
By regulating the amount of cortisol released in our bodies through stress management techniques we can alter body composition to our advantage. The next time you feel stressed by the thought of work, exercise, home, or what have you, I encourage you to practice deep breathing. The suggestion is to breathe in by sniffing, thereby inducing a diaphragmatic breath, and breathe out slowly while exhaling as if you were blowing through a straw. Pursing your lips, or exhaling like blowing through a straw, results in increased removal of carbon dioxide, as well as increased absorption of oxygen. Naturally, oxygen has an inhibitory affect on our nervous system, allowing us to relax and manage our stress level inappropriately.
Through regular practice of stress management to decrease cortisol levels, combined with a proper exercise and nutrition plan, you can legitimately skyrocket your results in the gym. Unfortunately, most people spend too much time worrying about their body weight, rather than reinforcing their habits by mental exercise as well.
If you’d like a risk-free opportunity to try an ab strengthening program that guarantees you results or you don’t pay, please visit: Ab Strength Guide – Have a great day!