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NIFS Healthy Living Blog

Thomas' Corner: Do Crunches Guarantee “Six-Pack Abs”?

If you could name one body part that you’d like to improve, most people would agree its their abdominals area. 460455295The ideal, desired image of six-pack abs plastered on the cover of every magazine tells us so…right? To get where you want to be, you will have to have a game plan. Ten thousand crunches per day should do the trick, right? Well not necessarily.  

While crunches do strengthen core muscles (including abdominals and hip flexors), they do not give you a 100 percent guarantee of having six-pack abs. You need to treat abdominal muscles like other muscles, they will naturally get stronger (along with the rest of your body).

You may say, “Thomas, I was born without abdominals, HELP!” Rest assured, you have abdominal muscles; they are most likely there or else you would not be able to get out of bed, walk down the hallway, or anything else, for that matter. To get the abs to show, you need to burn more calories than you consume through exercise and nutrition. This can be done in various combinations, but the best results come when you are doing sensible workouts and eating sensible meals day in and day out consistently. In doing this, you will see overall body fat loss, resulting in your muscle definition being more transparent.

Challenge your core in new ways. Increase intensity rather than reps (20 reps per set is normal), and try new exercises and tools to keep your workout fresh. Remember, to see the results you want to see, focus on nutrition every day and have a well-rounded game plan in the gym. Contact a registered dietitian at NIFS to get more information on proper nutrition and a fitness specialist to prescribe new, challenging core exercises.

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Evolve and rejoice,

This blog was written by Thomas Livengood, Health Fitness Specialist at NIFS. To find out more about the NIFS bloggers click here.

Topics: NIFS nutrition fitness center Thomas' Corner core