If your goal is to look like someone on the cover of a magazine or simply (and more realistically) to get in to better shape and improve your health then you can benefit from knowing fact from fiction. I get asked this question on a regular basis hence I feel it’s my responsibility to set the record straight. The question quite simply is, “Paul, if I perform large number of crunches / sit ups per day will I get six pack abs?”
In reality, everyone stores body fat differently but the mid-section is universal to everyone. If you have excess body fat a good portion will be storied in your mid section regardless of whether you’re male or female. Science has shown that excess belly fat increases the probability of the following:
High blood pressure
Some types of cancer
Type 2 diabetes
Low levels of high-density lipoprotein (HDL), or “good,” cholesterol
If your intention is to reduce the size of your mid-section performing large numbers of abdominal exercises will NOT make this happen. Performing large amounts of abdominal exercises will strengthen your abdominals but it will do little to eliminate excess fat stored around your mid section. To get a lean midsection you will need to decrease your body fat level which will mean cutting your calories in most cases as well as cleaning up your diet. Your diet will be the greatest single contributor to your fat loss efforts. Key points for your diet will be to stick with lean proteins, natural starchy and fibrous carbohydrates as well as healthy fats. In addition to a good diet you will need to be performing weight training as well as cardio exercises on a regular basis. My recommendation is to perform these sessions 5 to 6 times per week on a regular basis. Simply put, the short cut to reducing the size of your waist is with a clean diet and exercising 5 to 6 days a week. Fat loss is a process that takes time however it is well worth the effort and its impact to your physique, and your overall health.