Every time we look at different fitness commercials and see those amazing chiseled abs that look just perfect, we wish we had 6-pack abs too. Unfortunately, to have them, we usually think we need to spend hundreds of dollars on certain gym equipment that actually sell us nothing but fake promises. Long ago, I had a flabby belly that I was very insecure about and seeing those commercials used to make me feel guilty.
I began questioning myself, how could I take hold of the sad condition of my physique? I wanted to get rid of that extra fat as soon as possible. I talked to a fitness expert who suggested me a diet based on my physical features. He also asked me to do a few workouts using ab machines to get those killer abs I was yearning for. With hard work and perseverance, now I have abs that everyone envies! Here I will share my experience on how I got rid of my flabby abs, hence I present to you my success story of getting ripped 6-pack abs.
Warm-Up Exercises You Should Try Before The Real Deal
Before using an ab exercises machine for a regular fitness regime it’s always best to warm up your abs. The best way is doing some simple but effective exercises which don’t need any special equipment. Actually, these warm-up exercises only need your dedication and undivided focus.
- Planks: This exercise will activate your midsection and is a good way to gear up your abs. If you have back pain, it could be alleviated with regular planks since most of the pressure is in the front part. These warm-up exercises emphasize on activating and building the strength of core muscles, found in the ‘six pack’ region.
- Side planks: They are another version of planks but sideways where the pressure shifts to the external obliques and internal core muscles. As a bonus, your arms and thighs get worked up a bit too. The obliques become tighter, giving your waist a streamlined shape.
- Upright bird dog: This might sound crazy, but it is a great warm-up technique that focuses on resisting rotation. You have to get down on the floor and raise your arm up against a flat surface e.g. a bench. When you lift your arm up you also have to raise your opposite leg straight. This should be repeated with the other hand and leg as well. Just see how your core muscles become activated.
Once you have warmed up your abs, you can begin your workout session on an ab exercises machine. There are many types of ab exercise machines and you should use the one that gives you great results. Do not rush into doing difficult exercises and pushing yourself too hard. Stay within your limits and set small targets every day. If you are doing 20 reps now, you can aim to do 25 reps next week. Make small progressive goals like this and you’ll get toned abs with an amazing physique!
Using an Ab Roller
This simple yet effective gym equipment turned out to be my personal favorite for ab workouts. It’s also known as an ab wheel. Remember, the ab roller could be dangerous for people with lower back pain or hernias. You should always consult your fitness trainer on what to use to get an amazing midsection.
I also noticed that many people don’t know how to use ab rollers the right way. They try to finish their workout sessions quickly and thus often end up injuring themselves by stretching too far. Here is how you should use an ab roller:
- Hold your ab roller and get down on the floor on your knees.
- Place the ab roller in front of you with your legs in front of you straightened. The ab roller should be in between your legs.
- Now roll the ab roller forward slowly. Go as far as your body will allow you to, without your front portion touching the floor. Breathe in while doing this step.
- Stay in this position for a while and then roll back up slowly. Breathe out while doing this
- Repeat the process and see how burned your core muscles feel. If you want to move to a bit more advanced version, try rolling diagonally instead of going straight. This will help your obliques to strengthen.
- Focus on the motion while you’re at it. Increase sets and reps as days pass by. Use it 3 to 4 times a week to get good results.
The ab roller is quite easy to use, but it still might be a bit too much for the beginners. After a little practice, you’ll start loving using one. It’s also quite affordable and many people buy ab rollers for home use.
Other Ab Exercise Machines You’ll Absolutely Love
Ab roller is the most convenient and simple workout equipment ever. Other types of ab machines used to strengthen abs are just as good, but they are far more specific and do not work on the whole body like the ab roller. You should use these only after you’ve done those warms up sessions I mentioned before. If you are not comfortable with an ab roller or you have lower back pain then you can try the following equipment as alternatives.
- Adjustable sit up benches: Ab benches are one of the oldest gym equipment used to train abs. Their adjustability gives you the freedom to pick the resistance level you want for yourself. A variety of exercises could be done, such as crunches, sit-ups, leg raises and twists. You can avoid injuries by picking a bench long and wide enough, suitable to your body size.
- Pull up bars: These are for people who love bodyweight training. Try doing the hanging knee raises and leg raises so that your obliques and abdominiques get stressed the right way. Pull up bars come in various forms, such as power tower or mounted ones. With power tower bars you can do a whole range of bodyweight exercises, so they are better in terms of hitting your whole upper body.
- Roman Chairs: You’ll need Roman chairs to achieve a killer slim waist. These machines are great for the lower back, making them perfect for people with lower back problems. Beginners usually focus on their abs but remember you should also keep your focus on your lower back. If you don’t do that you could end up with posture issues and hurting yourself. The most common move done using Roman chairs is the hyperextension. All you have to do is hold your feet down on the chair and hold up your torso and arms as much as you can.
Ab exercises are fun and enjoyable, but should be done carefully. Do not overdo anything, just progress towards your fitness goal slowly by increasing sets and repetitions. Take your time while using your gym equipment, even if you are not a beginner. You should take at least one day of proper rest every week so that your body gets enough time to recover. Do cardio exercises, keep yourself hydrated, get proper sleep and maintain a balanced diet. Getting chiseled abs might be hard but with determination and perseverance, you can get swoon worthy abs. Remember, you are your own boss here!