Fitness Article : The Abs-olute Truth Part II

There are always people who are out for quick fix solution , that miracle pill and that miracle drug. But honestly, the body is just like the mind, its the effort that you put into it that determines how it would end up.If you don’t read and don’t study there no real way you can get brilliant, sure, there are ways to study smarter, but studying smarter takes effort too. If you want results, you have to practice and use effective tools to practice with. This is the same with fitness.

If we can expect to achieve something something significant, we need an effective exercise and diet plan. There no two ways about it, fitness is not something you pop and fizzle in your drink and not some contraption you can use while reading the newspaper. Achieving fitness might take effort but it is worth the effort because the journey there would transform the way you think, your determination, confidence and energy levels. A six pack is just a by product of this.

What’s are six pack abs  – does everyone have it ?

A six pack is basically a thin sheet of muscle that covers your stomach. Note the word thin, so in order to have a rippling six we need to eliminate the fat covering it – a lot of it. A six pack is basically a muscle you already have becoming more visible with less body fat.

A six pack is a misnomer, meaning that not everyone has a six pack. It doesn’t mean if you have a eight pack you are awesome and if you have six pack you are cool, a four pack means you need to diet or train. No, actually genetics play a big role in the number of abdominal muscles you have. An example would be the reigning Mr Olympia, Ronnie Coleman who has a four pack but builds it with quite abit of definition. While others would have a mind boggling eight pack.

You cant control how many abs you have but you can control how much they can be seen with a low fat percentage

So how do I develop visible Abs ?

The answer is deceptively simple.

Purpose

Imagine two people working in the same job, one views a promotion as a good to have, while the other sees a promotion as a big part of the goals in his life and achieving that would open doors. It would be easy to guess who would wake up earlier and put more hours at work to get the promotion. The stronger and more compelling a purpose is, the more you can ensure that you don’t give up in your fitness goals.

Having visible abs should not be your end-all purpose. IF it is, it would be a weak motivation and wouldn’t motivate you to train that much. To motivate yourself fitness it should be a “must do” instead of a “good to have”. Focus instead n a healthier body and fitness level, and a visible set of abs is just an affirmation of that.

And then there’s the Diet

If there’s anything worth noting, its that diet is PARAMOUNT. To having visible abs. People think dieting is a dirty word, and usually think of it as fat people eating less. But its actually more about eating right than eating less. What’s the difference between a banana and a cookie, in terms of nutirtion and coloric value, alot. Learn these differences and learn how substances inside you body can generate a boost your energy levels and fat as well. Here are some basics.

Drink water (Lots of it) : Most people do not drink enough water, the recommended intake is 8 glasses about 1.5 litres. According to WebMD, a reasonable water intake can help with weight loss. We need around half a cup of water for every 100 calories we burn. Furthermore, water is a much needed catalyst for a lot of the chemical reactions in our body and is essential in flushing out waste it also fills our stomach so we get less hunger pangs. One thing you might not know is that sufficient water is needed so that you wont get retention, as the body would tend to hold on to water more tenaciously if we do not drink enough of it.

Think about what you can add to your diet: Not what you should take away. Add fruits to your diet. Green leafy vegetables and fruits possess a lot of plant chemicals (phytochemicals) that will aid in combating fat loss. Most fruits have fibre that slows down the absorption of fat, Grapefruits contains nookatone which  could help increase fat burning. Find out more.

We tend to overestimate our appetite and underestimate our potential weight gain

Think about how much you need to eat : Most people overeat, obesity is a great indicator of overeating (supposing no genetic or metabolic disorders). So eating less will definitely help. When you’re done eating, you should feel better — not stuffed, bloated, or tired. Use what the Japanese (who are seldom overweight) do, they even have a name for its as this blogger describes, its called Hara Hachi Bu ( Cool Name) but simply means eat until you are 80% full. Though I am not quite sure how you measure in terms of percentage, it means eat until you don’t feel bloated. Read more about sensible eating here, under summertomato’s post of eating mindfully.

No Night-time Snacks: We are creatures of habit and it would be important to notice your bad eating habits especially at night. Sometimes we resort to comfort eating and pull out chips or snacks while sitting in front of the TV. Its a kind of eating amnesia and bad habit that we should correct. Eating foods late at night is a sure way to get fat because your metabolism is at its lowest at night and any chance of the food being burned is very low and it most likely would go to your gut. So throw away the night snacks and take a low calorie skimmed milk drink or something light before you go to bed.

Eat what you like but in MODERATION: Putting foods off lead to a huge rebound effect after we think the diet period is over. And we end up putting on more than what we lost as we eat what we are deprived of. Start sensibly, eat your normal and leave small portions untouched, the restaurant may not like the food wastage but it does winders to your body and still gives you the ability to eat what you like. Do minor changes like less sugar in your coffee or cut out the creamer and you would be surprised how much these changes will cost you. (1.4 punds in 18 months).

Eat protein if you can help it: Protein is more “filling” than carbohydrates or fats, and thus may be your new weapon in weight control. Diets higher in protein with less carbohydrates are good. This is due to the fact that your body needs basic carbohydrates to survive, but not so much hat it makes you fat. So using protein to make you feel full, satiating you, would be a sensible diet pla. Not to mention that protein would help repair muscle damage. Bear in mind that the protein should be in moderation, and the Atkins diet is not recommended. Heres why . So be sure to include healthy protein sources, like yogurt, cheese, nuts, or beans, at meals and snacks as well as some carbohydrates.

Ice cream in bed is not the best way to get over stress and depression

Change how you cope with stress, use physical activity instead of food: I guess its a common scenario when a woman breaks up with her boyfriend and ends up eating tubs of ice cream in front of the TV. We usually deal with stress using food, and it manifests itself in sinister ways. Food provides instant gratification with a sugar rush, but post sugar rush, you would feel more depressed and sick. Studies show that sugar addiction affects the same region of the brain as drugs. Use another alternative, exercise. Exercise DEPLETES stress hormones (cortisol) and releases feel good ones (Endorphins). Slowly change the way you deal with stress and depression, run or punch a punching bag, walk and take a long hard stroll. Your body will thank you for it and it beats waking up one day fat and miserable.

More on Fitness Article: Abs-olute Truth Part III (Exercises for Abs).

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