Need Advice on Abs....

  • Hi,

    I'm on my 2nd round with BFL, and I'm needing some advice on getting my abs flat.  It appears that my body has changed quite a bit since the last time I did BFL, because my abs were just OK so I didn't have to focus on them much.  Now, however, I look like I could be pregnant.  It's pretty pathetic on a guy with a 32" waist.  Anyway, I'm just looking for what some of you folks have done (specific exercise, reps and weight used) to get your abs back in shape. 

    Also, how long did it take to see a change for you?

    Thanks in advance!

    Dan

  • 80% of the progress that you make with abs is in the kitchen. The largest percentage of the folks that I ask how they got such great abs say that they truly never figured out how to fry them out. Check out Scott-Houston...he is doing fabulously! My 10 week photos are posted. I was able to feel soreness in my abs after a workout twice in the entire 12 week period. Focus on a SUPER clean, whole foods diet. I take CLA and had great results in challenge 1. However, I don't know if the CLA is wholly responsible for that. I am taking it again in challenge 2.

    BFL will give back what you put into it. I am hoping someone else can post some killer ab exercises. I would love to learn some new ones. Have you ever tried a plank? It's an ugly burn :-)

    Keep the faith!

    Faithful Renee :0)

  • Renee, the plank SUCKS...because it works!  LOL!  I hate it, but it does work quite well.  "Ugly burn" is right.

    Dan, Renee is right about abs: it's at least 80% diet.  I read an interview with WWE wrestler John Cena, who's got an admirable six-pack.  He says he rarely does ab work, but he eats clean and keeps his metabolism stoked.  Granted, he's probably blessed with genetics, but the point is that diet is largely important to seeing your abs.

  • I am thinking I need balance in my abs. I havent been working my obliques much for fear of losing that waist curve, but I am not liking how I sortof look hollow right under my ribs and the abs show only in the middle. I am wondering if oblique work would give me that more solid front. Thoughts?

  • Thanks All !

    John - What's the plank?

    Renee - What's CLA?  I'm trying to eat better, but I travel locally every day.  I spend a lot of time at McDonalds (wait, wait, don't panic!) but I always get a grilled chicken salad and unsweetened tea.   My protien between meals comes from CLIF's builder bars.

    Has anyone experimented doing extra ab workouts in addition to doing them with the lower body workout?  What about your results from decline bench-vs-floor crunches?

    Thanks!

  • Boilermaker:

    This post is from the BFL Frequently asked Questions tab:

    CLA stands for `Conjugated Linoleic Acid.’ This is a modified form of the essential omega-6 fatty acid, linoleic acid. Linoleic acid is another of the fatty acid compounds known as essential due to the fact that your body cannot synthesize them; they must be obtained through your diet and/or supplementation. CLA has been shown to have a host of beneficial effects when at least 3 g/day are taken in.

    CLA has been shown in studies to be an anti-carcinogen, to reduce catabolism (muscle breakdown), to enhance growth, and to improve blood lipid profiles. More recent clinical research has also shown CLA as a positive factor in supporting metabolism and body composition. Essentially, when taken in at the levels recorded above, CLA may aid an individual in supporting lean muscle mass, reducing fat storage, releasing and burning more fat from stores in the body.  As such, if you are serious about adding lean mass and/or losing body fat, CLA would be an excellent addition to your daily regimen.

    The plank is a core/body excercise where you are in parallel position to the floor on tiptoes and elbows. Hold abs tight and if you have pain in lower back, stop right away. You can also do a side plank. if you google "plank" you will see examples.

    Personally I do my ab work after my cardio and no more. It is a muscle that needs to be worked and let to repair like any other.

    Cathie on T.com

  • Boilermaker,

    I currently am doing extra ab workout during my upper body workouts.  I know the book does not suggests that but as you progress through the challenge you learn to tweak how you do the exercises and whatnot. I agree that abs also have a lot to do with what you eat as with all the other muscles in your body so make sure youre eating right.

    currently I am doing oblique work like legs I grab a weight plate or dumbbell, sit on the ground and keep your legs a few inches off the ground while moving the weight side to side.  I like the floor or Swiss ball crunches much better than the decline for 2 reasons.  1. i just dont like doing the decline bench crunches and 2. because you have to be extra careful that your not working out your tensor fascia lata.  This is a hip flexor muscles that is normally pretty loose but if its tight can create some problems for you.  If lift your body up too high on the decline bench, your TFL will start to take over as the prime mover so if you do this exercise only lift off the bench max 6 inches.  I personally just stick to flat bench and floor exercises. Also mix up the ab workouts every 4-6 weeks just like any other muscle.

  • Dan,

    I am wondering the same thing... i hate my abs, I am a size 2 but I have this jiggly flabby thing that i can't get rid of. But my husband was cautioning me not to work my abs too much as not to build muscle there (like every other muscle) so it won't stick out too much. but I can't help it i have this urge to constantly work my abs.

    My diet is extremely clean... maybe more cardio? i don't know what to do???

  • Abs are the last thing to really come through at least they were for me.  It wasn't until my final week that I noticed signifcant changes.  I follow the program to a tee right from the book and work out my abs on my leg days as follows:

    Decline crunches(on a bench) - I hold weight on my chest incrementally(in lbs) from 25, 35, 45, 55, back to 35 and then for the level 10 I use an ab-rocker performing crunches while simulataneously doing leg raises.  It hurts , a lot, no pain no gain though.  

  • Boiler - Just like Legs said abs are a muscle like any other and should be worked out like any other.  I am on my third challenge. Challenge 1 I did by the book. You can see pics on my profile and I was not happy with my abs. You could start to see them but not like when I was 20 and had a six pack. On challenge 2 I tried doing abs 3-4 times a week and noticed no significant difference in the ab department just alot of extra fatigue and back pain. On challenge 3 back to doing abs with lower body. I have found the use of weights helps give me more strength. If I do abs without weights -planks, leg lifts, abs machines at the gym, etc... I go to fatigue which could 20, maybe 30 reps rather that going to 12-10-8-6-12 which you would do with incramenting weights. I still do 5 sets of on exercise and 1 set of a different exercise.

    Usually the problem is not your ab muscles it is the layer of fat on top of them. I agree the diet is a huge part to reduce that fat layer so you can see your abs but so is Cardio. If you are worried you cant see your abs hit the Cardio harder. Diet and Cardio will do more to show your abs than extra training will. This is all my opinion of course :-)

    Rock on my friend and keep going. Glad to hear you didnt stop at the end of Challenge #1.

  • I like doing cable crunches and leg lifts- any pilates moves too.  Oxygen just released their Abs magazine and it's loaded with good info!

    Andra

    ~Let every opposition strengthen you, not stop you~

  • I had a very good ab workout this morning. My whole core burned and is still feeling hot a half hour later. I havent felt that in weeks. I used my tube and wrapped it around my chin-up bar and did floor excercises that I revisited from this site. Hope it helps somebody get to their 10's too.

    www.bodybuilding.com/exercises

  • I feel that I get a great ab workout from decline sit-ups. I can start to see results in my mid-section from that and floor leg lifts. (I am on week 5 day 2) Hope that helps.

  • Just starting my 3rd week.  Waht are the Challanges 1, 2 and 3?

  • OBX - A challenge consists of 12 weeks. Some of us have done more than one challenge. That's all.

    I am in my third challenge.  Just doing the same thing for the third time - CAUSE ITS FUN!