Tag Archives: exercise

How to Get a Six Pack

‘You can never be too strong around the middle.’ This old saying has held up over the years and still rings true.

Our abdominal muscles, if strong, protect our lower backs, improve our posture by holding us more erect and provide support for our internal organs. Serious athletes often want those “washboard abs,” “a six pack” or “a rock hard gut.” This is an awesome goal for a few, but for the average person having abdominals strong enough to hold your gut in is all you need.

Begin by improving your mid-body strength by targeting this weak spot by doing a variety of exercises. The best exercises for the abdominals will focus on all of your lower middle muscles including: the lower back muscles (erector spinae), the lower side spinal muscles and the both the middle abdominals and the obliques.

The safest, simplest and best abdominal exercises are also the easiest: crunches, bent-knee sit-ups, trunk twists, back raises and side bends. While doing these exercises start with a small amount of reps and do as many sets as you can. Gradually add more sit-ups to each set. For example, do 25 crunches, rest, then do 25 more crunches and then do 25 more. Work your way up to 50 crunches in each set. Do at least three sets. Following are some additional tips you should keep in mind while doing abdominal work to make it safer and more effective. Do your abdominal exercises three times a week. Continue reading

Tae-Bo: The Ideal Full-Body Exercise

Even if you enjoy a particular workout, there are several reasons not to do the same workout the same way every day to ensure that regular exercise remains a permanent part of your lifestyle.

First of all, any exercise that uses muscles is more effective as far as building lean muscle if done every other day, to give the muscles the necessary 48-hour recovery period to rebuild. Second of all, doing any one exercise daily could lead to psychological burnout or boredom where you are not looking forward to the workout and just going through the motions. Thirdly, it may actually cause a physical plateau or stall effects as your body adjusts to the exercise and is not challenged by it anymore.

Lastly, it may even cause an injury by putting too much strain on tired muscles, ligaments or joints, especially if the mind is zoning out and not focusing on form. It is, therefore, more effective as well as more fun, to vary the daily exercise or cross train to make and keep regular exercise a permanent part of your lifestyle. My main exercise of choice is Tae-Bo, which is in itself an overall body workout, both aerobic (cardiovascular) and anaerobic (muscle building). Continue reading