Want Shredded Abs? Do This.
Before bodybuilding I used to think that to get six-pack abs you needed to do a thousand sit ups a day, or run a marathon, or some crazy amount of exercise.
I was wrong.
That’s because I was working under the premise that for a shredded stomach all you had to do was exercise. I mean, yeah, skip the junk food too, but it was a 50-50 split between diet and exercise, right?
Here’s what I learned as a 40-something bikini competition winner: It’s 90% food, 10% exercise. I call it my 90/10 Rule.
Here’s why: You can do crunches until the cows come home but if you have a snuggly layer of fat over your abs no one will see how strong you are!
Don’t get me wrong; core work (planks, sit-ups, crunches, etc.) does come into play (there’s that 10% part of the 90/10 Rule) but mostly it’s for strengthening and sculpting your muscles. You need to eat clean to see the muscles first.
What does it mean to “eat clean”?
- Eat whole foods
- Combine protein (eggs, fish, poultry, Greek yogurt) with carbohydrates (brown rice, sweet potato, old fashioned oatmeal, quinoa), vegetables and healthy fats (avocado, almonds, chia seeds, olive oil) into your meals
- Drink 8 glasses of water per day
- No processed foods (generally speaking if it’s in a box or has a label it’s processed, even foods in the “diet” and “healthy living” sections.)
- No added sugar (you can get fructose in small doses from fruit at breakfast time)
- Skip drinks like soda, alcohol, juice and things at Starbucks that take 15 minutes to order. Like a caramel macchiato with whole milk, extra whipped cream, extra caramel please. (There was a reason why I was 50 lbs. overweight…)
Processed foods contain lots of ingredients that taste great but are terrible for your waistline! Typically food sold in the middle aisles of the grocery store lure you in with advertising specifically designed to confuse you into thinking the product is healthier than it is. That product is full of sugar, salt and/or fat and those ingredients can get you craving that product even more.
Stick to the perimeter of the store where the produce and poultry hang out. Not sure if something is processed or not? A good rule of thumb I heard was, “If you’re grandmother wouldn’t recognize it as food, it’s probably not.” (Think: Cheetos. Delicious? Yes. But really, what the hell is a Cheeto anyway? Ever read the ingredients on the label? If you need a chemists degree to read the label, that should give you pause.)
If you make just those simple changes your body will thank you.
If you’re serious about getting healthy, but need help getting started, try my S.L.I. Method on my website ShesLosingIt.com. Only YOU can do the work, but I can give you the tools that I’ve learned over the past five years about nutrition, exercise and overcoming excuses.
- Meal Plan
- Detailed videos and downloads explaining how to make clean eating a lifestyle
- 24 no-gym-required complete workouts
- Access to a fitness library demonstrating proper form
- Lots of motivational videos, tips & tricks
- Access to a closed Facebook group where you can ask me questions
Lisa Traugott is a Mom’s Choice Award winning writer, fitness blogger, wife and mom of two….and Original Cast Member of AMERICAN GRIT, starring John Cena, on FOX!!!
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