I woke up that morning in a holy rage, feeling that God had personally come down and asked me to begin the journey of discovering how to develop such abs, and then pass the knowledge down to the rest of humanity. And so my holy crusade against fat began. I set out into the empty desert (a.k.a. the UCI Science Library and Cognitive Science Research Lab) and began seeking answers. After months of research, I returned weathered, beaten, and tired, but with me I had a set of holy commandments: Rules to unlocking unbelievable abs that make children cry and women wet.
The results I was able to achieve are can be seen in the video and pictures here:
Here, I provide a general outline of what a typical week would look like. However, it’s generally advised to change it up once every three weeks.
Nutrition advice is tough to give, especially when you don’t know who you’re speaking to. Follow the link below for a sample of a nutrition program *I* follow on a cutting diet.
1. Train lower abs:
You have to train your lower abs a lot more than you train your upper abs, as lower abs are naturally much less developed by comparison. To offset this natural shortcoming, all you have to do is train your lower abs in a 3:1 ratio. Do three lower ab exercises for every one upper ab exercise.
2. Use weights:
To get those deep valleys in your abs and deep separation between the individual muscles groups, you have to use weights. Relying on your body weight just isn’t enough and will not produce satisfactory results, unless you’re a genetic super freak. The biggest mistake I see people making is only using their body weight while doing abs exercises. This forces the person to do 60-70 reps just to feel a burn and see mediocre results at best. If you just add weights, not only will you develop better looking abs that are stronger, but you will also have to do fewer reps, allowing you to finish your workout faster.
Without a low body fat percentage, you’re never going to have sharp looking abs, no matter how many ab exercises you do. Luckily, it’s very easy to drop your body fat percentage into the 9%, 7%, or even 5% range. All you have to do is reduce your insulin spikes by not eating sugar or any complex carbs, and keep glycogen levels low by doing intense, fast-paced, weight lifting sessions. Three workouts a week is more than enough, but four to five really intense workouts will produce the best results. Repeat the cycle until you drop to your desired body fat percentage.
Getting a really uncomfortable and almost painful burning feeling in your abs while you’re training them is the only real way to develop highly-defined abs. Without pushing yourself into those extreme, painful ranges, your abs will never be as developed as you want them.
Breathing is probably one of the most important variables that people overlook when training their abs. You cannot get a full contraction, and feel that deep burn, without exhaling all the air out of your body at the peak contraction point.
Since there are so many different parts in the midsection area, it’s important to have a large arsenal of different exercises to bring out the most definition possible. I would recommend having 10-15 different ab exercises and mastering every single one of them. Remember to train your obliques, upper abs, lower abs, core stabilizers, and lower back through linear and rotations movements.
Most muscle breakdown occurs on the eccentric, or negative, portion of the movement. You have to take advantage of this and always learn to subjectively contract the muscle you’re targeting on the eccentric portion of the movement. One of the worst things you could do, that will really hinder your performance, is flop back down on half of a rep. For instance, in a sit up, there is the up motion and down motion. There is always resistance going up, but if you just flop back down, there is no resistance, and thus you’re only doing half a rep. Take full advantage of the rep and go slowly on the way up and slowly on the way down.
Just by fixing your posture, you can easily take one or two inches off your midsection without losing a single percentage of body fat. Plus, with better posture you look taller which makes your abs look longer and leaner.
9. Work your stabilizer muscles:
There are two types of muscles in your midsection: movers and stabilizers. Stabilizers help keep your midsection tucked in, so it’s important to work them in order to keep your midsection lean.
There is some research that indicates that isolating abs is pointless and one should concentrate on just doing compound movements for ab development: deadlifts, snatches, etc. My response to that could best be summarized by the picture to the left. (A) The people that rely on compound movements for ab development have shitty looking abs or no abs at that. (B) People that follow this advice and research typically fail to look below the surface of the studies which don’t test isolation of ab movements correctly and thus fail to produce accurate results and findings. (C) When you take mind muscle connection and proper breathing into the formula, you’ll notice there is actually more muscle fiber activation in the abs than in compound movements. Result: isolation exercises for the abs are more effective at building aesthetically appealing abs than compound movements. < that’s a period right there, if you didn’t notice.
Clients i have used these principals on