You have been crunching your way to a smaller waist for all the wrong reasons. From Bosu ball exercises to the abdominal shock treatment, we have done our very best to utilise core work for that ultimate 6-pack-ab look. Unfortunately, those sit ups and leg lifts aren’t what directly shrink your muffin top. But, before you ditch your ab routine, read the actual reasons why core work is so vital when wanting to shed those inches.
- Gaining is a good thing: When it comes to lean muscle mass, having more is better. We aren’t talking about the Mr Olympian type of muscle, so ladies, don’t worry. Being able to add lean muscle, especially in our core, will help rev your metabolism and shed fat. The more lean muscle we carry the more calories our bodies burn on a daily basis.
- Muscle takes up less room: Speaking again about lean muscle mass; muscle is more dense than fat, meaning that one pound of muscle takes up less space than one pound of fat. As we shed fat and add lean muscle to our midsection, the scale might not move much, but our waist will shrink and increase the amount of calories burned.
- Do nothing and burn calories: It is our dream to be able to do less and remain fit. When you incorporate a solid abdominal routine and gain lean muscle, you can do just that. One pound of fat is equal to 3500 calories, whereas one pound of muscle is equal to 2500 calories. It takes much more energy and work to burn a pound of fat versus a pound of muscle. The more lean mass you have, the more efficient your metabolism will be and the less work you will have to do.
- Abdominal exercises attack the fat: Our bodies store fat in different layers; subcutaneous (under the skin) and visceral (deep or around the organs). That little extra love you have around your belly is a mixture of both. To get that 6 pack to pop you will need to balance your core work with proper cardio and nutrition. With that said, the abdominal exercises you perform right now will help target the subcutaneous layer, giving you a more tight feeling post workout.
Dust those ankle weights off and roll out your mat, you have some core work to do. Check out our additional articles for more workout ideas and don’t miss our 30 Day Challenge.
Please Note: Before following exercise routines or changing your fitness regime, please consult a certified fitness professional. Always talk with a medical practitioner before following dietary advice or taking supplements.