Yes, yes, and yes! It does not matter if you are overweight or obese. If you want to have six-pack abs, you can have it! You will have it! And you can do it!
A lot of people who have been there and done that can attest to the fact that it is not impossible to lose weight and achieve great looking abs. But it is not a walk in the park. You need to have a strict diet regimen and of course, you have to work out to lose the excess weight, burn the unwanted body fat and start on your way to having great abdominal muscles.
How long will it take for me to get those abs?
I interviewed a fitness expert in our gym and he told me that it depends upon a number of factors. If the person has the willpower to lose weight and tone his body to get the 6-pack abs, it can be anywhere from 6 to 24 months. There is no quick solution and there is no “one program fits all”.
First things first…
Are you sure that you are obese? You can be overweight and need a little bit of help losing the fat deposits in your body. To be certain, check the BMI calculator to compute if you are indeed obese.
Result = weight in kilos /height in meters x height in meters
If you get 18.4, this means that you are underweight. You need to gain a few more pounds to be in the healthy range. Being underweight is the same as being overweight when health is concerned. Both are prone to illnesses and that is not good.
18.5 to 24.9 is normal. 25 to 29.99 is a little bit overweight. You need to exercise to get back to your normal healthy range and choose healthy meals more often. 30 and up means that you are obese and this health condition poses a lot of risks to you. You are a candidate to contract Type II Diabetes, cardiovascular diseases and sleep apnea.
So, ok. I know now I am obese, what do you i do?
If you are overweight or obese, you need to lose excess body fat first before you can gear towards toning your body to get the 6-pack abs. Body fat is different from body weight in pounds. It can be that you are losing weight but you are also losing water and body muscle. What we are after here is losing the fat. From the BMI calculator, you cannot get the body fat ratio. You can go to a professional trainer who can help you with a body composition test. There are machines which compute that for a fee.
Set a realistic goal.
The trainer will tell you how much body fat you are in excess of. So for example, you are 44% over your body fat content. With proper diet and exercise, you can lose .3 to .5% (This is less than 1%, just a reminder) For some who do it religiously, they can lose up to 1% per week. But that involves strenuous working out and a very strict diet plan. For beginners, this is not realistic. Aim for at losing at least .5% per week. You can do it. You know that you can.
Now, if you are 44% in excess (obese level), when will you lose all those unwanted fats so that you can start on building your six-pack abs dream?
This is how you are going to do it.
For men there is a minimum requirement of 7% to 8% body fat so that he can successfully start his 6-pack diet and exercise routine. For women, the body fat requirement is 11 to 12 percent. (Oh yes, you need body fat too in order to be healthy.)
So, if you are a man, that will be 34% less 8%, which means you need to lose 36% of your body fat. 36 divided by .5 equals 72 weeks. You will get your 6-pack abs in 72 weeks or 18 months. Now, that is from obese to really lean and contoured. But then again, .5% of body fat per week is a baby step. You can do more if you are strong in mind and heart. You can shorten the 72 weeks by 50%. It will really depend upon how you eat, how you work out and how you go on with your daily life.
Tips on how to get your 6-pack abs sooner than expected
You have to eat healthy foods and stick to your diet with determination. No cheat days. No over-sugary foods and no junk. If you are really craving for something sinful, fat and calorie filled, it will be better not to deprive yourself of it but take one bite and move away. There will come a time that you will stay focused and fixes will not be anymore an issue for you.
So, what is healthy eating? You have to switch the way you eat. No more oily foods, fatty foods, sugary foods and the likes. No more white pasta and bread. No more sugar drinks. Stick to natural like fruits and vegetables. And if you are to eat your meal, switch it to brown rice or whole wheat bread with 95% lean chicken, fish or beef. Stay away from pork too, if possible.
Eat at least 5 times every day in small portions. It will also be better to check with a nutritionist. He can give you a full menu to aid in your goal to lose fats and weight.
You have to do cardio work out. You are expected to do cardio without interruption for at least 15 minutes every day for 4-5 days. It can be whatever type of workout you like: rowing, treadmill, bike, cross trainer, aerobics, swimming, dancing and the likes. Do it without stopping and continuously.
You need to do some strength training. If you enrol in a gym, your trainer will give you an exercise routine good for a month and then you will be evaluated. It will not be focused on your abs alone. You cannot get six pack muscles if the rest of your body is all flab. It has to lose slowly and evenly all through out.
Usually, if you do abs and chest today, you will be working on your legs and shoulders/back tomorrow. The recommended strength training exercise is 4 times a week for beginners. You can slowly increase when you become more flexible and if you have improved after a month’s time. Your trainer will see to that.
Do not lose hope in getting your six pack abs. Just do what you are supposed to do – diet and exercise. Before you know it, you will be seeing those little mountains form on your body. You will get your abs - just work for it!