The ab battle. Isn’t it common? Everyone wants a 6 pack and they want it now!
I’ve always been fortunate enough to have somewhat of a flat stomach. When I gain weight (fat), it goes to my love handles, my arms, my butt and my thighs. It’s not that I am special, or gifted for not getting a prominent belly. That’s just genetically where my fat is mostly stored on my body. A flat stomach isn’t always necessarily a defined stomach. Only when I began bodybuilding, (lowering specific macronutrients and increasing my activity) did I see some definition in my core. I still however, did not have those rock hard abs that you see in magazines and on social media. What people fail to realize is that the reason why some can see their abs on a regular basis, is partially due to their genetics. I know, it sucks but it’s the truth!
Now of course there are other things that come into play, your diet being one of them. I wanted abs, but I also didn’t want to be strict with my diet. At the same time I wanted to be lean, I wanted a large curvy rump. While these are common goals, they don’t all necessarily coincide with each other. Unfortunately, you won’t get those hard-defined abs to show through if you’re not eating a proper diet. If you aren’t being consistent, you won’t drop enough fat to allow the abs to pop through. You also won’t get that rump if you’re not fueling your body properly to build your glute muscles. Specific towards the ab goal (Although I’m’ sure Gar wouldn’t mind a booty too) I will use my dad as an example 😉 He is always telling me how many crunches he does a day, but he’s not watching his diet. Will his abs make an appearance if he doesn’t start paying closer attention to his diet? Unfortunately, not. Sorry Dad! It is also possible to not be eating enough and have a flat, lifeless tummy. When you think of super models, their goal is to be small, not necessarily lean. I can’t remember the last time I saw a model (Other than a fitness model) with a shredded 6 pack and killer oblique’s. That’s because rarely are they watching their macronutrients. They are more focused on body weight and frame to fit into certain sized clothes. Rather than focusing on macros (protein, fats, carbs) they are focusing on total calories consumed. This is a random comparison, but it’s what comes to mind when I think of a SMALL frame compared to a LEAN frame. Even when I am at my leanest, I still don’t have the coveted and elusive 6 pack, because that’s not how my body is naturally built. Does this in anyway mean you don’t have to train your abs? Of course, not! Diet is key with the visibility of abs yes, but they’re also strengthened in the gym. You should train your entire body to become stronger and in better overall shape.
We all want to spot treat and have the best of both world’s when unfortunately, that’s not how our bodies work. I’m always asked why people don’t have abs yet, or even why I don’t have abs. After all, aren’t I a bodybuilder? (Thanks tips). They want abs but they also want to grow their glutes and gain muscle! They want to work on their metabolism and their relationship with food, but they also want to compete and lean out. When it comes to such specific goals, you need to understand that each goal is going to take different diet and training approaches. When my goal is to lean out, and I am close to show with my core as defined as it’s ever been, my butt is a lot smaller. Because my glutes hold a lot of body fat and with the loss of fat, comes the loss of booty size. Now, when I regain the weight lost after a show, my core isn’t as defined, but my butt gets bigger. This may all seem like common sense to some people, but to others it’s not. Too often, we compare ourselves to someone else who is genetically built differently than we are and wanting their body. Yes, they may have well defined abs, but you are not them. If you really want a more defined stomach, you’re going to have to accept the sacrifices that come along with it. Sacrifice’s like reducing specific macronutrients, and possibly upping your activity. Even then, the genetics to have those crazy abs may not be there. But instead of focusing on what you don’t have, focus on what you do have!
For example, even though my abs aren’t really something that stand out as part of my physique, I have accepted and celebrated the fact that I have bigger and more muscular legs than other bikini competitors. It doesn’t take much for me genetically to put on muscle and to maintain it. But it takes me a great deal of hard work to drop fat. I’ve worked hard on my legs and I’m proud of them. Some Bikini Competitors may be blessed with abs, but must work hard to build muscle and continue to work hard to maintain it. Work with what you do have and make a conscious effort to improve and accentuate it, rather than obsess over what someone else has been blessed with. You’ve been blessed too! Take time to realize what you’ve been blessed with ❤
The featured photo is from my most recent contest CBBF Nationals 2016, where I reached my leanest physique to date. Here my body fat percentage is very low, and I still don’t have those crazy abs. Does that mean I am out of shape? Absolutely not. Your physique is only one aspect of being physically in shape.