Abs is a shortened version of what is described as the abdominal muscles. These are a pair of muscles that run vertically on either side of the anterior wall of the abdomen. This set of muscles are parallel and they are separated by a connective tissue which is named the linea alba.
The abs are made up of four types of muscles. These are:
External Obliques: These muscles support the torso. They are present on the sides of the upper stomach and they help to easily twist the body from side to side.
Internal Obliques: These are on the lower and outer part of the belly. They work in line with the external obliques to help with turning and twisting.
Rectus Abdominis: These comprise of two muscle bands that surround the sternum. The bands of connective tissues that are between them help to give the abdominal muscles their characteristic look. These muscles are important for breathing as well as maintaining a good posture.
Transverse Abdominis: These muscles are deep and they go from one side to another. Although they are much harder to see, they provide strength as well as stability to the torso.
You can learn more about these parts and more here.
For people who work out or those who have low body fat, these belly muscles are visible externally. They are usually referred to as four, six, eight, or ten packs but six-packs are the most commonly visible and used.
Everybody has these abdominal muscles. This includes both males and females. The difference is that is it well defined in some than in others. For it to be defined, a person has to lose some of their belly fat. While for some people this is natural, most people need to take definite actions to achieve this. Both genders can achieve abs that are well-defined but hormonal as well as genetic factors can make it quite challenging especially for women to do so.
How to Get Fit Abs
An important factor that cannot be discounted in the way abs grow and look is genetics. This mostly affects females but all in all, males have more muscle mass so it is easier for them to build their abs. To get well-defined and fit abs, you need a combination of a good diet as well as exercises. Below are some of the things that you can do to get well-defined abs.
Do More Aerobic Exercises
Aerobics or cardio is the kind of exercise that helps to increase a person’s heart rate. They help you to burn any extra fat meaning that without the fat, you can begin to have well-defined abs.
Doing cardio exercises is very effective in reducing fat in the belly and this will in turn reveal abdominal muscles by making them more prominent.
To get fit with cardio, you should do at least 30 to 40 minutes or 200-300 minutes each week of moderate or vigorous exercises. These can include swimming, riding a bike, walking, running, gymnastics, etc.
Exercising the abdominal muscles helps in the increase of the muscle mass but note that these exercises alone are not sufficient to reduce fat in the belly.
To achieve the results you want, you would need to pair your exercises with a good and healthy diet. You can find some suggestions for such exercises online.
Eating the Right Diet
In addition to exercising, you need to eat the right diet to get fit abs. For one, you need to increase the amount of protein that you eat. Protein is important in building muscles and taking it helps to increase the feelings of fullness thus helping to control your appetite.
By consuming more protein, you reduce your calorie intake and this helps to significantly reduce body fat. Also, taking it after your workout will help to repair as well as rebuild muscle tissues and aid in quick muscle recovery. High protein consumption also helps to preserve metabolism as well as muscle mass.
The best form of protein to eat though are lean proteins. These are proteins that are low in fat. For example, these include foods such as:
- Dairy products
- Soybeans and so on.
In addition to protein, you should eat superfoods. These are foods that are full of nutrients and they help to maintain your overall health. Doing this helps in muscle building and fat loss. Examples of superfoods include:
- Olive oil
- Peanut butter
- Whey protein powder, etc.
Furthermore, adding high-fiber food to your diet is a simple way of losing weight and getting fit abs. Eating fiber will help you to feel full and also protect you against gaining weight.
Drink Lots of Water
You can never go wrong with drinking water. It is essential to every aspect of a person’s health. For your fitness program, it helps to reduce bloating in the belly and as such makes the abs well defined. Additionally, it helps in getting rid of waste from the body and in the regulation of body temperature.
Drinking water keeps you hydrated and will help to increase your metabolism while burning your belly fat.
The requirements for water intake can vary per individual based on different factors which include age, weight as well as a person’s level of activity. However, it is recommended to drink around eight cups of water every day. That is about 1 – 2 liters daily. You can tell if you are taking enough water through the color of your urine. The normal color ranges between pale yellow and deep amber.
You can check out BellyFitnessLab.com to find more fitness tips.
Getting fit and well-defined abs involve doing more than a few planks or crunches daily. The idea is to lose some belly fat and you can do this by combining effective exercise with a high-quality protein and fiber diet.
You should also strive to remain hydrated daily by drinking plenty of water and added to this, you should maintain an active lifestyle.