Should I Do Crunches to Get Abs?

September 13, 2017

 

 

One of the biggest questions I hear from both moms and women who are not moms is, "Will I have abs if I do crunches?"

 

Simply put, not really. 

 

If your only change is to do 200 crunches a day, you are not going to see visible improvement without a few more factors.

 

Here's the low-down on having a taught midsection...

 

1.) Your body fat percentage has to be low.

 

This involves fat loss through two mediums: nutrition and training. You need your overall body fat to be low enough to see your abdominals. Everyone "has" abs. The problem is if there is too much fat covering them up, you won't see them. 

 

By heart-pumping cardio and strength workouts where you get your heart rate up, you will gradually decrease your body fat percentage and help reveal your abs. 

 

2.) You need to lift heavy weights.

 

Some bodybuilders have the most cut abs around but do no specific "core" exercises. How is this possible? First of all, they follow step 1- they have low body fat. Secondly, those who lift heavy weights tax their core, thus making it work harder and get stronger.

 

If you are only lifting five pound weights over a long period of time, your core does not have to stabilize much as you move the weight. However, if you are lifting a weight that is extremely challenging for you, your core has to step in and help keep everything else in place while you attempt to complete the lift. 

 

3.) You need to incorporate challenging core training (not crunches).

 

Crunches only focus on the upper rectus abdominis, not involving all of the other surrounding muscles and allow you only a limited range of motion. Training your core through stabilization and anti-rotational exercises will be a much better use of your time.

 

For example: planks, side planks, and pushing/pulling moves with bands or dumbbells which require your abs to stabilize.

 

 

If you combine these three elements: low body fat percentage, heavy weights, and challenging core moves, you will see results! Stay tuned for more instructional photos and videos on some great core moves and as always, comment or message me with any questions!

 

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