I will explain which information is good, and which myths and rumors about abs you can throw out. Let's begin with the most popular myths about abdominals:
1. If You Train Abs Everyday, You're Guaranteed a Six-pack. This misconception was funneled through the bodybuilding world. Muscle tissue is muscle tissue. It needs to rest and recover just like your bicep. You would not do 100 bicep curls everyday would you? Simple anatomy bucks this approach unless you are using some performance enhancing substances.
2. You Can Eat Pizza and Hamburgers and Still Maintain a Six-pack as Long as You Workout Right After You Eat Them. This is another misconception. Having a diet, which contributes to muscle gaining and fat loss, is the key to uncovering those abdominal muscles. Go into your local fast food restaurant and look around - how many of people have the abdominal region you desire?!
3. Sit-ups Build Abdominal Definition the Best. Sit-ups are perhaps the worst exercise for strengthening our core region. There are many factors that contribute to this thought process. During sit-ups your main trunk flexor, the Iliopsoas muscle, does most of the work. This over facilitation often leads to lumbar lordosis (what is this?) and back pain.
4. Crunches Build Abdominal Definition
the Best. Crunches are the last exercise we will do in our
core-conditioning program. The overuse of crunch type exercises
leads to a reduction in thoracic extension and
contributes to bad posture.
5. People on Magazine Covers Are Born
with Good Midsections.
This misconception leads to many people trying to be like someone else. These models, men and women, are somewhat genetically gifted. The gift comes from the ability to keep fat at a minimum, however, many of these so-called genetically gifted men and women workout every day to maintain this admired look. You can write off that excuse.
6. You Should Do Twists with a Stick or Side Bends to Reduce Love Handles. These exercises can be dangerous. I recommend taking them out of your routine, as you'll see in the exercise section. To reduce love handles you simply need to lose the fat. Our core-conditioning program will contribute to toning the musculature in this area; however, fat loss is of the up most importance.
7. If You Do Sit-ups with Weights, Your
Abs Will Show up Better. Doing sit-ups with weights can
lead to over strengthening the hip flexor muscles
(illiopsoas) and the upper abdominals. The over strengthening of these muscles can lead to lower back pain. This is due to muscle angle and attachment of the illiopsoas.
8. It Takes Years to Get Great Abs. Again you have to understand everyone has abdominal muscles. You just have to train them in the correct order and reduce the fat surrounding them. For some this may take a few weeks, for others longer. Different body types develop at different rates.
This is just the scratching the surface!