Are abs made in the kitchen? | 5 Myths about abdominal muscles
- Body & Gym Posts
- 23 Aug, 2018
A nicely defined batch of abs attracts a lot of eyes. We are all charmed by a sturdy washboard and therefore we would like, in addition to a strong and well-developed core, that these angular abdominal muscles be turned forward. There are many discussions going on around the training of the abs, we have listed the biggest myths for you!
Fable 1: You need to train your abs every day for the best results
Recently that the abdominal muscles, called the rectus abdominis, is a smaller muscle group than, for example, the back or chest, these muscles also need a recovery period. If you train them intensively, you will also have to have them properly repaired. Just as you are used to maintaining a rest period of up to 48-72 hours for another muscle group, this naturally also applies to the abs. There are indeed athletes who indicate that they can train their abdominal muscles every day without any overload. Here comes the intensity of the workout to take a look. These are often less intensive training sessions and therefore require a shorter recovery.
Because the abs are fast muscles, also called Type || muscle fibers, and require a shorter recovery, you cannot train them every 24 hour, but you can train every 48 hour. It is therefore advisable not to train them more than three times a week, and certainly not on consecutive days. The advice is to train the abdominal muscles only two days a week and to provide them with a good approach. It is also a tip if you want to put a lot of focus on the abs to train them split. You can train the abdominal muscles 4 times a week, but focus on the abs the first day and on the obliques the next day (oblique abdominal muscles).
Fable 2: Abdominal muscles you train with many repetitions
Returning a little to the previous myth, where we assume that the abs is an '' other '' type of muscle group. For recovery we use the same rules as with other muscle groups, why don't we think about the number of repetitions? The abdominal muscles also need the same kind of stimuli for hypertrophy to grow. This means that they are given an incentive to grow with sufficient mechanical tension and metabolic stress. Here too, a progessive overload is important to be able to deliver this growth stimulus over and over again. That means that every workout for your abs should be more challenging. This can be achieved by either an increase in weight or an increase in repetitions. We assume the most recommended number of repetitions for muscle growth; 8 to 15 repeats per set.
So the trick is to keep surprising your muscles. Your variation is very important here. If you vary the time under tension (the duration of the repetition) you will therefore also achieve faster results. You can vary endlessly here by playing with the negative (return movement) or the eccentric part of the movement. For example, this is when the crunch comes up. Vary between slower and faster reps and always perform the movement in a controlled manner.
Fable 3: The crunch is the best abdominal muscle exercise
The crunch is one of the most famous abdominal exercises. This is often performed on the flat back, possibly with a heavier weight, and puts full focus on the rectus abdominis, or the abdominal muscles! From this you conclude that the crunch is a form of isolation exercise. It is generally known that most bodybuilders already know that isolation exercises are not the number 1 when it comes to building muscle. With empty extensions you can, for example, grow a good definition in your quadriceps, but you really want to build mass on your thighs, you will really have to take it from the squats and leg presses. In these exercises, therefore, multiple muscle fibers are activated so that the muscles work together as a team.
The same applies to the abs. These work best when they work together with the hip tensioners. There are many core-oriented exercises that you perform with a lot of strength and (possibly) speed, whereby you let the abs work hard to keep the body under complete control. Angled sit-ups and hanging knee-ups are an example of this.
Myth 4: Leg raises is one of the best ab killers
We already mentioned above that the abs work best in combination with an activation of the hip tensioners. For example, in an exercise such as the leg raises where you lie at the end of a bench and throw your legs into the air, you put a good focus on the abdominal muscles. Unfortunately it is with this exercise that you stimulate the abdominal muscles minimally because almost only the hip tensioners do the work. This causes too little dynamic movement in the abdominal muscles in relation to the hip tensioners if you do not perform the exercise correctly. To perform this exercise correctly you need to roll your hips up to your upper body. This is essential to appeal to the abs.
For the hanging version it is equally important to have a good understanding of the hip roll. For many people this is often difficult to implement correctly. The oblique variant can thereby offer a better alternative for those who still have difficulty with this.
Fable 5. You burn fat through abdominal muscle training
One of the greatest myths perhaps around the abs training. Do a lot of repetitions and therefore burn fat. We also call that cardiovascular training, or cardio. We would like to draw your attention to the fact that strength training makes you stronger and / or more muscular. Strength training is in principle not intended for fat burning. The nice thing about this is, the more muscle mass you have, the more and faster you burn!
Burning local fat is and remains impossible. You can do as many repetitions during the abdominal muscle training as you wish but the local burning of fat will remain a fairy tale for us all. With strength training you will no longer burn in relation to a low rep range by means of a certain number of repetitions. This difference is zero. For fat burning there is a golden rule of thumb, use more calories than you get in, simple
This can be done by adding cardio to your training schedule to burn extra calories or by being in a small calorie deficit. It is important that you create a short gap that you can build up slowly. After all, you want to maintain as much muscle mass as possible and if you are too low in calories this can be at the expense of the mass that you have built up. Try to reduce approximately 100-200 calories from your daily requirement and to reduce this by three steps every three weeks. Only by lowering your fat percentage will you be able to conjure up that washboard step by step.