Hopefully, it’s not long before we all get to hit the beach, but before we do we want our six-packs to take with us right? I’m not talking about six ice-cold beers. I’m talking about abs.
Anyone who hasn’t already had them is probably wondering ‘how long does it take to get abs anyway?’ Well, I’m here with some good news and some bad news. The good news is that it won’t take forever, but it is going to take dedication.
Here’s what you’re going to have to do to be the proud owner of the fitness enthusiast’s magnum opus.
What Are Abs Anyway?
It pays to know what you’re building before you buy the tools! Your abs are a long, flat band of fibers that span vertically from under the ribs down to your pubic bone. Also known as the rectus abdominis.
The rectus abdominis is part of a group of muscles that make up your core. The core’s main purpose is to stabilize the spine. Sadly, no matter how well-toned and strong your rectus abdominis is, there is still a reason you might not be able to see that six-pack just yet.
Where’s My Six-Pack?
A muscle will start to take shape in as little as 4-8 weeks with a good exercise routine. For the abs this would consist of sit-ups, crunches, hanging leg raises, planks, and variations of all of the above. However, if your body fat percentage is too high, you’re just not going to be able to show off your hard work.
The American Council of Exercise has a scale for measuring a person’s body fat, and in order to see that six-pack you’ve been working on, you’re going to have to fall into the ‘athlete’ category. That’s 14 to 20 percent body fat for women and six to 13 percent for men.
How Long Does It Take to Get Abs
Back to the original question. How long is it going to take you to have a visible six-pack? The answer is ‘it depends’.
It’s going to largely depend on where you’re starting from. The great thing is that if you can’t see your abs yet, there’s no confusion about what you have to do: You need to lose body fat.
In order to lose body fat, your body needs to be in a calorie deficit. A deficit of 500 calories every day will amount to around one pound of fat loss a week. Your body does not like being here, it feels hungry, so it’s going to take dedication. Here are a few tricks that will help:
- Get your nutrition on point
- Cut out sugar and refined carbs
- Try intermittent fasting
- Drink more water and tea
- Eat more protein
- Do fast cardio in the mornings
- Incorporate resistance and HIIT workouts
- Be sure to do ab workouts to help tone the stomach area
Clean eating is going to be your best friend for this journey. With a solid exercise and nutrition plan, you can expect to see your six-pack within six months if you’re starting with around 20 percent body fat.
If you’re over thirty percent then it could take up to two years. The important thing is to enjoy the journey. Remember why you’re doing it and take note of all the other accomplishments on the way.
Get Those Abs Popping
There might not be a straight up answer to “how long does it take to get abs?” But with patience and dedication, you’ll get there.
Be wary of shortcuts and fad-diets. If you want abs, you want to be healthy too. Eat clean, enjoy your workouts, and feel good all the way to that six-pack. See you on the beach.
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