The ultimate dream of the ripped six-pack is not out of reach. It’s obvious that to uncover these thick, chiseled abs you need to follow a healthy and effective diet to shed the body fat that covers them. So let’s assume you have all been dieting and have some abs showing already. Now let’s make them really pop!
The following is a breakdown of my current six-pack training circuit. I perform this every other day throughout the week.
Always exhale before the full contraction phase of the exercise. It allows you to fully tighten the core and intensify the contraction!
Exercise 1 (upper/mid abdomen) – Kneeling Cable Crunches, 20 reps
Personally I like to use the V-bar handle, but any rope or straight bar will be sufficient. This exercise is all about the mind-muscle connection and a hard contraction. Position yourself a few feet away from the vertical pulley set as high as possible. Set the knees and hips in place and do not move them. Lean forward to create tension and stretch out the abdomen. Now contract the abs, drive the elbows down to the knees and squeeze! Slowly stretch back up to the staring position and repeat. A slow and controlled tempo is key for this exercise.
Exercise 2 (lower abdomen) – Decline Bench Hip Raises, 15 reps
Set up a standard bench into a slight decline position. The greater the decline, the greater the resistance and the more challenging the movement. Position the body so that the glutes are at the edge of the bench. Lay flat, reach back and grab the bench behind your head. Extend the lower body outward and bring the legs up and in, ending somewhere over your head, all while using the lower abs to crunch and raise the hips up and off the bench. Slowly lower the legs back out and down to the starting position. You should feel the lower abs stretch back out. The tip for this exercise is thinking about making your belly button touch your chest. Focus on bringing those two points as close together as possible and don’t forget to get the hips up!
Exercise 3 (total six-pack development) – Suitcase Crunch, 25 reps
On a flat bench or flat ground, lay on your back. Put the legs together and bring the knees up to a 90-degree angle to the torso with lower legs 90 degrees to the thighs. Now perform a standard crunch, but at the same time contract the lower abs and bring the knees towards the upper body to touch the elbows. Squeeze, hold and then stretch back out to the starting position.
Perform these three movements in a circuit with a 60-second rest between circuits. Four or five total rounds should have your core burning and sore for days!