Question from the audience: “Help! I’m going on vacation in 7 weeks and I need my abs to look good. What should I do?”
A: There are a number of ways to approach this problem. We’ll get to that. But first, I feel the need to lecture for a moment, and I can feel everyone’s eyes rolling at how annoying I am…Everyone with whom I have had the great fortune to work knows how I feel about questions like these. Getting stronger and healthier is most important, and good looks will naturally stem from your fitter, healthier, more energized and more confident appearance. Obviously, diet plays a big role. I am not a nutritionist, and you should consult one if you are looking for specific advice on how and what to eat. I can tell you in general that a good diet high in lean protein, vegetables and whole grains and low in processed sugar and simple carbohydrates will help you to build muscle and drop belly fat. The second part of what nobody wants to hear is that to accomplish the goal of attractive abs in 7 weeks, you are going to have to work hard. You are going to have to work up a sweat 5 or 6 days a week, and for suggestions on how to fit that into your life please feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org, or message me on Facebook on my Points North Physical Therapy page.
Now, back to abs, which is what we really want to talk about. In addition to proper diet and a regular fitness regimen, core strengthening will eventually improve the appearance of your abdominal muscles. There are several ways to accomplish this. You can go to fitnessmagazine.com and click on “abs” under the “workouts” tabs for a series of core strengthening exercises. You can download core strengthening exercises from the Nike Training Club iPhone app. My favorite is Jeannette Jenkins’ “Ab Blast.” If you are in Stowe, you can attend any number of great fitness classes in the area at a time that works for you. Some of the best of course taught by Chad of Chad Couto Fitness.
I am fully aware that I can lead you to water but can’t make you drink. All of this at once may be too much for some of us. If you are paralyzed in terror at the thought of making all of these changes by yourself all at once, let’s start slowly. Let’s just start with one thing at a time. I am going to post a favorite core exercise every day for the next 5 days. Today, try just this one. Tomorrow, try #1 and #2, and so on. Your challenge is to do these exercises daily, make the changes that you can to your diet and fitness regimen, and see how you feel!