Think that only men can aim for and want a sculpted six pack or at least well-defined abs? Think again! More women are using exercise to really tone their body, including their abdominal muscles, rather than aiming simply for slender bodies and focusing solely on weight-loss plans. While part of the desire to look tight might be aesthetic there are many other reasons why women want killer abs!
When we talk about getting our abdominals in shape, or creating solid abs, what we are really talking about is strengthening our core. The strong, shapely look of abs that have been defined through dedicated exercise and training certainly do look great. They give the body a fit, sporty look. Beyond this, a strong core is really beneficial and can have a positive impact on your health and your life in general.
Creates a flatter stomach
With defined abdominals your whole torso looks taut and pulled in. This create a thinner looking body that is toned and well-conditioned. Core exercises and working out in general build up muscle strength, especially if you find the right mix of cardio and strength training. In turn, these more powerful muscles burn up more calories working out, leading to weight loss.
Reduces cortisol produced fat
While women's bodies are built to look womanly, many women do struggle with getting rid of excess fat around their midsection. The stress hormone cortisol can send messages to the body to store fat around this area. Strengthening the core and the abdominal muscles helps reduce the cortisol levels and this has an impact on shifting this weight around the middle.
Allows for a more active lifestyle
Don't think that strong abdominal muscles are only ever worthwhile if you are intent on spending your life doing pull-ups and crunches. The whole point of your core is that you are using it all the time. Women who get their abs in shape also add power to core muscles which can improve your everyday activities, whether that's going for a hike or running around with the family.
Alleviates back pain
It's good to think of ab workouts as creating a support within your body. Many core muscles are found in your back and by working on these, especially in the lower back area where so many people have problems, you can decrease either the severity or frequency of back issues, or both.
Protects against fitness injuries
A six pack is an outward appearance of a robust core and from this radiates strength, support, and proper form for the rest of the body and other movements. This strong centre can protect the body and guard against injuries sustained in training and through activities.
Reduces risk of serious health issues
Excess body fat around the abdomen, or layers of visceral fat near to the organs, can also pose real health concerns. A Canadian study of more than 8,000 people found that over 13 years those with the weakest muscles in the abdominal region had a mortality rate double that of those who had stronger cores and abdominals. Other health problems linked to abdominal strength include heart disease, high blood pressure and even cancer.
Strengthens the back to help the spine
If the muscles in your core are strong then this training is also going to allow for greater flexibility for your spine and better support through stronger back muscles. This is essential for avoiding back problems, improving your posture and creating internal balance and stability.
If you want to work on your abs for a flatter stomach and to enjoy the many other health benefits of a strong core then you need a quality training program and to make sure your diet backs up your fitness regime. We can help you achieve you and your abs.