The best abs I've ever had was actually 10 years apart. 1998 and 2008. Let's review both:
1998: College: I was working out in the gym 6x a week, running 6x a week, and doing abs 7 days a week. Let's just say I had a lot of "free time". Diet was whatever my parents made for dinner, and drinking was about 4 days a week. Mostly Old English. For abs I got up to the point where I was doing 1,000 situps a night, every single night. I actually got to the point where I had testicular pain, and I ran to the Doctor thinking I had cancer. My abs were pretty insane that summer.
2008: Working full time: At this point I was doing weights 6x a week, and running 3-4 times a week. I was actually only doing Abs 2-3 a week, and only for a couple of minutes. The big difference between 1998 and 2008 was that the weights were A LOT heavier in the gym, and my diet was SUPER strict. Cardio in 1998 and 2008 was very similar, everything fast and under 3 miles.
2012: I think I might try to do 1,000 sit ups a night again. I just cut down to 163lbs from 173, and I plan on going into the mid 150's. I went all out tonight and I was only able to get around 125 situps after a couple sets, so It might take a while. So this year my workout will be 5x a week of weights, 3-4 days a week of running, and 1,000 situps a night.
This is today's picture,I only have 3 1/2 abs but I am starting to get the top side pockets. Power Out
Hey guys, thanks for the comments. The situps and crunches are actually the easiest part. I just do it for 20 minutes while I watch tv, the hard part is making it to the gym and track 6 days a week. I just really enjoy it, and most importantly it's healthy. I'm only 32 and a good 75 percent of my friends have high blood pressure already....
Even the importance or desirability of performing crunches, probably the most iconic and certainly the most common of core exercises, is uncertain. Research by Dr. McGill and others has shown that repeated bending of the spine, such as occurs when most of us do crunches, can over time contribute to damage of the spinal discs. When cadaver pig spines were placed in machines as part of a series of recent experiments and bent and flexed hundreds of times, the pigs' spinal discs almost always ruptured, eventually.
No one needs to perform hundreds or even dozens of crunches, said Brad Schoenfeld, a professor of exercise science at Lehman College in the Bronx and an author of a newly published review article about core exercises titled"To Crunch or Not to Crunch." And while everyone needs some basic minimum of core strength , getting up out of a chair requires a certain amount of core strength; serving a tennis ball requires more - "six or eight crunches would be plenty," he said, "and only a few times a week."
Training can take a relatively small amount of time, and doing simple body weight exercises are great for "refresher downtime" which you should integrate in between solid blocks of work. You are much more likely to be more productive if you follow your natural circadian rhythms and take a break from doing something intellectual and move into doing something physical for 10-15 minutes or something emotional (such as meditation) then moving back to an uninterrupted period of work. Check out Tony Schwartz' book for more on this.
You could train abs, you could stretch, you could do simple calisthenics, meditate, anything really. Just moving your concentration to a completely different "head space" allows you to recuperate and become more productive. It's more sustainable in the long term than simply downing some more coffee.
Nice work! I'm a big fan of setting even kind of arbitrary body goals just because they're such good exercise in discipline, they're such measurable and tough goals.
I disagree with New Bike. I think it's great you're doing it. And, uh, I think you should definitely continue posting photos as you get more ripped. Or email them to me directly! ;) (OK but seriously, the fact that all your photos on your site are headless does remind me very strongly of Grindr. If you're straight, you can google it if you like, but in any case headless photos are one of its hallmarks.)
Do you do back work to balance out the abs? I specifically do sets of pushups on gym rings to keep chest development up to pace with my upper back development from rock climbing. I feel like when I've developed one group and not its antagonist, I get imbalances, tightness, and chronic pain or acute injury.
I think it's cool you set out to do something and then did it, but... I think we also need to think about our goals before we start out on 'em. The purpose for having bad ass abs is so that in the moment where you have your shirt off (a couple hours a day, maybe?) girls/guys enjoy seeing them? I am trying to think of another benefit but I don't know of one. Downsides maybe include it taking a ridiculous amount of time, having a sore stomach and a lot of stress on your spine. I guess I feel like time could be better spent.
Are you interested in working out, but have no idea how? That's where I was until a year and a half ago. I avoided the gym because I was so clueless about what to do there that I didn't want to make a fool of myself.
Looking information on the internet is almost pointless, because every document out there is for people who know what they're doing. I didn't.
I finally got an idea of what to do when I moved to LA. One of my roommates, Tyler, is considered to be perhaps the most obsessed and analytical pickup artist in the business. I mean that in a good way - for a while he made it his life, and as a result he got to the top faster than anyone else ever has.
I was lifting weights, and before I had even finished my warmup, I quit.
I wasn’t in pain and there was no logical reason for me to stop, but I did. I had just taken a few extra recovery days the week before so the problem wasn’t overtraining. I had slept well and eaten healthy the day of the workout, but for some reason I quit.
There appears to be some mechanism in our brains that’s geared toward survival and when I had the thought that maybe lifting weights wasn’t 100% necessary my body decided to conserve energy and give up on me. I allowed my body to control me as if I was an animal so, I had the idea to treat myself like one.
During my next workout I decided that not only was I going to finish my whole workout, but as punishment for giving up on myself I was also going to add 5 pounds to each lift. I decided that no matter what happened, I wasn’t going to leave until I got through my whole workout. And it worked. I completed each lift, and strangely enough the weights actually felt lighter than before.
I can’t tell you why the weights felt lighter, but I can tell you that increasing the amount I had to lift worked. Maybe it’s because I was more inspired by the higher goal and my body produced more adrenaline than it typically does. Maybe my body thought I would increase the amount of weight it would have to lift if it failed. I don’t know, and while I’m still not sure this is the best long term strategy to be using in the gym, I’ve been able to apply it to others aspects of my life quite successfully.