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  1. #1
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    Default How Many Days a Week Should I Do Abs?

    I am currently doing the 4-Day Power Muscle Burn workout program. I have been doing 2 ab exercises (3 sets of 12 reps, WITH resistance) per workout day. However I've recently come to realize that I should probably only be doing abs ONE DAY a week, since it's just another small muscle group...

    I wanted to get some professional advice before dropping down to only one day a week. Should I do this? Maybe 2 days a week? If I drop down to one day a week should I still only do 2 or 3 exercises?


    Sorry if this has already been addressed and thank you to all who respond.


    EDIT: I am not seeing the 6-pack abs that I want. I have a good bit of ab strength but the 4 abs I do have visible are thin and not very impressive looking. Thanks!

  2. #2
    Dark Meat dday39's Avatar
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    abs are made in the kitchen

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    Yes I should have mentioned that I am on a high protien low sugar diet as well. And working in plenty of cardio, I just wonder am I overworking my abs by working them 4 days a week.

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    Dark Meat dday39's Avatar
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    cardio is good for heart health but not necessary for fat loss
    without knowing the particulars, I doubt you're overworking your abs (crunches, planks, etc aren't very effective anyway)

  5. #5
    Frequent Poster ChUt26's Avatar
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    Once a week is fine. Like Dday said... they're made in the kitchen.

    There is a saying... "If your abs are showing... you ain't growing"

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    I try to vary the exercises a lot but most of my go-to's are:

    decline crunch (weighted)
    decline abdominal reach (weighted)
    cable crunch (weighted)
    roman chair knee (weighted)
    roman chair leg lifts (weighted)
    low wood chop (weighted)
    ab pendelum
    hanging leg lift

    A few others get mixed in from time to time, but I usually pick two out of that list per day.


    Edit: Thanks Dday and Chut for the advice so far!

  7. #7
    M&S Power User Nezzy's Avatar
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    On PMB your abs get plenty if work from squats and the like.

    Word of advice from someone who went down the exact same route, switch to a full body beginner program. With you being less than 6months into training you'll get faster results from a 5x5 full body program.
    2013 Gym PRs
    Squat = 140kg ...... Deadlift = 180kg ...... Bench = 95kg
    2014 Gym PRs
    Squat = 162.5kg ...... Deadlift = 192.5kg ...... Bench = 105kg
    2015 Gym PRs
    Squat = 170kg ... Deadlift = No improvement ... Bench = No Improvement

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    Thanks, Nezzy. Any suggested Full Body Programs?

    Edit: Also, I've actually been working out over a year now, I just haven't updated my Years Exp since last year when I started this account. Would you still suggest a Full Body?

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    Abs are made in the kitchen. 80percent of your abs are nutrition and 20percent is exercise. I really think you should consider a quality diet and nutrition program. Do you track your calories? My fitness pal is a great tool to use for this. Also make sure you increase the amount of healthy fats in your diet to give you the energy you need to perform quality exercise. I use almonds and olive oil for mine.
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  10. #10
    The Strongman Brute's Avatar
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    Abs are made in the gym. Revealed in the kitchen. If you have no muscle there, there's nothing to show.
    You Can't Out-Diet Lousy Training.

    Team BEAR

    Forever Bulking

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    I do track my food intake and I'm on a High Protien, Moderate Fat, Low Sugar (carb) diet. I can see the abs, my question comes more from a "am I doing too much when I could get the same results (or better ones) by working my abs only one or two days a week" rather than "why don't I have abs!". I know that overworking a muscle is sometimes as detrimental as underworking, and I have become curious if this is the reason my abs are slim instead of these thick, huge abs I see on really cut people (think Joe Manganiello).

    Thanks for all the replies! Still weighing and considering certain options.

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    Yup abs are made in the kitchen.. i do my abs every other day for recovery purposes.. but thats just me

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    Are u doing enough cardio to burn off the fat?

  14. #14
    Dark Meat dday39's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CMExercises View Post
    Are u doing enough cardio to burn off the fat?
    cardio isn't very effective at burning fat
    cardio is good for heart health but not necessary for fat loss

  15. #15
    M&S Power User Nezzy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Doslean View Post
    Thanks, Nezzy. Any suggested Full Body Programs?

    Edit: Also, I've actually been working out over a year now, I just haven't updated my Years Exp since last year when I started this account. Would you still suggest a Full Body?
    The usual suggestions are Stronglifts, Starting Strength, All Pros beginner routine, and probably a few others. Experience tends to be measured in strength rather than time.

    When I started doing stronglifts (after 6 months of power muscle burn and about 10 years of ineffective gym experience) I downloaded the spreadsheet he sends out. In it, it suggests to go with stronglifts 5x5 as long as your lifts are below:

    Squat: 122.5kg for 5 reps (270lbs)
    Bench: 97.5kg for 5 reps (215bs)
    Overhead Press: 67.5kg for 5 reps (150lbs)
    Row: 75kg for 5 reps (170lbs)
    Deadlift: 152.5kg for 5 reps (335lbs)

    So basically if you can lift more than above then you're an intermediate lifter, congrats, if not you're still a beginner (like me).
    2013 Gym PRs
    Squat = 140kg ...... Deadlift = 180kg ...... Bench = 95kg
    2014 Gym PRs
    Squat = 162.5kg ...... Deadlift = 192.5kg ...... Bench = 105kg
    2015 Gym PRs
    Squat = 170kg ... Deadlift = No improvement ... Bench = No Improvement

  16. #16
    M&S Power User Nezzy's Avatar
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    ^The above is based on my starting weight of 82kg. If you weigh less than me then the values will be slightly different. Let me know your lifts and weight and I'll run the numbers through the spreadsheet.
    2013 Gym PRs
    Squat = 140kg ...... Deadlift = 180kg ...... Bench = 95kg
    2014 Gym PRs
    Squat = 162.5kg ...... Deadlift = 192.5kg ...... Bench = 105kg
    2015 Gym PRs
    Squat = 170kg ... Deadlift = No improvement ... Bench = No Improvement

  17. #17
    Regular Poster rantorcha's Avatar
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    Cardio is absolutely necessary to lose fat long term. You might be able to get away with no cardio for a short amount of time, but without extra expediture, the body quickly gets used to the reduced calories. If it wasn't necessary, you certainly wouldn't see bodybuilders, fitness competitors, etc do any!

    As for your abs, I would train them once or twice a week for 2-4 sets tops. As mentioned above, if there aren't any muscles there, there isn't anything to show.
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  18. #18
    Dark Meat dday39's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rantorcha View Post
    Cardio is absolutely necessary to lose fat long term..
    its not absolutely necessary. people will do a lot of things that aren't necessary and still make progress toward their goals.
    if there's food/energy available, your body isn't going to tap into your fat stores. calorie deficit is necessary. while cardio can help you to create deficit through energy expenditure, its not necessary. planned refeeds are important in dieting/cutting

  19. #19
    Just joined M&S Blueeyes1's Avatar
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    Seriously??? and I have been crunching like crazy and doing planks. What is more effective? I certainly don't want to waste time doing them if they don't work

  20. #20
    Dark Meat dday39's Avatar
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    crunches aren't very effective, some people will claim they're hard on the neck
    I like the ab wheel and weighted ab work, some women don't like weighted ab work because it can give the appearance of a thick midsection
    diet is going to help you acheive a 'flat/toned' stomach more than direct ab work

  21. #21
    The Strongman Brute's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dday39 View Post
    crunches aren't very effective, some people will claim they're hard on the neck
    I like the ab wheel and weighted ab work, some women don't like weighted ab work because it can give the appearance of a thick midsection
    diet is going to help you acheive a 'flat/toned' stomach more than direct ab work
    Good advice. just like any other muscle, you'll need to increase resistance over time to make it grow. and just like any other muscle, lower body fat will make it easier to see.
    You Can't Out-Diet Lousy Training.

    Team BEAR

    Forever Bulking

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    Hey bro. Did you. Find a decent Ab routine yet? I think you should really consider some cable crunches and some HIIT training for cardio. How is your stamina? How well do you do with high intensity cardio? I think this will blast the fat off your body and leave you shredded! Good luck on your training and workouts I wish you all the best. I hope it works out for you.
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  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by dday39 View Post
    cardio isn't very effective at burning fat
    cardio is good for heart health but not necessary for fat loss
    Cardio is so effective at burning fat!! What kind of idiot says it isn't! Of course you have to be in a calorie deficiency but unless you have a very high metabolism cardio is needed. Why do you think all bodybuilders do cardio during there contest prep to get as lean as possible. For god sakes stop giving your crap advice and go lift! People like you are why this site has been ruined and most all people with any kind of real knowledge do nothing more then pop in every now and again.
    So you say you dont listin to the "big guy at the gym anymore" Instead you read articles and studys and go of what some science study on the internet says. Hows that working for ya? Big guy still big you still small...
    Bench 345 - 10reps
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  24. #24
    M&S Elite Member OneGun's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dday39 View Post
    cardio isn't very effective at burning fat
    I disagree completely... speaking from experience.

  25. #25
    M&S Power User Nezzy's Avatar
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    My not so scientific unproven take on this issue:

    If you want to lose weight you need to eat less than you burn. For the average joe trying to get down to a healthy body size cardio is largely irrelevant and diet change is the most important thing. For your body builders trying to get down an extra % of body fat before their competition, cardio is borderline essential. I'm yet to read an interview with a body builder who doesn't use cardio whilst cutting and I'm yet to here of someone (bar eating disorders) with a body fat % under 10 who doesn't use cardio. When I think of people with extremely low body fat, (professional cyclists will go as low as 2% for the duration of a tour), they are people who live on cardio exercise. Of course a professional cyclist has no interest at all in muscle mass, so being catabolic is less of an issue.

    My guess for the OP is that the best bet would be to get a lot stronger on a slow bulk (a year or so) and then try losing some weight and seeing how your abs look.
    2013 Gym PRs
    Squat = 140kg ...... Deadlift = 180kg ...... Bench = 95kg
    2014 Gym PRs
    Squat = 162.5kg ...... Deadlift = 192.5kg ...... Bench = 105kg
    2015 Gym PRs
    Squat = 170kg ... Deadlift = No improvement ... Bench = No Improvement

 

 

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