Washboard six pack abs are something every man wants. A strong powerful mid-section says we’re ready for anything, while a low body fat reminds the world we’re bang in our prime. When looking to attract the opposite set – a six pack might even seal the deal. Here’s seven secrets to getting yours, fast!
7 Secrets for a Shredded Six Pack Core
1. Enter a Calorie Deficit
Bro, it’s simple science. You cannot lose weight, specifically body fat, while eating in excess. You’ll never have abs either, sorry.
One way of peeling back the layers of physique dampening fluff is by entering a calorie deficit. All you need to do is find your daily energy expenditure, drop your kcals by a comfortable 10-15%, and watch the muscle cut through.
By feeding your body fewer calories than it burns in a day, you’ll tap into energy stored as fat. Over time this’ll mean an overall reduction in body fat until you eventually become lean. Then, once you start to notice definition at around 10-12%, it’s time to dig deep. When you finally hit the 8% benchmark your abs will be etched across your stomach like shadowy trenches of muscle. All the shredz, bro.
Here’s how to do it…
First, find your Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR) using this formula:
66 + (6.23 x weight in pounds) + (12.7 x height in inches) – (6.8 x age in years)
Then multiply it by your activity level:
- Sedentary (little or no exercise): BMR x 1.2
- Lightly active (light exercise/sports 1-3 days/week): BMR x 1.375
- Moderately active (moderate exercise/sports 3-5 days/week): BMR x 1.55
- Very active (hard exercise/sports 6-7 days a week): BMR x 1.725
- Extra active (very hard exercise/sports & physical job or 2x training): BMR x 1.9
Got it? Awesome – deduct 20% from your total to enter a deficit.[infobox]
Bro tip: Try to fill the bulk of your meals with lean protein and fibrous greens. They’re low in calories, but help a man feel mighty full.[/infobox]
2. Lift, lift, and lift some more
Long gone are the days of the treadmill. Today, we live in the iron age.
Previously most men were prescribed hours of trudging on the treadmill to lose weight. However, studies show that combining cardio with lifting weights is a much better route for fat loss . In fact, not only is it better for burning fat, but it’ll improve your overall physique too.
Another reason to lift is that building muscle actually boosts your metabolism. Because your body grows with added lean mass, it must work harder to energize it. The only way to do this is by burning through more calories even while resting. Awesome – right?
So, for a double-edged ab attack, check into the weight room ASAP. Here’s our 4-week weight loss workout plan and diet to get you started.[infobox]
Bro tip: To raise the intensity of your weightlifting workout take shorter rests[/infobox]
3. HIIT the ground running
One way of accelerating fat loss for a washboard midsection is HIIT training. Rather than rely on hours of pavement plodding, opt for high-intensity interval-based exercise instead.
Studies have shown HIIT training to be super successful in promoting fat loss in men . It’s hardcore, has a high-energy demand, and can even provide stimulus for muscle gains.
The best bit is you don’t even need a long time to fit a HIIT session in – making it immensely efficient for busy dudes.
We recommend a 10-minute battle rope Tabata blast to fight belly fat in no time. Simply go as hard as you can for 20 seconds, before resting for 10 seconds until you’ve hit eight complete rounds. Repeat the process one and a half times again until crushing a total of 10 minutes.[infobox]
Bro tip: Download a round timer to your smartphone to make keeping track of intervals easier[/infobox]
4. Eat more protein
One thing common for people who start to go on a diet is muscle loss. But fear not bro, we’ve got the answer. Eat more protein.
By upping your amino acid intake you’ll give your muscles all the building blocks they need to stay strong. So, whilst the fat melts away, your underlying lean mass is maintained, leaving behind hard, chiseled abs.
Plus, studies have shown a high-protein diet is one of the best for fat loss . This is because protein helps support both satiety (feelings of fullness) and muscle maintenance. 
When looking to up your protein game it’s important to opt for lean sources. This way you’ll get the most bang for your buck by eating maximum muscle fuel with minimal fat. Here are some of the best lean protein sources for shredded abs:
- Whey & Soy protein isolate powder
- Chicken breast
- Turkey mince
- Lean beef
Bro tip: Eat protein with every meal to ramp up your daily intake[/infobox]
5. Crush compound lifts
Compound lifts are exercises that use multiple joints and muscle groups in one move. For this reason alone, they’re absolutely brutal for burning through body fat. After all, the more muscle you use, the more energy you need, meaning calories are crushed at an alarming rate.
While the deadlift or power clean might not seem like obvious six pack material – you’d be surprised bro. Big multi-joint movements often requires the body to work synergistically, with a particular emphasis on a supporting core. In short, your abs and spinal erectors will get one hell of a workout.
Want to make the most from every lift? Go heavy, bro. Studies have shown that bouts of intense heavy lifting are a natural way to boost testosterone . And as lower levels of body fat are associated with higher T, a raise in androgen hormones can help your steely stomach cut through.
Bro, before you go, just one thing. Don’t forget to keep training those abs! While we’re here telling you to go big or go home with your lifts, still throw in ab accessory moves to get ‘em popping. If in doubt, give yourself one day a week to focus on your midsection or add abs to the end of each workout.
6. Cycle your carbs
Bro, if you wanna get peeled you’ve gotta keep your carbs in check. One way to do this is by learning how to cycle them.
While carbs shouldn’t be demonized, they can be the downfall for your ab goals. That’s because any calories they provide which you don’t use are likely to be stored away as fat for later.
It works like this – when you eat carbs your body digests them and starts to absorb their energy (calories). If you’re in a position to burn that energy, such as when working out, it’ll then be used as fuel.
However, say you’re sat at your desk and won’t be moving for a while, that energy is likely to be stored away. Thanks to millions of years of evolution, it’ll end up deposited in your fat stores. If you’ve got a sweet tooth for simple sugars, you put yourself at an even greater risk too. Try these low carb snacks for bodybuilders as craving killing replacements, bro.
The fix? Saving your carbohydrates for when you need them. Prioritize training times and first thing in the morning to ensure you’re energized for the day, while maybe leaving out pasta and potatoes from lunch. Fill your plate with plenty of fibrous vegetables and a bulk of protein instead and you’ll hardly miss ‘em.[infobox]
Bro tip: Keep your carbs complex to secure a slow release of energy throughout the day.[/infobox]
7. Boost your testosterone
Testosterone is without a doubt one of the most overlooked aspects of a man’s life. It’s what makes us alpha-males, separating the strong from the rest of the pack. So, if that’s true, why don’t we take care of it?
Two common traits of a man with low testosterone are decreased muscle mass and increased body fat. If you’re the sort of guy looking to craft a showstopping midsection, these side effects will fast become your two worst enemies. Forget about getting abs fast – it’ll be impossible to see them at all.
Don’t panic though, bro, as stress is a leading factor of plummeting T production. Instead, try these quick fixes to take your T sky-high today.
Firstly, lift heavy, hard, and often. Studies have shown bending the barbell to be a primal tool for raising T so grip and rip in the iron house, bro .
Secondly, sleep 7-8 hours per day. Not only does a lack of sleep leave you with no energy to crush a core workout, but it also messes up your hormones . An easy way to ensure a good night’s rest is by staying away from screens an hour before bed and sleeping in a cool, dark room.
Thirdly, try an all-natural testosterone boosting supplement. These are products filled with ingredients proven to support healthy testosterone production, especially when dosed correctly. We’ve reviewed the top 10 currently on the market over at our awards here.
Conclusion – Final lift for a shredded six pack
Stick with these seven secrets and you’ll be showing off a washboard midsection before you know it. All it’s gonna take is the hard work, dedication and desire to go where most men won’t.
Having steely abs rippling across your stomach isn’t a science. It’s simply a case of eating well, training right, and living even better. None of these secrets are actual magic formulas, bro. They’re all tried and tested habits of guys who’ve forged Godlike physiques.
For some bros, it’s gonna be easier to hit that 10-8% benchmark than others. Genetics do play a pivotal role in your natural body fat levels so it’s worthwhile finding what body type you are.
Ectomorphs will sail down to single digits faster than you can say shredded – while thicker endomorphs will need to play a longer game. Ultimately, if you’re consistent and don’t cheat, you’ll 100% crush your ab goals.
See you when you’re shredded, bro.
- Willis LH, et al. Effects of aerobic and/or resistance training on body mass and fat mass in overweight or obese adults.J Appl Physiol (1985). 2012
- Boutcher S. High-Intensity Intermittent Exercise and Fat Loss. J Obes. 2011
- Paddon-Jones D, et al. Protein, weight management, and satiety, The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Volume 87, Issue 5, 1 May 2008
- Westerterp-Plantenga M, et al. Dietary protein – its role in satiety, energetics, weight loss and health.British Journal of Nutrition. 2012
- Vingren J, et al. Testosterone Physiology in Resistance Exercise and Training.Sports Medicine. 2010