5 Best Exercises For A Flat Tummy

Or 5 ways to flatten your belly while becoming stronger at the same time!

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Best exercises for a flat tummy

There’s one undeniable fact about each and every one of us (speaking about fitness and appearance that is) – we all desire a flat stomach and abs of steel. Without exception, you know that!

But, once again T.N. comes to the rescue with this AWESOME post. Logically, today we’re gonna take a closer look at the best exercises for a flat tummy. Or belly. Or stomach. Or abdominals. Or simply that-middle-section-that-needs-thinning.

You should know by now that working out increases testosterone levels and that Arnold’s epic workout routine has been revealed. In this sense, It doesn’t take a genius to figure out that being physically active is rewarding, right?

We’re going to exploit that fact and dive into the 5 most effective ways of flattening your core. And no, forget about boring, run-of-the-mill crunches, etc. I’ll be showing you REAL exercises that make you sweat!

Let me start by addressing the truth about abs (visible ones to be precise):

Great abs are primarily made in the kitchen


Best exercises for a flat tummyNotice how I added the word “primarily”. Yep, that’s not coincidental guys – nutrition comes first when you even start thinking about getting a sexy six-pack (or a four pack, because it’s better than nothing).

You can train as much as you want, but if you continue to feast on greasy chicken wings from one of the fast (junk, actually) food chains, your results mediocre AT BEST! Even if you count your calories and eat less than what you’re used to – the damage has been done.

I’ll be incredibly kind to save you time here by mentioning my post about the 5 foods that destroy your testosterone. Do note that this applies to your health as well.

Sift through the list carefully, because poor eating habits have implications on your general well-being, not just your primary male hormone!

Anyways, let me give you an idea of what the main pillars of superb abs are when it comes to nutrition:

  • Eat clean – no junk, no overprocessed foods, no simple sugars/carbs etc.
  • Restrict calories – calorie deficit will make you lose fat, which in return helps your abs become more visible
  • Bump protein intake – consuming lesser calories could cannibalize your muscle mass. Make sure you consume enough protein so that you don’t look like a Christian Bale in The Machinist.

That’s as simple and straightforward as I could’ve put it. We don’t have to overcomplicate things fellows, getting your abs to show or just making your stomach flatter has never been rocket science!

Sure, you can always go full keto and reap the benefits if that’s what you want. Ketogenic diets basically make your body transition from using carbohydrates for energy, to fats. And as two plus two makes four, using fat cells for energy makes your body lose… FAT, voila!

“No amount of exercise will reshape your body without appropriate nutrition.”

– Tosca Reno
I absolutely had to include a quote, because hey, I like quotes! And also because this lady has a valid point. It applies to fitness in general, but even more so when it comes to your midsection. 
 
I don’t care – you can do thousands of crunches per day, but if you continue to munch on supersized burgers, friends, sodas, etc., no one will know that you have rock-solid abs because they’ll be covered under layers of lard!
Enough with foods and eatables now, let’s get to the core (pun intended) of this article!

The 5 exercises that will flatten your stomach!


Right off the bat, I want to warn you guys – no crunches were used in the making of this post! What does that mean? You won’t see me recommending abdominal crunches here, no chance!

It might sound bizarre or like outright lunacy, but let me elaborate why I’m not keen on doing them:

  • Crunches are an isolation movement
  • Crunches do NOT burn fat around your belly
  • Crunches are not all that challenging for most people
  • Crunches can be replaced by MUCH more efficient movements

What might these movements be? Glad you asked, let’s kick off!

1. Squats

Sample set and rep scheme:
3-5 sets x 5-6 reps

I can already sense all the WTFs and naysayers going berserk. How could squats be related to flattening your core and strengthening it? Sit tight and read on.

Squats are one of the most intense compound exercises, period. Yes, they are not an easy thing to do (if you go with a reasonable amount of weight) and yes you might end up puking if you push yourself too hard and/or go too heavy.

Still, think about how your body has to stabilize the weight and keep your torso tight and composed. Maybe, just perhaps, your core is the central stabilizer here? Take a look at the primary muscle groups involved in squats:

  • Glutes
  • Quads
  • Abdominals (abs)
  • Back

Listen, not only will your stomach tighten up, but you will develop great power. I’m not going to explain why and how this can benefit you, but let’s just mention that a stable, firm midsection will enhance every part of your life, including the sex one.

Oh, and perhaps the most important aspect to utilizing squats is – its effect on your metabolism plus the hormonal response following a demanding session of squatting.

This directly translates to you having an easier time getting rid of unwanted fat. What does that mean? Your abs of steel will not only be as strong as titanium, but they’ll also be visible so that you can cut diamonds on them!

2. Kettlebell Swings

Sample set and rep scheme:
10 sets x 20 reps

Looks similar to squats? Sure, there are similarities. The main difference perhaps would be that you won’t be able to swing huge amounts of weight, but the concept here is rather different as well.

Kettlebell swings are meant to combine strength and endurance training at the same time. Mainly, it increases your athletic performance and makes you more well-rounded.

The swinging motion of the little bomb (as I like to call kettlebells) will inevitably strengthen your core. The heavier kettlebells you go with, the more profound the effect will be. Just make sure you execute proper form, and your lower back will thank you for that.

Here are the muscle groups involved:

  • Glutes
  • Hamstrings
  • Hips
  • Abs
  • Lats
  • Pecs
  • Shoulders

Add the massive amounts of calories burned by doing kettlebell swings and your metabolism will skyrocket. Ding, ding – that means it’ll be easier for you to shed off some lard, yay!

3. Pull-ups

Sample set and rep scheme:
3-5 sets x 3-7 reps

Once again, I’m sure I’ll get in someone’s hair by including a ‘back’ exercise here. After all, pull-ups are only good for making your back wider, thicker and more defined, right?

That’s only half the story, guys! Come on, one of the most fantastic upper body exercises is much more than a mere ‘back’ movement. Before you become completely bewildered, take a look at the muscles involved in bringing your body up to the bar:

  • Back (upper back muscles, lats, etc.)
  • Abdominals
  • Shoulders (posterior deltoids)
  • Triceps
  • Biceps
  • Forearms

If you’ve ever done a single pull-up in your life, you’ll know just how much your abs are involved during the whole movement. Your core is your primary stabilizer and its what keeps your body stable when you’re hanging from the pull-up bar.

Don’t believe me? Try doing pull-ups by consciously excluding your core from the exercise, and you soon realize that you’re swinging like a piece of meat while battling with stability.

For this reason, it’s safe (bulletproof in fact) to conclude that doing pull-ups without engaging your abdominal muscles is the same as swiss cheese without holes – it just doesn’t exist!

4. The Plank

Sample set and rep scheme:
3 sets x 60 secs

Planks are convenient – you can do them everywhere as long as there’s solid ground under your feet. Planks are not so challenging to do – even a total beginner should be able to last at least a few seconds.

But above all, planks are a BRILLIANT exercise for your belly! Needless to say, the longer you stay in a plank position, the more your abs will burn until the pain becomes excruciating (in a good way, of course!).

First things first though, give me a moment to highlight the muscles groups involved:

  • Abdominals
  • Back
  • Chest
  • Shoulders
  • Glutes
  • Hamstrings

The greatest thing about planks is that it targets all the muscles in your midsection! Awesome news if you’re going for a sculpted and toned stomach.

5. The Ab Wheel (of pain)

Sample set and rep scheme:
3 sets x 5-12 reps

There’s a reason why the ab wheel is the last exercise in this list. And no, it’s not because this is not arguably the most amazing movement for your core. It’s because this is the most challenging one!

An untrained person would probably drop like a bag of sand before even completing a full repetition. And I’m talking about doing ab wheels in a kneeling position – doing standing ab wheels is reserved only for hardcore warriors.

Here’s the beauty of it though – if it’s THAT hard to pull off, it has got to be worth it, right? Do 3 sets of 12 reps for starters and tell me that your tiny (or not so much) belly ain’t scorching.

Not only will your midsection transform into solid steel, but you have to be kidding me – basic ab wheels go as cheap as 7.99$ on Amazon. Talk about a bargain!

 Check out all the different Ab Roller Wheels on Amazon

My ab roller wheel is a pretty basic one, and I’ve been using it for years already, so I don’t think you need to go for something too fancy and expensive.

Wrapping it up!


Before you jump into action and head over to the gym for some squats or you simply start doing planks and ab wheels at home, let me share my conclusive thoughts here.

Exercising on its own will NEVER get you to low body fat percentages so that your abs become visible. Sure, they’ll help (a ton, sometimes) and yes, being physically active will benefit you in an awful lot of ways, in general.

However, if your sole goal is to walk your new six pack around the beach, then you’ll need to start by facing your number one demon – food!

Only then will you be able to incorporate the excellent exercises that I shared with you guys into your lifestyle. And when you combine diet and exercise – boom, you’re onto something.

Before I wave goodbye, make SURE to drop a comment below with your thoughts about whether or not you’re a fan of the aforementioned exercises!

Yours truly,

Simon
Founder of Testosterone Nerd
E-mail: simon@testosteronerd.com

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Founder and author of Testosterone Nerd. A man with addiction, testosterone addiction. From captivating metaphors, humoristic approaches and scientifically-backed research, there's something for every man seeking optimal male hormone levels. Now give me five and rev up that T of yours!
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6 COMMENTS

  1. I like your post Simon. Too bad you did not tell how many reps of each exercise need to be done?
    Also I would like to know, how long does it take to do those 5 and how often per week?

    • Welcome aboard Gabriele!

      Thanks a bunch for bringing the rep/set subject up – I did manage to add a sample repetition and set system under each exercise, for convenience.

      How long to do them and how often? That’s a broad question and it really depends on your goals, genetics, physical status, fitness level, experience etc. But hey, let me give you an answer anyway:
      – The optimum duration of a workout should be around 45 minutes;
      – Squats can be done twice per week for maximum hormonal response and overall benefit, but if you go heavy then prepare to crawl instead of walk;
      – All the other exercises can and should be utilized at least a few times, every week.

      Cheers and God bless,
      Simon | Author of Testosterone Nerd

  2. Hey they are very good exercises that you put together. I personally like to do the plank because it is simple to do and very painful at the same time haha. I always do it at the end of my work out!
    I also wrote an article on how to lose a belly fat. Here is the link to my blog: https://flamingsolutions.com/blogs/health/how-do-i-lose-a-belly-fat
    Please feel free to check it out and leave a comment there. You are welcome to leave your link in my post as well 🙂

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