Community Discussion Post – Policy
Posted In: Workout – 02/26/2019
Posted By User: 4FR Mike
My Post #10 – Online Q&A – For people with six pack abs, do you maintain it year round…?
Please note that this is a casual, unedited post in the community, not an edited article and this is not advice for you.
I recently read an online question that read, “For people with six pack abs, do you maintain it year round or for certain seasons?“
This is how I would answer this question. Yes, I have much more defined abs in the summer and a little less defined abs in the winter. However, I have visible abs all year round, without suffering, and I have for more or less my entire adult life. In winter my abs are a little less defined as I choose to use winter as a time to add a little more muscle and get a little stronger so I bump up my calorie intake a little bit. I do this because:
a) I enjoy the change and seeing progress in one way or another.
b) I enjoy the challenge of getting stronger or a little more muscle even as I get older.
c) I think there can be benefits to rotating between a small calorie deficit and surplus.
d) I enjoy a bit bigger “calorie budget” when I am trying to add muscle.
I also read in the online reply that those who keep abs all year round ‘suffer’ and usually only do it for a job. This may be the case for some people but I will say that it has not been the case for me over the past 26 years. I don’t feel like I suffer at all to keep abs visible. I don’t do a bunch more cardio or eliminate certain foods that I feel I can not eat. Instead, when I try to lean up to show my abs more in the summer I do almost everything exactly the same except I drop my calorie budget a bit. That really isn’t that hard to do when you already track your food carefully. In fact, deciding to lean out or build some muscle feels more like a small mental decision than a guessing game or difficult chore to complete. I really honestly can not say that I suffered and that I have been miserable to get or keep visible abs at age 21 or 41.
When I drop my caloric intake to a small calorie deficit I go from feeling quite satisfied to just satisfied. If I start to feel a little hungry after several days in a row I may have a day where I eat more to feel full again. A consistent, small calorie deficit is important and when I am lean enough I just eat enough calories to maintain my weight.
So is this magic? No.
The keys for me are that I track my food carefully so that I know where my small calorie deficit is, I don’t have a lot of big disastrous eating days, I don’t deprive myself, I lift weights to build and keep my muscle and I’m extremely consistent… to put it a little more simply, I am really good at all four of the 4 Fitness Rules.
When replying please be kind, respectful, positive, supportive and helpful! Community Policy. 🙂