The key to unlocking those washboard abs is NOT doing crunches. I repeat, it’s NOT about crunches, side bends or leg raises. It’s using nutrition to lose the layer of fat that’s hiding those wonderful abdominal muscles that we all have. In fact, all the crunches, side bends and leg raises in the world won’t make that fat layer go away without a solid nutrition plan. Here are a few simple steps to unveiling your awesome abs:

·       Know your body’s needs. If you don’t know your body’s needs, it’s difficult to eat the right amount. (And most people don’t.) You can take a quick assessment to determine your daily calories needs at Click the Free Fitness Profile button on the right.

·       Eat the right amount. When it comes to getting lean, it’s all about eating the right number of calories for your body.  By eating fewer calories than you burn each day, you force your body to use that stored fat for fuel, allowing those abs to emerge. But don’t cut those calories too much, or your performance in the octagon and the gym will suffer. Your Free Fitness Profile will give you your daily calorie target for calories.

·       Use a high-performance shake. Every athlete needs the optimal blend of fuel to consistently perform at their best. The ideal pre and post workout snack is in liquid form for quick digestion and absorption. It contains 150-350 calories (depending on your size), about ¼ of your weight in grams from carbs, 10-25 grams of protein and 1-5 grams of fat.

·       Eat at the right times. Timing of your meals and snacks is critical to muscle repair and growth. Fueling up at the right times makes all the difference in the world. Space your meals at least 3-4 hours apart and be sure to fuel up properly before and after workouts. Research shows that having a high performance shake 10-40 minutes before and immediately after your workouts maximizes performance, recovery, muscle repair and results. If you train first thing in the morning, have your shake right when you wake up.

·       Choose super foods. Get the most of every calorie by eating foods that fill you up, fuel your workouts and nourish your body. Whole grains, lean protein, healthy fats, low/nonfat dairy, fruits and veggies are your best bet. At least half of your calories should come from carbs to fuel exercise and daily activity. Protein should take up at least ¼ of your calories and the rest from fat.

·        Hydrate properly. Unless your workouts are longer than an hour OR you haven’t eaten in the last 3-4 hours, you don’t need anything other than water during exercise. Too many liquid calories can prevent you from losing fat and revealing your abs. Otherwise, a sports drink with 4-8% carbohydrate will give you the fuel you need for longer workouts.

·       Take your daily multivitamin. No one eats perfectly all the time.  Use a quality multivitamin to fill the nutrient gaps in your diet.

Sample Menu for an Active 185 lb Male – 2700 calories (56% Carbs, 27% Protein, 17% Fat)


  • 1 medium whole wheat bagel
  • 1 egg and 1 egg white, cooked
  • 1 slice reduced fat cheese
  • 1 large orange
  • Water

Lunch/Pre-Training Meal (2 ½ -3 hrs before workout)

  • Subway Footlong Turkey Sandwich
  • Water

Pre-Training Snack (10-40 min before workout)

  • dotFIT Pre/Post Workout Shake (2 scoops)
  • 16 ounces of water

Post-Training Snack (right after workout)

  • dotFIT Pre/Post Workout Shake (2 scoops)
  • 16 ounces of water

After-Training Meal (within 1-2 hrs after workout)

  • Top Sirloin Steak, Grilled or Broiled, 6 ounces
  •  Wild or Brown Rice, 2 cups
  • Your favorite veggies, steamed, 1 cup
  • Your favorite fruit, 1 cup or large piece
  • Water

Evening Snack (anytime before bedtime)

  • Low-fat frozen yogurt, 1 cup
  • Fresh fruit for topping, 1/3 cup

What to Do if You Hit a Plateau

If or when you come to a plateau and your abs are not emerging, you need to make an adjustment to your food intake or activity level. You’ll have to eat less, move more or a combination of the two until you start shedding more body fat. Cut 100-300 calories from your intake and add more exercise or daily activities. Repeat the process as necessary and remember, you can’t spot reduce or control where fat leaves your body. By maintaining a calorie deficit over time, that is – burning more than you eat, fat will eventually leave from any difficult spot.




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