When you look closely, six-packs aren’t all that pretty. In fact, they’re almost… ugly. There are a few that verge on artistic, with perfect contours and symmetry, but most look like badly cobbled roads. So why are we all – and I count myself in this group – so obsessed with having one?
If it’s because we think women will like us more, we should think again. In a number of studies, firm, strong glutes and muscular arms were found to appeal to women far more than welldefined abs. So if we’re doing it for the ladies in our lives, we’d be better off focusing our efforts elsewhere.
In part it might be about what a sixpack represents. It doesn’t come easy – you need to train hard and eat well to get it, and to maintain it you need to keep this up for, well, ever. So a six-pack says you’re someone who knows how to work hard and commit to something. It also gives the impression of functionality and athleticism (although having one doesn’t guarantee a high level of sporting performance).
But even if our desire for a washboard stomach is fuelled by misguided logic, the pursuit of abs is no bad thing – far from it. If, in your bid to get them, you follow a well-rounded programme and eat properly, you’re going to get healthier, stronger and more mobile. And that’s what this issue is all about – getting abs while also getting a lot fitter. We don’t do abs for abs’ sake.
On p64, four of the UK’s most ripped men reveal their six-pack secrets – you’ll be surprised how little time some of them spend training their abs to get their abs. We also give you a two-week plan (p137) packed with workouts that increase the size and strength of your abs and then scorch fat from your belly so everyone can see them. And your abs muscles need fuel to grow, so join us as we search for the UK’s best burger (p95) – and let us treat you to a free one with our exclusive GBK voucher on p81.
But before you do that, ask yourself this: what could be better than a sixpack? How about an impressive set of shoulders, big chest and back and powerful legs to go with them? In your hands you’re holding the blueprint for exactly that. NickHutchings, editor
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