Plus why sometimes, aesthetic goals need to get put on the back burner.
Getting six-pack abs is one of the most common fitness goals across the board. Why are they so aspirational? Well, probably because they're pretty tough to get. That's also likely why Anna Victoria, fitness star and owner of her very own set of hard-earned abs, dedicated an entire Instagram post to the topic.
In her post, she got real about the fact that for most people (including herself!), getting visible abs means putting in a pretty significant amount of work. The main reason? Erm, genetics. (Yup, that's why it's so hard to sculpt a full six-pack.)
Let’s talk ABS ‼️ and what you need to do to get abs and SEE those abs. . Commonly asked question: Do you need to do ab exercises in order to get abs? The answer is no. You don’t NEED to do traditional ab focused workouts in order to get abs. If you know how to engage and use your core/abs properly during your strength workouts, you can build abs just by using and engaging your core during strength based moves alone . Aside from that, no matter how many traditional OR non-traditional ab workouts you do, whether you can see them or not depends on a few things. First is: genetics!! Do you have a naturally lean tummy? If so, A. Lucky you and B. you probably don’t need to do as much cardio in order to reveal those abs and you just need to focus on building core strength. (And eat properly to assist in building that muscle) . If you DON’T have a naturally lean tummy (like me) then that saying “abs are built in the gym and revealed in the kitchen” applies to you. Bummer, I know!! And in our case, often times belly fat is the last to go and the first to come back. It is what it is! The more you fight against it, the more you push back reaching your goals. So focusing on strength workouts, properly engaging your core, doing cardio (not more than strength training though) AND keeping your meals/macros in check is what needs to be at the top of your (fitness) priority list. . While as you girls know, I do not believe abs are everything, not one bit. But there also isn’t anything wrong with having physical goals *as long as you aren’t putting your mental and emotional health on the back burner* in order to achieve those goals. . This is just the surface of this week’s #fbgbodylove newsletter topic! I will be doing an insta live tomorrow at 8:30am PST to go over strengthening your core and more. Comment any questions you have on this topic below so I can answer them, and I’ll chat with you girls tomorrow morning!! #bodyloveapp www.annavictoria.com/bodyloveapp
While some people are lucky and naturally lean in their stomach, many carry extra fat in that area, she explains. "If you DON'T have a naturally lean tummy (like me), then that saying 'abs are built in the gym and revealed in the kitchen' applies to you," she wrote in her caption. "Bummer, I know! And in our case, often times belly fat is the last to go and the first to come back. It is what it is! The more you fight against it, the more you push back reaching your goals."
Her advice? "Focusing on strength workouts, properly engaging your core, doing cardio (not more than strength training though) AND keeping your meals/macros in check is what needs to be at the top of your (fitness) priority list."
Another common misconception she addresses is the idea that abs-focused workouts are necessary in order to get the chiseled midsection of your dreams. (Case in point: These total-body moves that engage your core.)
Who crushed their workout today?! Girls I wanna see a show of hands! And if you haven’t made it to the gym yet... the day isn’t over! I did Legs + Glutes this morning and then I fiiiinally roped @luca.ferretti17 into doing yoga with me!! He pretended to hate it but he actually enjoyed it. How many of you do yoga? How often? Do you strength train AND do yoga? So many questions . P.S. Tomorrow I’m doing an insta takeover at @triumphlingerie! I’ll be sharing my favorite cardio workout, my favorite meals and more! Follow and join me tomorrow! Wearing the Triaction Hybrid Lite sports bra here #movedontbounce #triumphlingerie #teamtriaction #bodylovebabes www.annavictoria.com/bodyloveapp
"You don't NEED to do traditional ab-focused workouts in order to get abs," she wrote. "If you know how to engage and use your core/abs properly during your strength workouts, you can build abs just by using and engaging your core during strength-based moves alone." (Heads up: Here's why core strength is so important.)
But she doesn't just leave it at that. Being a body-positivity advocate (here's her message to anyone who says they "prefer" her body to look a certain way), she is also quick to acknowledge that looks aren't the only thing that matters. "As you girls know, I do not believe abs are everything, not one bit. But there also isn't anything wrong with having physical goals *as long as you aren't putting your mental and emotional health on the back burner* in order to achieve those goals."
In other words, it's possible to love your body and want to change it at the same time, but having abs isn't everything, especially if watching what you eat and never skipping a workout makes you feel totally miserable. Meeting your goals is fun, but enjoying your food and your sweat sessions pressure-free? That's way better.
Because our bodies are badass and feeling strong, healthy, and confident is for everyone! Help us spread the body love and be a part of our #LoveMyShape body confidence movement: Post a photo or video on social sharing why you love your shape. And check out Movemeant Foundation, our partner in empowering women and girls to be body positive.