Todd McCullough (TMAC) is the founder of TMAC FITNESS. TMAC FITNESS’s mission is to assist in creating a culture that is conscious of the body and the world in which we live. Check out his mindbodygreen class, Total Body Workout: How to Strengthen Your Core, Tone Your Arms & Improve Your Flexibility.
Having a strong core is important for a lot of reasons. Solid abs support your back, make you more confident, and protect your internal organs. Oh—and they also look great.
Still, getting a strong set of abs isn't easy. Here's how you can make that happen:
1. Eat fat.
Controlling your waistline is often the result of keeping your insulin levels stable. Two things spike your insulin levels: carbohydrates and sugars. Take it from a guy who makes a living getting people to see their abs for often the first time: Eat fat. This will stabilize your insulin levels. My top three fats of choice are steak (grass-fed, of course!), olives (great snack), and avocados—I add them to my eggs, on top of chicken, and mix them in salads.
2. Do short, intense training with walks.
My experience has shown me that most folks work out two to three times a week and try to make up for their missed days with weekend marathon workouts. Not the way to go if you want abs. You need to sweat six days a week. For this to happen and work for your busy lifestyle, try doing short intense workouts (HIIT Training). To help keep your body in a fat-burning state add in walks throughout the day. A perfect example is to walk to and from lunch or go for a "walk and talk" meeting.
3. Drink tequila and wine.
I'm all about teaching my clients practical ways to live a healthy life. If you want real, practical solutions to have abs year-round and still have a social life, try this: Don't drink Sunday through Thursday. Trust me, chamomile tea will calm the nerves in the evening after a long day of work. On Friday and Saturday, limit yourself to one cocktail. My go-to is a tequila on the rocks with lime. A glass of wine will work fine as well. Beer will bloat you, and once you start adding mixers to your alcohol, you're drinking your calories and again spiking your insulin levels.
I know you wanted another secret ab exercise or some dumb infomercial product that the models have never seen until the day of the shoot. But have you ever noticed that models with great abs are always smiling? That's because modeling tightens your midsection (OK, so that really cheesy cheerleader twist they all do helps as well).
Now, to get really cheesy and deep, why do you really want abs? Somewhere in that twisted psyche of yours is the desire to be loved, and thanks to the Photoshopped images we see in magazines, we believe abs will make us more desirable. I am speaking directly to the ladies here: Do you know what I think is sexy? An awesome smile. A woman who smiles shows confidence. She shows inner joy. That is what I'm a sucker for. So please, no more Zoolander selfies.