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How to Get Awesome Abs

www.ironmanmagazine.comQ: How can I make my abs look like those of the pros?

A: Abs are the one bodypart that a typical bodybuilder has the best chance of developing somewhere close to the standard of the pros. For other -bodyparts, where muscular size is the dominant characteristic, very few people have the freaky genetics required for huge development, but for abs, the dominant issue isn’t genetics.

Everyone has a particular ab formation that is unique to him or her. You may or may not have symmetrical abs. You may have a six-pack, a four-pack or even an eight-pack. You can’t change the shape of your abs, but you can change their degree of development, and you especially can change the amount of bodyfat that covers them.

Abs don’t need to be heavily developed to look impressive. Whatever development you have will look terrific provided you can see your abs. Even nonbodybuilders who are athletic and lean can have terrific abs.

[Are you over 35 and looking for health, muscle and the amazing anti-aging benefits of resistance training? Get the new e-book by Steve and Becky Holman, Old School, New Body. Read the Iron Man magazine review here.]

Do crunches to target your abs (rectus abdominis) primarily, and side bends or the rotary torso to work your oblique muscles (external and internal) primarily. Of course, crunches also involve your obliques, and the side bend and rotary torso also involve your abs. Having a very impressive midsection means well-developed and lean abs and obliques. Oblique development isn’t just visually impressive, but it also produces a more robust midsection and helps protect you from lower-back injury.

—Stuart McRobert


Editor’s note: Stuart McRobert’s first byline in IRON MAN appeared in 1981. He’s the author of the new 638-page opus on bodybuilding Build Muscle, Lose Fat, Look Great, available from Home Gym Warehouse (800) 447-0008 or

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