You ever go through a phase where you purposely stop training abs??

Discussion in 'Bodybuilding Forum' started by Demondosage, Sep 2, 2018.

  1. Demondosage

    Demondosage Member

    So I started thinking of how most guys get larger trunks/abs once they get into late 30's and beyond. I decided to take awhile off training them altogether and just focus on squeezing during other movements and dieting harder.

    At least for a little while to avoid an overly large trunk area. Anyone else ever do this from time to time?
  2. Ironlord

    Ironlord Member

    I haven't done a direct ab workout in years...and still have a visible six pack. I get lots of stimulation from heavy lifting - tons of squats, deads and OHP.

    But I do notice blockiness, more from deadlifts stimulating the obliques, than from age...
    My waist is still only 32 and I'm almost 41 yrs old...
  3. There is literally no reason to stop working them, you do more harm than good, to be honest.

    Studies have shown that the activation you get from exercises like squats, deadlifts and standing OHP is minimal (about ~10-15% on average as far as activation goes) and if you want to optimize them you need to hit them directly. [1], [2]

    From the top of my head if I remember correctly the MEV [minimum effective volume] is about 10 sets of direct ab work per week. You can split them throughout the week.

    If I were you I would pick 2 kinds of ab exercises, a hanging one and a simple weighted crunch.

    Don't forget that abs help support your spine as well and if you work them correctly they can boost your squat and several other exercises.
    Uttukuxul and StillMind like this.
  4. brutus79

    brutus79 Member

    My whole life has been ab workout free.
  5. Btcowboy

    Btcowboy Member

    I try and do something for them every day in the gym even if it's just a couple sets of weighted crunches. However if I am worse out from the workout or it is getting late I will skip them and not think twice about it
    SteakWellDonePls likes this.
  6. BigNattyDaddy

    BigNattyDaddy Member

    Did enough ab workouts back in the day that I should be set for life. Now I focus more on my diet than exercises, since diet plays a bigger part in revealing abs. Don't think I've ever seen the pros working them.
    Grandpa Gainz likes this.
  7. RodgerThat

    RodgerThat Member

    All bullshit. You linked a study with bosu balls and doing squats on them with 50% then stable ground with 50% and 75% and it basically says that being on the bosu ball doesn’t make much of a difference. Ahhh duh could have saved some money if you put 12 highly trained athletes and give them 50% weight they don’t require 100% concentration regardless of conditions. You can give me 50% of my 1rm and I’ll probably use about 10-15% too. Also where are you getting that 10 sets of direct ab work is required a week for MINIMUM EFFECTIVE VOLUME, ha such a fact is laughable because what if I do 10 sets of 1 rep for my abs and nothing else it won’t do anything. If you properly brace for posture all day walking sitting and don’t be lazy about it that in itself is enough to build abs with diet in accordance to muscle building but then you throw on top of that bracing using 2-3.5x body weight and having to control that woooo now we are talking bullit proof abs.

    Further point for anyone who’s interested, abs aren’t meant to roll your body forward in a crunch matter they are designed to resist such movements so train them for resistance not by squeezing the shit out of them repeatedly.
  8. K.
  9. insaiyan93

    insaiyan93 Member

    Yeah, it's called my entire life.

    Have you ever done direct an work? It's boring as fuck.

    I feel like bracing for heavy compound lifts is all you need to build a strong core, and I think just about any powerlifter would agree.
    Dw725 likes this.
  10. fodsod

    fodsod Member

    Other than close to a show I never work abs. I only do them later in prep to help the mind muscle link for better control and to bring out some details/hardness. Outside of that, they are present all year long and look pretty much the same thanks to heavy lifting.
  11. Eman

    Eman Member

    With MEV and other training landmarks you have to figure on a few rules like 8-20 reps set, training within 60-80% rm and I think like 6-9rpe.

    Abs are pretty much the only muscle group that have a 0 MEV, as far as I know.
  12. elitesales305

    elitesales305 Member

    i train em more for torso / gut control rather than hypertrophy..
    i mean its still a muscle right... to get em to grow you would have to go heavy and hard.. but who wants a thicker torso??
    Dw725 likes this.
  13. insaiyan93

    insaiyan93 Member

    I do, I associate a thicker torso with strength. You wouldnt build a house with a skinny spot in the middle.
  14. Demondosage

    Demondosage Member

    I associate a thicker torso with a larger sized pant waist and belt, Hahaha
    brutus79 likes this.
  15. insaiyan93

    insaiyan93 Member

    That is also true lol
  16. RodgerThat

    RodgerThat Member

    55gallon drum but shredded is my all time goal. The rounder I am but shredded the better I seem to bounce out of crashes and the easier my belt fits me. Ever looked at a lifting belt they are round! So for optimal performance I wish to be round
    Dw725, elitesales305 and insaiyan93 like this.

  17. So youre saying that its pointless to train abs? I know that having abs is all about diet, but can't you atleast make them pop more by working them?
  18. Footfkedurgirl

    Footfkedurgirl Junior Member

    Thank you meso for contributing to my any justification I have for not working out/hating abs. Literally hate abs. But I still hit them once a week so I don't feel lazy.
    insaiyan93 and brutus79 like this.
  19. brutus79

    brutus79 Member

    Yes and no
    If they are covered in fat it is a complete waste of time... it will just make your gut bigger. If you are already a low enough body fat it can define them somewhat... when powerlifting one fills their stomach with air and braces outward to resist a core bend during the lift... I always felt that's why my core was more round. Someone who does crunches or whatever all day seems to have a flatter stomach, but it isnt more or less developed muscle- its muscle trained to be a certain way- like posting a dogs ears.

    If you could build abs up there would be guys with bicep sized muscles on their stomachs. You only train them to rest a certain way.
    bama_barbell1014 likes this.
  20. Eman

    Eman Member

    No, not necessarily. If you're not doing squats, deadlift or any compound movement that you brace for... Then training abs directly is probably a good idea if done correctly.

    There are a few things I do believe in regarding abs...

    Learn how to brace for all lifts you do. Tighten your core and engage it as often as you can.

    Do squats, and do them right. Deadlifts too... But it's not always practical for everyone. Squats are a must, imo. (Or a version of them)

    Do hanging leg raises and get good at them. They are more than an ab isolation movement.

    Mindlessly doing a ton of crunches is a zero sum game.