I am working out a lot, but I still can’t see my abs! What am I doing wrong?!

This is the most popular question for over a decade that people ask me, and I still can hear it a lot of these days, so I felt the need to write something about this problem.

It’s nothing like “you should change your diet” and trying to be a nutritionist, or “you should do more steady cardio” because it doesn’t have effect enough to be the solution, or “you should do this sit-up program”…

I will try to explain how to ATTACK AND SOLVE YOUR PROBLEMS to finally achieve your six pack abs in the same way I did.

Even though I am into the gym and outdoor training for more than a decade, I also experienced different problems with my workout routines, diet plans, training philosophies etc… I always had a muscular upper body, big shoulders, biceps, back, lats, chests.. almost everything that makes your body achieve a sexy V look. Still, I was struggling to have a six pack abs no matter how hard I was working out!

I begged for advice and “experts” would tell me:

1) No carbs diet! So, I was starving my body and my muscles and walking like a zombie with energy barely to talk, let alone to do a good workout. No progress.

2) Some people would tell me: do this kind of sit-ups and do 100’s of them! I was literally killing myself doing thousands of crunches. Again, without progress.

3) Others would be like: Do more cardio man! So, I ran so much that I could easily do a half-marathon. No progress, no progress, no progress whatever advice they gave me! 
I was desperate! Everything they said seemed like it’s not working for me!

But what I couldn’t figure out is that all of this was a learning process.

Now, what I did that led me to change is — I started LISTENING TO NOBODY ELSE BUT MY OWN BODY! Each body is unique in its own way and that is why all of the above mentioned tips don’t count!

From my failures I learned what is good for my body, how it reacts on different situations and just implement that into my life in general, what is maybe even more important than the “ultimate goal of having six pack abs!”

“NO CARBS DIET, TO BE LEANER” kind of thing

As I said before, I tried different kind of diets but none of them would help. Sometimes I was going so far that I was starving without a carb a day and barely have enough energy to walk (that can happen when you are running low or without carbs because, carbs = energy)

The very first thing I did is, I eliminated bread from my diet. From one small adjustment I made, I saw enormous impact. Bloating! I didn’t noticed that, but I was bloated all the time! I thought I had a big stomach and fat around it, actually, I am gluten sensitive! When I realized that, I ate only gluten free food and my stomach finally become flat. Easy as that. Ok, I lost a big swollen stomach but, still couldn’t see my abs.

“DO THIS SIT-UP PROGRAM” kind of thing

I realised that when I did a lot of sit-ups — I felt my abs were burning, but besides that nothing else would change. Then I CHANGED THE WAY of working out my abs! I started doing dragon flags, hanging leg raises, oblique raises, windmills, planks with weights on my back and all kind of this core workouts that aren’t just usual sit-ups! After just a few weeks, I felt how my entire core is strengthening, not just the abs! I could feel that my core is stronger and that helped me improve in different exercises.

When you see or feel any kind of improvement, motivation starts building up and you are willing to put some extra effort — and by effort I don’t mean that you have to work harder, but to work smarter!

Now, there was only “DO MORE CARDIO, MAN!” to tackle

And I did! But for me personally, it was so boring and looong and because of that I couldn’t stick to it long enough. I prefer more intense but shorter training, when my heart rate goes up and where I can also build some muscles. So, I started with some kind of HIIT (high intensity interval training). My long runs became sprints, my cycling became 100 push ups — pull ups — leg raises; my hikes became my 100 kg squats — burpees — rope climbs AMRAP (as many rounds as possible). That was the way I lost much more calories than with steady cardio, I increased my metabolism, stimulated my testosterone which reflected in building more muscles and with more muscles you gain, more calories you burn!

Yes, I am aware that I didn’t give you the prescribed formula nor a program for six pack abs because things like that doesn’t exist! Those are just programs made up from people creative enough to sell them to you and you think they are the best because they work for those people!

Don’t get me wrong! I don’t want to say don’t try these programs! You should definitely try them, you should experiment! But what I want to say here is — learn what is working for you!!! That is the main massage I’d like to portray in this blog post.

What I hope I gave you is the best possible advice — LISTEN TO YOUR BODY! Each body is unique in its own way and works in its own way! So, basically this is a guide that shows how should you tackle some key things (how I did that) in order to have a six pack abs regarding your 1)DIET 2)WORKOUT 3)CARDIO.

Try new things, experiment, fail, try more… you will have ups and downs but you have to listen to your body and eventually you will succeed no matter which part of the body you are focusing on!