What’s your motivation for coming to the gym? We often hear ‘I want abs’, and we hear that from both men and women. Many people hope to achieve their six pack through endless sit-ups, crunches or planks and are disappointed when nothing really changes.

The issue is body fat. Your abs won’t be on display until you reach a relatively low percentage of body fat. Whilst everyone is different and we all store our fat differently, it is believed that the ideal body fat range for visible abs is 14 – 20% for women and 6 to 13% for men. The reality is that the average UK middle aged man, has a body fat of 21-25% the average woman 33 – 38%

The science also suggests that you can’t spot reduce fat. You can’t just reduce fat from your abdomen or reduce those bingo wings. We will all lose fat in different places, at different rates. However, if you stay in a calorie deficit and exercise regularly, you will lose body fat in general and as a result, in your chosen area, just perhaps not immediately.

The best exercises to help reduce body fat include interval training on the treadmill, rower or ski erg. Compound exercises such as deadlifts and squats, and everyone’s favorite, burpees which will all help burn those calories!