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How low do you need to go? Body fat for a six pack.

Results Typical at 24kt Fitness Studio. How low of a body fat percentage does it take to start seeing the coveted six-pack abs?

Every individual is going to vary. Just because individuals have similar body fat percentage numbers, that does not necessarily mean that it is deposited in the same place.

There are 2 basic body types, the apple and the pear. For those that are not familiar with these terms, it refers to the ratio of fat deposited on the abdomen and the hips. 

The more fat deposited on the abdomen is considered the apple body type. The more fat deposited on the hips are considered the pear body type. The apple body type is at greater risk for disease over the pear body type. For this reason, the waist to hip ratio has been used as an indicator for at risk individuals.

That being said, saying it takes everyone the same body fat percentage to reach visible abdominal muscles does not sound reasonable. I have always monitored my body fat percentage, usually ranging from about 12.5% to 17% over the years of inconsistent training due to life getting in the way.

Determined to get the elusive six pack, I decided to make one of my own training goals to be weight loss. Over the years I did not consciously attempt to cut calories. I just performed resistance training and aerobic training for gains and managed to keep my body fat within the standard norms. I have been using My Fitness Pal, a free mobile and online application for tracking food and activity, for the passed 4 years. I recommend its use to all my clients. I has helped many of them lose the weight that they desired and helped them maintain healthy eating and activity habits.

Starting 3 months ago, I changed the setting in the app for weight loss. I chose to go with only half a pound a week as my weight loss goal so that I could maintain as much energy as possible for my high intensity training sessions. Starting at 163 pounds and 15.3% body fat, BMI 25.7; I began my journey. Yesterday, at the three month mark, I took a real look in the mirror for the first time and you can see the results that I saw. I am currently at 148 pounds and 12.1% body fat, BMI 23.2.  Apparently that last 0.5% is what really did the trick! 

My current baseline caloric intake goal is 1750 plus activity. I monitor all my activity with a heart rate monitor for extra tracking accuracy, making each days intake variable depending on the amount and type of activity. I am currently using the ACSM suggested sports diet of 60/25/15 carbs/fats/protein and perform about 50-55 minutes of training at 75%MHR six days a week. I also retested my VO2max and am currently at about 59.26mL/kg/min using the Ebbling Sub-maximal treadmill test.

If anyone else would like to experience these results contact Jay@24ktfitness.com and start working towards the new you today!

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