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It’s no mystery that many of us would like to have a nice, chiselled six pack. We all know that one of the major keys to a six pack is to sacrifice the other popular forms of six packs that we often indulge in such as beer and donuts. But what about when it comes to training? Should you train your abs before or after your workout?

The core is a fundamental part of the body and impacts overall posture and strength. It is crucial when performing any exercise, to ensure that your core is engaged to conduct exercises safely and maintain good form. One way to do this is to imagine you are about to be punched in the stomach – hopefully no one in your pilates or aerobics class will throw any jabs, but bracing during is essential for stability and function.

Therefore, if your abs and core are fatigued from previous exercises, it can cause weakness on subsequent exercises and increase the risk of lower back injury – especially for big exercises such as deadlifts, squats, presses, pulls etc. So as a general rule of thumb, I’d suggest keeping your ab specific exercises to the later part of your workout. If you do decide to train abs beforehand, just make sure you can still complete all your weight training exercises safely without sacrificing good form.

However, it is important to remember there is a lot more that goes into building a ripped set of abs than just doing thousands of crunches. Things like nutrition, sprints, weight training, intervals, and walking will get you there far faster than just doing a bunch of ab workouts.