How to Get Flat Abs Fast Without Doing Crunches

In every gym around the world, at any given time, you can see men and women sweating it out with their backs on a mat doing crunches. The trouble is that many of them have very little to show for it. Despite the hours many people spend in doing sit-ups in the hopes of getting flat abs, the dream remains elusive.

If crunches aren’t the answer, than what is? Can you get flat abs without doing crunches?

This may come as a shock to you but the answer is a resounding Yes!

The reason is that in order to get flat abs the most important thing is to lose your excess belly fat, not to build your abs muscles. Sure, strengthening your abs is important not only for appearance’s sake but also for your health. However, if you’re really serious about getting flat abs, you need to spend your time burning off belly fat, and crunches aren’t the way.

The truth is that belly crunches are a low intensity exercise which doesn’t really strain the abs muscles all that much. Why do you think even unfit people can do 50-100 crunches?

To burn belly fat you must look past your abs muscles and at your body as a whole. You either burn fat from all over your body or none at all. Therefore, you need to workout in a way which truly exerts your entire body and not just your abs. It doesn’t matter if you burn fat by doing leg exercises or stomach exercises. You will lose belly fat in the same way.

That’s why you don’t need crunches to get a flat belly. What you do need is to spend your workout time doing hard, strenuous workouts (within reason, of course). If you’re not sweating, it means that you’re not really pushing your body to burn fat. And let’s face it, when was the last time you sweated while doing crunches?

Get off the mat and hit the free weights or the treadmill. You will be much closer to having your dream abs than with any crunches.

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Are Ab Crunches A Big Fat Waste Of Time?

Ab crunches have somehow come to be “the” exercise for getting rid of abdominal fat. They are touted as being an excellent exercise for bringing out your abdominals, and have been used extensively for many decades.

But what if everyone has been wrong all this time?

We’ve already found out that traditional cardio isn’t what it’s cracked up to be, and we’re starting to realize that the same may be true for ab crunches.

So why are ab crunches ineffective?

The reason ab crunches are ineffective is because they are isolating your abdominal muscles. Without properly strengthening your lower back to match the strength of your stomach, you’re going to end up with a lower back that’s in pain half the time!

Another reason ab crunches are ineffective is people have a preconceived notion that the more they do, the better results they will get.

But nothing is further from the truth. Once you get past 15 or so reps you’re only building endurance, not muscle definition.

Yet a third reason that crunches (and any other ab exercise really) aren’t as great as they’re made out to be is because what you eat has to do with about 80% of how you look.

You can do 5 billion crunches a day but if you aren’t eating correctly, you won’t lose weight and getting rid of abdominal fat is going to be impossible.

I’ll be frank with you. Probably about 90% of the people you talk to about health are going to be completely and utterly wrong in most of the things they talk about.

Why do you think over 65% of Americans are overweight? Because they’re getting advice from their overweight friends!

There are many other exercises that blow ab crunches out of the water in almost every way, and you need to realize that nutrition, not exercise, is going to give you the best results for getting rid of abdominal fat as well as everywhere else on your body.

If you want to lose weight, it’s imperative that you use a little of your hard earned cash to learn how to truly diet and exercise correctly.

There’s simply no other way around it.

Stop doing ab crunches and start learning about the real exercises you need and the right foods you need from the true experts.

Crunch the Habit of Doing Crunch After Crunch

Your other exercises are typically in the range of 8-15 reps. So what in the world makes you think that doing crunch after crunch, after crunch, after crunch will have any effect?

If something at the gym takes you hundreds of reps in order to feel even a minuscule burn, you’re doing it wrong.

I don’t know how crunches became so popular. I think people like them because they’re easy to do, and because the stomach area is the number one problem area for most people. But you’re not going to get six-pack abs from doing thousands of crunches. Crunches do little to strengthen or tighten your core. Plus, they really only hit the top half of your abs, leaving your lower abs neglected. You’re wasting your time and effort.

There are much better ab exercises. Here are three of our favorites:

Roman chair

Most gyms have this piece of equipment. It’s the chair with armrests but no seat to sit on. To complete one rep, you start with your legs straight below you and pull your knees up to your chest with your abs. For a more advanced exercise, keep your legs straight and extend them straight out in front of you. Try to finish with your legs slightly past parallel with the ground, and try to hold your legs in the final position if you can for an additional burn.

The key to this exercise is to not swing your legs. Momentum is the ultimate results killer. Try to go slower if you feel the tendency to swing your body. Bring your legs down slowly when returning to the starting position after each rep and focus on using the lower part of your abs to get them past horizontal.

Try to do sets of 15-20 with your legs fully extended, if possible.

Stability ball sit-ups

These are excellent for your abs and the only other exercise I do for my abs besides the Roman chair. Most gyms have these balls in various sizes. Grab one of the larger ones and sit on it such that the arch of your lower back rests along the curvature of the ball. Extend downwards as far as you can comfortably go for the starting position, and contract your abs and obliques to thrust your chest as high as possible. Go up slowly upwards and slowly back down. Remember, this is a sit-up, not a crunch.

By using the stability ball, you really have to focus on your core to keep yourself balanced during each sit-up. Try to also do sets of 15-20 reps of these.


Sprinting is easily my favorite ab exercise. The process of driving your knees explosively forward as you sprint will work your abs and obliques more intensely than any other exercise. I can’t remember the last time I did a sprint workout and wasn’t sore all around my midsection.

Not to mention, a regular sprinting regimen like the one used in EpicFit20’s Premium Membership will help shed fat from the stomach and oblique area, making the ab muscles look even better.