6 pack abs do NOT equal great physical fitness
6 pack abs do NOT equal great physical fitness

This post is about how 6 pack abs do NOT equal great physical fitness.

To get six pack abs the only thing you need is low body fat around your abdominal muscles. This is where women have the advantage in the world of six-packdom. However, in general, since women store fat around their hips thighs and ass, a six pack on a woman is not the same as a six pack on a man.

6 pack abs do NOT equal great physical fitness

Since the perception of fitness and what most people are told about fitness comes from TV, magazines and print, which are mainly controlled by men, then what most of you have “learned” about fitness and what is widely accepted in Western culture as great physical fitness is the effervescent six pack abs that people see in magazines such as Men’s Health, Women’s Health or some other fitness publication is simply not true.

Six Pack Abs and Women

Girls, the women you see in magazines standing at ¾ view are not what they seem to be. While some of them ARE in great physical condition, most of them are not.  In order to get casted to actually be on the cover of a magazine, you have to be either, A) a celebrity, B) a fitness model/fashion model, or C) a professional athlete. All of those girls represent less than 1% of the entire world’s female population. Furthermore, while magazines tell you what you want to read “How to fit in the perfect jean, in 15 minutes a day” or “Michelle Obama’s biceps today” or “The unknown fat-blocker that you are missing at the grocery store,” what the magazines fail to tell you is the other side of the coin in that most of the fitness or fashion models of the world suffer from a condition called “Amenorrhea.” Amenorrhea (reduced estrogen) is when a woman of child bearing ages loses her menstrual period. This happens usually during pregnancy, when a woman is breastfeeding, or when a woman has a very low body fat and cannot support the birth of a child. So guess where most of these women come from?…Yep, Celebrity’s, Fitness/Fashion models, Professional Athletes, and with most women when they either don’t eat enough food to support a newborn baby or eat too much (too much body fat) to support a newborn baby. In extreme cases where amenorrhea lasts more than six months, it is then called Hypothalamic Amenorrhea (HA).

So now you are thinking “Great” put a check mark in the Athlete box for me. NO, there is a study over in the UK that links Amenorrhea with increased osteoporosis and uterine cancer in later life. There are even newer studies that link the condition with elevated blood fat and LDL (low-density lipoprotein) Cholesterol – the bad cholesterol, which may lead to a higher risk of coronary artery disease. I am not a doctor but I don’t think 15 minutes of fame is worth osteoporosis and uterine cancer, and even if the study is not 100% accurate, I believe the risk is far higher than the reward.

Six Pack Abs and Men

In general, the only types of guys who are capable of maintaining six pack abs for any extended period of time are Ectomorphs and Mesomorphs. If you are an endomorph, generally a six pack is probably not going to happen. Now I know that we live in a “new and improved” society that supports the sort of thinking that if you want it you can get it. But that’s just not the truth. I may think and be told that I too, as an Ectomorph (upperbody), with enough hard work, will be able to Bench Press 500 pounds like my cousin Andre, instead of competing in the Boston Marathon. I would be climbing Jacob’s ladder highly unlikely to ever reach my goal, and even if I did maintain that goal, it would be more trouble than it’s worth. Endomorphs are more suited for carrying baby cows on their backs and lifting big ass boulders than they are trying to look like NFL player Terrell Owens.

6 pack abs do NOT equal great physical fitness

The other part of the myth of the six pack abs is that no amount of sit-ups, ab roller machines, or crunches will magically make you have the six or eight pack abs. Abs are ultimately made in the kitchen and not in the gym. Want proof? Look at most of the prisoners of America who work out. Outrageous bodies and they are eating the government mandated 3 meals per day with the least nutritious food imaginable for a first world nation. Most have six packs all day long, and eat bags of Doritos in their cells at night. It is unlikely that they are eating the latest Ultra Deluxe 100% Whey Protein from the nearest nutrition store, nor do they have the latest “crunch, crunch, crunch your way to a six pack in just 3 weeks” that they bought off TV when they came home drunk from the club. Most prisoners’ health is absolutely atrocious because their nutrition is atrocious, even though they usually have best six pack you have ever seen in your life.

So, in conclusion, do not think that just because a person has a six pack that it automatically means they have great physical fitness. While for some it does mean that, for most, especially women, there are caveats that will make the journey to what you have been told to *want* a lot hard to reach and even harder to keep, and it just may not be what you expected once you get there.

This concludes my post on how 6 pack abs do NOT equal great physical fitness.


Charles Lloyd
Charles Lloyd

Self processed fitness missionary and author of most of the ridiculous fitness articles written on Charles Lloyd Fitness.com. I am not really a writer, but a workout fiend who happens to have a blog. The single mission of this website is very simple: Get You In Shape. I have been blessed with the gift of good health and want to share it with you. Join Me.

    2 replies to "6 pack abs do NOT equal great physical fitness"

    • seo

      Fantastic site you have here but I was curious about if you knew of any user discussion forums that cover the same topics talked about here? I’d really like to be a part of community where I can get opinions from other experienced individuals that share the same interest. If you have any recommendations, please let me know. Appreciate it!

    • You are quite welcome Dan!!

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