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I am interested in gaining more definition in my stomach and chest area. I suppose I would like to work towards having a well defined sixpack, although that is not as important to me as gaining some more definition in general.

I'm generally considered skinny at just over 6 feet (183cm) in height and 175 lbs(~70kg) give or take. I'm not overweight at all, yet I also don't seem to have any definition.

What exercises can I start doing each day to improve this and for how long?

In what amount of time would I start to see results?

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4  
You might like reading this blog post, if only for inspiration –  Ivo Flipse Mar 8 '12 at 12:16

2 Answers 2

up vote 11 down vote accepted

I'm going to start out with the bottom line, then fill in the missing pieces:

A 6-pack has everything to do with the amount of body fat you have. Whether that 6-pack is impressive or not has to do with muscle mass.

The magic threshold you want to get to is under 10% body fat. The best, most tried and true method to deal with body fat is to get your diet in order. However, there are some caveats if you want to put on muscle mass as well. I recommend checking out Lean Gains, The Warrior Diet, or something of that approach to help you balance the two.

Now, in order to get muscle mass on your body you have to do some strength training. The best bang for your buck is going to be linear progression (increasing the weight you lift every time you go to the gym), until you max out the gains from that. I've written up a good primer on strength training that summarizes a lot of the info I learned when I was just starting out. In that primer is a link to three pretty solid beginner strength training programs.

Of the three, the one that would be most compatible with fat loss would be The Average F'n Program. Despite the name, it's got a couple features that will help you as you gain strength (and muscle) while trying to cut fat:

  • Only two main lifts per session and one accessory exercise. Keeps the training session short and within the optimal time to increase testosterone without increasing cortisol.
  • Lower session volume helps with recovery.

With both the AFP and Starting Strength protocols, it's best to find your 5 rep max (the heaviest you can lift 5 times). Now, for a beginner the definition of a 5 rep max is when form breaks down. If that means you can only lift the bar for overhead press, so be it. Check the ego at the door, because in a very short time you will be surpassing your current abilities.

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I would suggest to start doing some bodyweight routines and some abs and core exercises on a regular basis. But don't do them every day because you will be overdoing it. Do them 2 or 3 times a week for like 15 minutes.

I think with your bodytype you should see some results in a few weeks time because you don't have a whole lot of bodyfat covering your muscles right?

If you're absolutely new to doing any exercise, maybe start of with just flexing your abs throughout the day, let's say about 10 seconds for one rep. And then go on with what you were doing. Do another 10 seconds-rep after 10 to 15 minutes.

Just make sure you don't go to hard from the start. A good form is more important than a good number.

Good luck man!

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This would be a better answer if you listed those ab routines in this answer rather than linking to them. –  Kate Mar 30 '13 at 23:08
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@WorkoutChallenger, please refrain from excessive self-promotion. It is fine to link your own site, but please see the faq regarding promotion. –  Matt Chan Apr 5 '13 at 11:15
    
I'm removing the link from your answers. If your answers are good quality, people will check your profile to see if you have a website, and will visit your website as a result of great answers here, not as result of your personal links. Alternatively, StackExchange does sell advertising. –  Nathan Wheeler Apr 5 '13 at 18:01

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