The Adonis Belt - Getting V Shaped Abdominals
What Is The Adonis Belt?
The iliac furrow, also known as a Aphrodite's Saddle, Hercules' Girdles, athlete's girdle, Apollo's Belt, Adonis Belt, or V-cut Abs is a term for a part of the human anatomy. It refers to either one of two shallow grooves of the surface anatomy of the human abdomen running from the iliac crest (hip bone) to the pubis.
The term "iliac furrow" does not appear in any of the abstracts indexed by PubMed. It is not a currently defined term in Terminologia Anatomica, though it has been used as a formal anatomical term in the past. In modern usage, it is more common to discuss the surface anatomy in terms of nearby structures such as the inguinal ligament or iliac crest.
The term "iliac furrow" still often encountered when reading about art history, and the term "Apollo's belt" is often used by bodybuilders and their admirers. The expression "Adonis belt" is also encountered, though less common, from the sense of Adonis as any handsome young man (cf. the myth of Adonis).
The Adonis Belt is created by the Inguinal Ligament and the Transverses Abdominus (TVA).
The Inguinal Ligament is responsible for the V shaped lines but without training the TVA (Transverses Abdominus) these lines will not be as prominent.
Adonis Belt Myths (Do YOU Believe These?!)
When it comes to building muscle and losing fat there's a plethora of myths spread across the gyms, internet and via fitness magazines... it comes as no surprise that there are a number of myths when it comes to how to actually get a visible Adonis belt... take note of the below as if you're caught up on any of these mistakes you'll be merely wasting time and putting in effort while following a method that won't get you the result (V cut adonis belt!) you want.
Sit-ups will get your adonis belt showing
The sit-up still remains the 'go to ab exercise' when it comes to discussing how to get a shredded six pack, how to lose stubborn belly fat and how to get that v cut adonis belt that every guy desires. Here's the thing... the sit-up is not a particularly effective abdominal exercise - it pales in comparison to variations of the hanging leg raise which work the abdominal region better and are safer to before (sit-ups can result in lower back injury).
You can spend all of eternity performing sit-ups, but you won't reveal your adonis belt.
Certain foods will help your abs develop
If you're holding excess body fat you won't have a visible adonis belt, that's a no brainer.
However, there are no 'fat burning foods' that'll allow you to reveal your abs or adonis belt quicker than others.
In terms of fat loss via diet this comes down to HOW MUCH you're eating, not WHAT you're eating.
There's many magazines, articles and personal trainers still recommending celery, grapefruit and a plethora of other foods to burn fat to reveal the adonis belt... at the end of the day a caloric deficit is the key to burning fat, not a certain food.
You're either born with an adonis belt or you're not (blaming genetics)
Everyone has a TVA and therefore given the proper diet and training, everyone can reveal their adonis belt.
Genetics can determine factors such as the shape, size and symmetry of your abdominal region, but at the end of the day the genetics excuse is just a copout. Follow the proven strategies I detail below and you'll be able to reveal your adonis belt regardless of how bad of a hand you believe you've been dealt in terms of genetics. 0
Training abs every single day is the key to the adonis belt
You don't get abs (or a visible adonis belt) by training them relentlessly day in and day out.
Training abs primarily increases your core strength, the ability for your body to balance and stabilize weight, the #1 most important factor when it comes to getting a visible adonis belt is your body fat level. You can train abs for hours on end and you'll end up with a mighty strong core, however unless your body fat level is low enough (10% or less for guys, 15% or less for girls) your six pack, obliques and adonis belt will be covered by a layer of fat.
How To Develop A Visible Adonis Belt (Actionable Steps)
Developing an impressive adonis belt comes down to a few key factors, if you've got one but not the other you will not have a visible adonis belt. Don't neglect one or the other.
Lower Your Body Fat (Induce A Caloric Deficit)
Unless you've been blessed with great adonis belt genetics you're going to need to lower your body fat to 10% or below in order to properly reveal your adonis belt.
From my experience the area around your lower abdominals and hips is the last place to lose fat, so don't be surprised if you've got a visible 4 or 6 pack and your TVA still isn't protruding through... continue to lower your body fat and it will come.
The old saying ‘abs are made in the kitchen’ is very true. You can do as many crunches and hours of cardio as you want however unless you’re in a calorie deficit (this is assuming you’re not in the single digit body fat range) you’re never going to see your abdominal muscles.
Conventional ab exercises build the strength of the abdominal muscles, they don’t spot reduce fat. Fat cannot be spot reduced – it is burned at an event rate across the entire body (albeit, some individuals will hold fat in certain areas for longer than others due to genetics).
A calorie deficit is the act of consuming FEWER calories than your body requires to maintain its current condition. Not sure how to calculate your calories or enter a calorie deficit? Check out my guide here.
Practise Self Discipline (Be Consistent & Patient!)
Maintaining a calorie deficit and entering the single digit body fat range to reveal those shredded six pack abs is in my eyes, one of the ultimate tests of patience. You can’t cheat the system – you can’t go to Walmart and buy a pair of six pack abs, that’s what makes them so desirable – they’re rare because today everyone is after the quick fix, the instant gratification. Unfortunately getting abs takes time, I can’t give you an exact timeframe as this depends on your body type, your current body fat level and the size of the caloric deficit you place your body in.
“It takes as long as it takes” – Victor Pride
And it sure as hell is worth it.
Strengthen Your Transversus Abdominal (TVA)
Developed TVA muscles form the 'V' shape that is ever so desired. As I mentioned earlier, sit-ups are not the key to revealing that adonis belt and strengthening your TVA.
The TVA is primarily used for stabilization... squats, deadlifts, military press - these big heavy compound movements that require core strength to stabilize your position in relation to the weight will assist in building up your TVA.
That said, there are a number of isolation exercises I also recommend throwing into your workout routine to more directly target the TVA.
I recommend spending 10 minutes two or three times per week focusing on these isolation exercises.
Hanging Leg Raise
Adonis Belt Workout Samples
20 stomach vacuum holds
3 x 10 hanging leg raises
3 x 30 second planks
2 x 30 second side planks (per side)
5 stomach vacuum holds
5 hanging leg raises
Repeat for 10 rounds
10 x 30 second planks
10 x 30 second side planks (per side)
5 x 10 hanging leg raises