We all want to feel great, build muscle, and stay lean. Most of us also want to keep our midsection in check. Just about any guy trying to cut down on bodyfat and get in shape looks at his gut to see if it's evaporated even the tiniest bit during a grueling gym session. It’s only natural, since those coveted abdominals are considered centerpiece of any guy's physique.

But there's a catch. Endless amounts of abdominal exercises will have very little effect on your effort to trim your waistline. Spot-reducing is a myth: Just because you work a body part hard in the gym doesn't mean fat will fall off it. It simply won't happen. Instead, your overall nutritional intake will determine how lean you will become and how your body will look.

Moral of the story: A great diet and proper exercise are both critical components of improving overall health, athletic performance, and aesthetics. Working the rectus abdominus—the technical term for your six-pack muscles—is your ticket to a strong core and bigger muscles.