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Do Crossfitters have big bellies? Will CrossFit burn belly fat? Can CrossFit get you a six pack?

Do Crossfitters have big bellies? Will CrossFit burn belly fat? Can CrossFit get you a six pack?

Nov 22, 2021

CrossFit is a high-intensity form of exercise that has grown significantly in popularity over recent years, and with good reason too. But many people are still unsure as to whether or not it is for them. Common questions that people ask is: “Why do Crossfitters have big bellies?” Will CrossFit burn belly fat?” and “Can CrossFit get you a six pack?” 

If you’ve been pondering any of those questions, then this is the article for you. We are going to take a look at what CrossFit does to the body over time, and how it can help to transform both your physique, and your life. 

Why do Crossfitters have big bellies?

So, why do Crossfitters have big bellies? For one thing, they don’t have “big bellies” in the sense that you might imagine. To me, a big belly is a Father Christmas kinda gut from eating too many minced pies. A Crossfitter on the other hand, has a different type of belly entirely. 

Fact is, CrossFit and functional fitness athletes have rather solid and impressive physiques. When you shred all year round, you become incredibly strong over time. In addition to having large arms, big quads, and thick backs, they also have some rather striking midsections as well! 

The protruding abs that you see on dedicated Crossfitters are affectionately referred to as “turtle shell abs”. The name refers to the belly of turtles which (despite their slow and lazy nature), look rather striking and impressive. 

What are turtle shell abs? 

On athletes who take part in regular CrossFit, turtle shell abs are typically characterised by a large and protruding six-pack (aka rectus abdominis if you wanna get all fancy). 

The overly-developed stomach muscles are framed by obliques, which creates a “block-like” midsection. This creates a defined line from the arm pits, through to the hips. 

It is clear that CrossFit can lead to having huge abs as pretty much every single elite CrossFit athlete who has been working extra hard in this form of high-intensity workout, all have massive rectus abdominis and oblique muscles, which gives them the appearance of almost super-human athletes that can carry exceptionally heavy loads. 

Will CrossFit burn belly fat?

CrossFit is widely known for helping people to lose weight and build muscle, however, many people still ask the question: “Will CrossFit burn belly fat?” 

The answer is yes. However, even though CrossFit can indeed help you to lose belly fat (as you burn a high number of calories during such a high-intensity workout), reducing belly fat efficiently, ultimately comes down to your nutrition—aka, your diet. 

Simply put, there is no way for one to out-exercise a poor diet. If you want to lose your belly fat and successfully burn it off, then you need to start in the kitchen. 

Losing belly fat means that you must aim to decrease your overall body-fat percentage. Again, this can be done by watching what you eat, enjoying whole foods, and avoiding junk food as much as possible. 

A solid CrossFit routine will definitely help you to lose weight. With a mixed variety of aerobic exercises, strength training, and high-intensity interval routines, you will find that CrossFit is very effective at burning your belly fat. 

In fact, the average CrossFitter can burn around 2,700 calories per week if they commit to some five hours and fifteen minutes of exercise. This is a huge amount and can lead to an impressive weight loss. 

However, if this is the road you want to go down, it’s time to throw out the bathroom scales and ignore your weight. It is likely that you will become slimmer without the number on your scales changing, and this can be off-putting for people who are focused on losing weight. 

The point is, you can remain the same weight, whilst looking more toned and fit, and feeling stronger and more confident in your appearance. Forget about the numbers! 

And again, you really need to watch what you eat. 80% of weight loss starts in the kitchen. The other 20% comes down to exercise. 

Can CrossFit get you a six pack?

Another common question that people want to know the answer to is: “Can CrossFit get you a six pack?” The answer is 100% yes! However, don’t be fooled into thinking it’s easy. Or that it is something that will happen overnight. 

CrossFit is a lifestyle and one that requires commitment and consistency in order to experience results. If you join a quality CrossFit gym and dedicate yourself to three of more sessions a week, maintain a balanced diet, and consider it an on-going process, after three to six months, you will really start to notice your body shape evolve. 

And, don’t panic if you find the prospect of a balanced diet daunting. Remember, you don’t have to give up junk food entirely! You can still enjoy the occasional cheat day and indulge in your favourite snacks. The key-word is “balanced”. All that means is; you’ve got to make sure that the amount of junk food you eat compared to healthy whole foods is comparatively low. 

What you’ll find after committing to a healthier diet and lifestyle is that life is all the more enjoyable when you have more energy from eating “good mood food”. 

But yes, you can get a six pack through CrossFit. When pushing your body further with AMRAP and taking your fitness to new heights, you’d be surprised by what you can achieve with your physique!

What’s AMRAP in CrossFit? – Follow the link to find out more! 


And there we have it! Yes, crossfitters get bigger bellies but not in the way that you’d think. They grow protruding abs from having a stronger core. And, if you work hard enough, coupled with a cleaner diet, then you too can have washboard abs and a six pack as well!  

If you are interested in this way of life and wish to take your fitness to the next level, then find yourself a reputable CrossFit gym to join. Somewhere you can fit right into a thriving community and get all of the guidance and support you need to help you along your way.