Louis Smith talks preparing for the Olympics and how he plans to celebrate if he wins

Julie Delahaye

Louis Smith MBE has an exciting year ahead of him, with the Rio de Janeiro Olympics just a few months away. All eyes will be on the gymnast following his success at the 2012 London competition where he picked up the bronze medal at the men's artistic team all-round event.

We caught up with the sportsman, who recently starred in a fitness video on how to exercise with your pets, to find out how he would celebrate a gold medal win, and get some of his biggest fitness tips…

Louis and girlfriend Lucy Mecklenburgh have opened up about their relationship exclusively in this week's HELLO! magazine, on sale now in all good newsagents and available to download on iPad, android, kindle fire and more formats. Or subscribe today to make sure you don't miss an issue!

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Louis Smith won a bronze medal at the 2012 Olympics in London

"If I won an Olympic gold medal, my first thing I'd want to do is see my mum and my coach," he told HELLO! Online exclusively. "If they're back home, I'd ring or FaceTime them. Once I'd done all the pleasantries, thanked all the people I needed to thank, done all the interviews and done all my drug tests, I'd get home, shower, put a shirt and jeans on and then I'd go out and party."

Having recently returned from a romantic getaway with girlfriend Lucy Mecklenburgh to New York, the 26-year-old is now looking at months of intense training.

"My workouts are quite crazy because I spend most of my time in a gymnastics gym," he explained. "I do three hour long sessions. The first hour I work on fitness and muscle anaerobics – basically I make my muscles bigger. The next two hours I work on the apparatus learning new skills and new moves to put into the routine."

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Louis stars in a short video on how to work out at home with pets

Renowned for his lean physique, Louis revealed the best way to get toned abs is doing crunches. "I think they do help," he said. "Sometimes there's articles that say 'get abs in two weeks' but let's be honest, there's no quick way to becoming fit and getting abs."

He added: "If you're working out and within the first 40 seconds you're feeling muscle fatigue, then it's working. There's things you can do which work the full range of the muscle differently. So yes, you might get a better ab line from a different exercise, but crunches will work your abdominals and oblique if you're doing 50 of them or 60 of them. Crunches definitely work."

Louis is currently dating reality TV star Lucy Mecklenburgh

When it comes to maintaining abs, Louis revealed that as a gymnast he focuses on core strength.

"We do a lot of exercises on the floor, focused around the mid body," he explained. "Sit-ups, v-sits, laying on your front, arch-ups, things like that. They all sound pretty basic and boring but sometimes those are the most effective ways of working out. So we do sit-ups and v-sits and arch-ups and crunches. These are all very good exercises."

For those resolved to get in shape this year, the bronze medallist had some helpful advice. "It's nice to see progress. If you've got your 'before' and 'after' pictures to compare, it gives you that boost of motivation. Take a 'before' picture and keep on with your regular exercise and balanced diet."

The British star recently put his own fitness to the test when he starred in a short video on how to work out with the help of your dog. "I'm a dog owner myself, I have been for almost a year now," he said, referring to his Siberian Husky. "More Than were keen to do a fitness video of dogs and the owners. There's facts out there that one in three dogs are obese so when I heard this I said, 'Get me involved, I'd love to help make a difference.' I always try to inspire kids and people to get involved in fitness so I said, 'Let's do it!'"

Petsercise With Louis Smith can be viewed for free from morethan.com

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