There was a time when chiseled, six-pack-sporting beefcake rappers like LL Cool J, Ja Rule and 50 Cent were running this rap game. No more, as out-of-shape has become en vogue in the hip-hop world and potbellied poets like Rick Ross and Gucci Mane are supplanting their cut-up counterparts in relevance and record sales.

We call this phenomenon the “Rap Gut” and it just might be the key to success in your own burgeoning hip-hop career. Do you think it’s a coincidence that despite his credibility issues Officer Ricky has one of the biggest albums or ’09? Or that Gucci Mane has been in and out of jail more than T.I. yet he’s got a ton of guest appearances floating around and a new song with Mariah Carey? We think not. So for those of you with such lofty aspirations as having your very own Rap Gut, just follow SL’s helpful tips.

– Rashaun Hall

1) The cornerstone of any good Rap Gut is a balanced diet. Just watch how OGs like The Fat Boys did it back in the day and follow suit.

2) Smoking may cause cancer, but look at it this way . . . If you smoke, you are less inclined to run and that immobility will definitely help foster your perfect Rap Gut. We know that since this pictured hit the internets last year Nore has wussed-out and gone the Whole Foods and exercise route. Hopefully he hasn’t given up on the sweet mentholated taste of Newport cigarettes. That’d be a waste of a perfectly awesome chain.

3) Hang in there. Don’t give up . . . and don’t be a quitter like David Banner who went back to “working out.” Keep eating, keep believing.

4) Don’t get us wrong, Rap Guts aren’t reason for total inactivity.We actually encourage gyrating. Once you’ve developed a sizable gut you’ll liven up any event with your now pronounced body movements. You can even dance like ATL MC Bonecrusher has been known to do – shirtless!

To find out the rest of these hilarious ways to get your rap gut on – check out Street for the full story!

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