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Top 5 Rules to get FLAT ABS for Summer! BONUS Ab Workout

Posted by Liza Muravyeva MS RD LD/N on May 14, 2012 8:27:00 AM

Bikini season is right around the corner, and if you live in Florida it never went away. So how are you going to get your abs tight and toned just in time? There are certain things you need to focus on when training your abs - so here are the top 5 rules to get the six-pack of your dreams.

  1. Flat Abs for Summer!You must exercise. Many women complain about the “pooch” they have located on their lower abdominals. Well, just remember that women give birth and have an organ there that men do NOT have. Additionally, to get rid of that extra fat, you must exercise your whole body to decrease overall fat. Read myth #2 in our ‘5 Myths about Weight Training and Losing Weight!’ article for an explanation on why you need an overall body workout.

  2. You will not get those ripped abs just by doing crunches. Your abdominal muscles are composed of internal and external obliques, the rectus abdominis, and transverse abdominis. Therefore, you have to train ALL of the different muscle groups instead of just one. Furthermore, your core is composed of the above mentioned muscles and your lower back muscles, such as your erector spinae. Do not neglect your back muscles! If you need some extra energy to push through a full ab workout try some Redline® or Redline Princess®.

  3. Exhale when you crunch! As you come into the crunch, exhale all of your air out so you get a deeper crunch within your muscle. Imagine crunching on a stomach full of air…not very affective!

  4. Are you just working out your neck? Too often I see very bad form, or people just crunching their necks instead of abs while doing crunches. Remember to keep your neck straight, focus on looking over your knees, and contract your abs - NOT your neck. This isn’t a race; take your time to perform each exercise properly, with good form and a focused mind.

  5. Have you ever heard of the quote “abs aren’t made in the gym, they are made in the kitchen”? If you are eating junk food every day, not working out, and maybe doing crunches 1x a week- you can forget those ripped abs ever popping out. You must eat clean and exercise to reduce your body fat enough to where you can actually see your abs.

BONUS AB WORKOUT

Here is a sample workout routine you can complete to start seeing your abs pop! Remember to exercise, eat clean, and train all parts of your abdominals and core to get those summer abs just in time! Disclaimer: Consult your physician prior to taking any supplements or participating in any exercise regimen.

Before you begin your abdominal work - lay flat on the floor and tuck in your pelvis to ensure your entire back is touching the floor (no arch in your back). This will engage your abdominals.

  1. 25 Crunches – Lay flat on your back and bend your knees with your feet flat on the floor. (see image ‘Crunch – Start’ ) Using your core muscles raise your upper body towards your knees. (see image ‘Crunch – End’ ) If you are advanced you can hold a 5-25 pound weight as you are crunching. (see image ‘Crunch – Weight’ ) Lower your upper body back to the floor and repeat 25 times.

  2. Hold a plank - If you are a beginner, start with a 30 second hold. You can also modify your plank by holding it with your knees on the ground. (see image ‘Plank – Beginner’)  If you are advanced, go for 2 minutes with your body straight, using your core to stabilize. (see image ‘Plank – Advanced’)  

  3. 25 ‘V’ Ups – Start by lying flat on your back with your legs together and toes pointed. Your arms should be straight and extended above your head. (see image ‘’V’ Up – Start’) As you exhale, pull your arms and legs together until your body looks like the letter ‘V’, with your arms extending towards your toes. (see image ‘’V’ Up – End’) If you are a beginner, crunch in with your elbow and knees instead of having your arms and legs straight. (see image ‘’V’ Up – Beginner End’) Return to the flat position and repeat 25 times.

  4. Russian Twists - Sit down on the floor with your knees bent and feet flat on the ground. (see image ‘Russian Twist – Beginner Start’) Tap side to side 25 times with your hands by twisting at the waist. Make sure to do this slowly, do not rush through the motion. For a more advanced version, lift your feet off the ground and hold a weight in your hands. (see image ‘Russian Twist – Advanced Start’)

  5. 25 Reverse Crunches – Lay flat and place your hands on the ground - palms facing the floor - underneath your lower back for support. Keep your legs straight and raise them to a 45° angle. (see image ‘Reverse Crunch– Start’ ) With your legs straight, lift them up all the way to the ceiling. (see image ‘Reverse Crunch Advanced – End’)  Drop them down slowly to touch the floor. If this is too difficult or uncomfortable, drop your feet down to the starting 45° angle instead of completely to the floor. Focus on using your core muscles to control the speed at which you lower your legs. Make sure you are lifting your legs STRAIGHT up like you are pointing toward the ceiling with your feet, and not OVER your head like you are pointing at the wall behind you.

Repeat this sequence 2-3 times for ripped abs!!

What do you do to keep your abs toned? Share your comments and questions below.

Crunch (exercise for abs) Plank (exercise for abs)
'V' Up (exercise for abs) Russian Twist (exercise for abs)Reverse Crunch (exercise for abs)


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Topics: health and fitness, fitness training, abs, training tips, fat burning, fitness tips

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