Just try to make it through the grocery story checkout line without seeing a magazine cover shouting at you, “Get Flat Abs FAST!”
Everybody wants the 6-pack, the washboard, the chiseled midsection. But how to get it??? Well, abs are made in the kitchen, so start there.
(Sorry, it always, always … ALWAYS comes back to what you eat.)
But while you’re doing that, you also can build muscle strength so that, as you lose weight, your core will become toned and firm. Or more firm, anyway. Speaking as someone who’s had four kids!
In addition to the aesthetics of a more defined midsection, strengthening your core is important in overall health and maintaining functional movement as we age. You know I love yoga as a holistic way to strengthen the lower back, but I also do the moves below for targeting the upper, middle and lower abdominals, side obliques and back.
Do this workout 2 – 3 times per week as an add-on to another workout you’re doing, such as a 30-minute cardio HIIT (high intensity interval training) workout or my upper or lower body strength training workouts. Like those workouts, this was developed by my wonderful (though slightly masochistic) personal trainer, Taryn.
Run through the sets 2 – 3 times. It won’t take more than 30 minutes, I promise! As always, only start an exercise program with the approval of your doctor.
For equipment you’ll need:
- Yoga mat
- Stability ball (optional)
- Light dumbbell (optional)
Taryn’s Core Workout
Warm up: Some type of cardio (jump rope, treadmill) for 2-3 minutes to get heart rate up.
- Full Sit Ups x 20 (legs flat, reach up for the ceiling, then touch your toes)
- Twisters x 20 (alternating side to side, feet up + weight, if possible). Taryn and I like to workout outside in the summer!
- Plank x 45-60 seconds
- Leg Lowers x 20 (hands under butt to keep back flat on ground, if needed)
- Toe Touches x 20 (alternating from side to side)
- Side Plank x 45-60 seconds on each side (knee down, on elbow to modify)
- V-Ups x 16 (use stability ball to make it harder!)
- Hip Raises x 20 (one leg straight up, to make it harder)
- Supermans x 20 (hold in “up” position for 1-2 seconds)
This workout can be done at home, with virtually no equipment. Some of the moves can be done using a dumbbell or stability ball, but as with many exercises your own body weight is usually enough to get the job done.
Core work is essential to overall health and fitness. Lucky for us, it’s also a ton of fun!
C’mon, we go this!