Core strength is extremely important whether we recognize it or not. Having a strong core allows for more stable movement when doing activities of daily living, including any bending, twisting, or lifting motions. I do not have hours upon hours to spend exercising, so I have put together an effective and time efficient home-based ab workout for those of you who want results without spending all day in a gym.
Perform each exercise for 30 seconds, then follow with 5 seconds of rest. After your rest period, move immediately into the next exercise. Repeat this cycle two times completely through. By following this pattern, you will accomplish your core workout in under ten minutes!
- Reach-Throughs: lay flat on your back with knees bent; place arms one on top of the other, between your legs; squeeze your abdominals and crunch forward, reaching toward your toes.
- Flutter Kicks: lay flat on your back with legs extended; raise legs off of the ground and kick your feet while keeping your legs straight. You may place hands under your butt for more support. The closer to the ground your legs are, the tougher the workout – but more effective as well! Ensure that your back stays flush against the floor, and does not arch.
- Heel Touches: lay flat on your back with knees bent; place arms by your side and squeeze your abdominal muscles; reach for each heel going back and forth from side to side. It is not necessary to actually touch each foot, but reach as far as possible while maintaining correct form.
- Scissor Kicks: lay flat on your back with legs extended; lift legs off of the ground and kick feet from left to right, one on top of the other. As with flutter kicks, you may place your hands under your butt, and bring legs close to the ground to increase the intensity of your work out. Make sure your back does not arch off of the floor.
- Plank: get into a push-up position with bent arms, keeping your forearms on the ground. Make sure your body is in a straight line. Do not allow your butt to sink down or raise too high because this will cancel out the benefits of this exercise. Squeeze your core!
- Side Planks: turn on one side and bend your arm at the elbow to support your upper body; with your body in alignment, hold this position while focusing on squeezing your abdominal muscles; switch sides. Make sure your butt does not dip down during this exercise!
After completing this workout, I hope you feel accomplished! You are well on your way to healthier lifestyle, let’s just continue to take steps in the positive direction TOGETHER!
With Love, Jeni