Wednesday, 20 August 2014

Workout Wednesday: My Top Five Ab Exercises

Hello, gosh the past couple of days have disappeared pretty fast but finally I have an hour to sit and blog so hi! I hope you all had a good weekend? Mine was great but I can say I am totally partied out, I am looking forward to a quiet bank holiday and the extra day off thats for sure : )

I couldn't let a Wednesday pass without popping in to share my fitness post and staying with the top five theme today its all about abs and how I like to train them. I want to just say I love squats and lunges and any exercise you need to use for ab work but these five exercises are the ones that really make those muscles burn which makes me know those babies are getting a good going over! 


1. Plank

Who doesn't love a plank?! Ok lots of my clients don't but I make them do a wide range of planks from low to high to wide feet to side and many more and here's why:

Planks are a great way of training your entire core front to back as well as your whole body plus they are also great for injury rehabilitation and body reconditioning. Adding planks into your routine will help you to build strength from head to toe and help work on that toned tummy we all want by engaging all the abdominal muscles in one hit and tightening them up. 

2. Bicycle Crunch

Another exercise hated by most of my clients but loved by me because:

The bicycle crunch targets your rectus abdominis (lower ab muscles) and your obliques (waist muscles) while you twist and tilt throughout the movement. This exercise is tough as is but you can up the ante by adding weight or doing it in an incline position, you can also make it easier by using a stability ball to support the back. Many women have that pouch at the front of their tummy which they would like to get rid of, doing the bicycle crunch targets that area so get to it ladies! 

3. Mountain Climbers

I love love love mountain climbers! Performing this exercise again works your entire body but really works the core due to needing it engaged to keep your body straight, balanced and to pull your legs up towards your chest. This exercise is great for improving muscle and cardiovascular fitness and improving strength, flexibility and blood circulation. You can do mountain climbers in different ways to challenge the body and target the core at different angles. 

4. Leg Raises

Another great exercise for the lower abdominals are leg raises performed laying on your back, you lift and lower your legs in a straight position but you can target different muscles by changing leg positions or moving them in different ways. For instance you can lift and lower your legs in a circle which will engage your entire core or bend the legs whig will also change it up. Leg raises are a challenge and should only be performed by those that have been gaining strength in the core, no injuries please! To get the best results do your leg raises slowly and controlled and if you suffer from lower back pain try resting your hands just under your bottom/lower back when performing this exercise. 

5. Russian Twist 

Want to work all the abdominal muscles? Then add Russian twists to your routine, this exercise targets the whole core and when performed properly can whittle the waist down, whoop! Not only the core gets a good seeing to either this exercise really works the lower back due to the way you are sitting and it also helps with balance. 

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My top five ab exercises! I add these into my weekly routine and have done for a long time now and I can definitely feel and see the changes they have made to my core area. Keeping your core strong is so important for everyday life and keeping the body fat down in that area is very important for your health so get working peeps! If your looking for a full workout check out my Workout Wednesday page where you can find loads of free ones! 

Question:

Whats your favourite ab exercise?

8 comments:

  1. Great list. I strangely enjoy working my core. I'm a huge fan of Russian Twists and regularly do planks and bicycle crunches. Leg raises are my least favourite though and rarely do them...

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    1. Yay me too love a good abs workout! Glad to hear you include some of these x

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  2. I like the plank as it feels challenging but also possible if that makes sense. But then I don't do it on my own, only at pump!

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    1. But you do it and that's what counts!

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  3. I am really looking forward to being able to work on my plank again, I can remember when I could hold for 3 minutes now I can hardly manage 3 seconds! ;-)

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    1. You'll be back there donor then you know it! X

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  4. I definitely need to work on my core again after the baby comes. Bicycle crunches are such a classic, but they work!

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    1. They kill but bicycle crunches definitely work!

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