Think of your abs as your balance control center. Trying to steady yourself on a balance ball? Sounds like a job for your abs. Holding a tough yoga pose? It’s likely your abs to your rescue. Stabilizing yourself in a plank position? Yep, you guessed it – it’s your abs again. Your core apparently does a lot more than you give it credit for. A toned core means better balance, more poise, and a better bikini body to boot. It’s really a win-win. Cha-Ching.
Know Before You Go
Do a 10-minute warm up before your workout. Walk or jog around your block or in place in your living room, or dance around to 3 of your favorite songs. If you have access to a treadmill, walk at a slow speed (I recommend 3.5 mph) and at a high incline (8.5-9.0). Drink water between each circuit to stay hydrated, and stretch for 10 minutes after the workout.
It’s OK if this workout is challenging for you… if you keep this up just 2x per week, in a month or so this will likely be easy peazy.
-free weights (3 lb), balance ball, medicine ball
Circuit 1 – Do 3x Through
A) The “Fab Lower Abs” - Lay on your back on your mat with your arms resting at your sides. Life your legs slightly off of the ground, keeping your feet together. With control, lift your legs until they are perpendicular to the ceiling. With control, lower your legs to just above the ground. Repeat 12x.
B) The “All A-Flutter” - Lay on your back on your mat with your arms resting at your sides. Life your legs slightly off of the ground, keeping your feet together. Slightly ‘pulse’ your left leg, and then your right leg, up and down. (As your left leg lifts slightly up, your right leg lowers slightly down, and vice versa.) Your legs should hover around 6″ off of the ground throughout the entire exercise. Repeat nonstop, alternating legs, for 60 seconds.
C) The “Cycler” - Begin by lying down on your back on your mat with your hands behind your head (elbows bent) and your knees bent with your feet on the floor. Lift the right knee towards your chest, and raise your torso to try to touch your left elbow to your right knee. Slowly lower to starting position. Then, lift your left knee towards your chest and raise your torso to try to touch your right elbow to your left knee. Slowly lower to starting position.
Circuit 2 – Do 3x Through
D) The “Social Climber” – Begin by standing on your mat. Bend over and place your hands on the ground in front of you. Slowly ‘walk’ your hands out in front of you until you are in a position as if you are going to do a push up. Slowly ‘walk’ your hands back towards your feet and stand up. Repeat 12x.
E) The “Bees’ Knees” - Begin in a position as if you are going to do a push up, except your hands are resting on a balance ball. Your body should be a straight line from the ball to the floor. Keeping your abs tight to maintain your balance, bend your right knee to bring your knee up towards your chest. With control, return your right foot to the ground. Then, bend your left knee to bring your knee towards your chest. With control, return your left foot to the ground.
F) The “Tilt-A-Plank” - Begin in a position as if you are going to do a push up, except your hands are resting on a balance ball. Bend your elbows so that your forearms are resting on the ball. Your body should be a straight line from the ball to the floor. Keep your abs tight to hold your balance. Hold this position for 30 seconds.
Circuit 3 – Do 2x Through
G) “Don’t Make Me Do Burpees. I Hate Them.” – Begin by standing on your mat with your arms resting at your sides. Lower into a squat and place your hands in front of you on the ground. In an explosive motion, jump both of your feet behind you so that you land in a position as if you are going to do a push up. Do 1 push up. In an explosive motion, jump both feet back towards your hands. Stand up, and jump up in the air. Repeat 10x.
H) The “Twist ‘N Shout” - Begin by laying on your back on your mat holding a medicine ball at your chest. Lift your legs (feet together!) to a 45 degree angle off of the floor. Lift your torso off of the mat until you feel that your abs are engaged. Holding this position, twist to the right and tap the ball on the ground to your right. Then, twist to the left and tap the ball on the ground to your left. Repeat nonstop, alternating sides, 12x each side.
I) The “Super Workout Girl” - Begin by lying face-down on your mat with your arms outstretched in front of you holding 3 lb weights and your legs outstretched behind you. Simultaneously lift your legs and arms as high off of the mat as you can. Hold for 3 seconds. Repeat 10x.
Work out with a friend. That way, you can hold each other accountable to show up. You’ll likely miss fewer workouts this way.