Summer is just around the corner, people! It’s crunch time (yes, pun intended) to get your abs bathing suit ready! We’re going to focus on TONING today. These exercises will help to give you visible definition in your abs. I can give you that much…BUT, you have to promise me a healthy diet until summer! You won’t be able to see the results of your rock hard abs if they are hiding under fat. And don’t you want to see the fruits of your labor if you’re going to work hard? That’s what I thought. Focus on eating whole grains (e.g. whole wheat), lean proteins (e.g. chicken, fish), and lots and lots of vegetables. Keep sugar and salt to a minimum, if possible. YOU CAN DO IT!
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.
Circuit 1 – Do 3x Through
A) The “Rise ‘N Shine” – Begin by laying on your back on your mat holding a balance ball in between your feet. Rest your arms at your sides. Lift your legs so that they are at a 90 degree angle to the floor. With control, lower your legs straight down until your feet are an inch above the ground. With control, raise them back up. Repeat 12x.
B) The “To ‘N Fro” -Begin by laying on your back on your mat holding a balance ball in between your feet. Rest your arms at your sides. Lift your legs so that they are at a 90 degree angle to the floor. With control, lower your feet (holding the ball) down and to the right, stopping just an inch above the ground. With control, raise them back to center. Repeat again on the left side. Repeat alternating sides, 12x each side.
C) The “Mean Lean” – Begin in a position as if you are going to do a push up, except your hands are resting on a balance ball instead of on the ground. With control, bend your elbows so that you are resting on your forearms on the ball. Keep your body as flat as possible and hold this position for 30 seconds. The key to holding your balance is to keep your core tight!
Circuit 2 – Do 3x Through
D) The “Rock ‘N Roll” – Begin in a position as if you’re going to do a push up, except your feet are resting on a balance ball. Keep your abs tight and bring your knees into your chest while your feet are on the ball. With control, extend your legs to roll the ball back out behind you to starting position. Repeat 12x.
E) The “Pumped Up Push Up” – Do 10 push ups with your feet resting on a balance ball.
F) The “This Is How I Roll” – Begin in a position as if you’re going to do a push up, except your feet are resting on a balance ball. Keep your abs tight and bring your knees into your chest. Holding this position, rock your legs back and forth from side to side. Repeat 10x.
Circuit 3 – Do 2x Through
G) The “Classic Crunch” – Begin by laying on your back on your mat. Bend your knees so both feet are on the floor. Cross both hands behind your head. Pretend there is an orange under your chin and lift your shoulders a few inches off of the ground towards your knees. With control, lower back to the floor. Repeat 20x.
H) Repeat the “Classic Crunch,” except lift your right elbow towards your left knee, and then repeat by lifting your left elbow towards your right knee. Repeat, alternating sides, 15x each side.
I) The “Sideways Stakeout” – Begin in a position as if you are going to do a push up. Rotate your body to the left so that you are facing the wall and all of your weight is supported by your feet and your right arm. Your left leg should be stacked over your right. Raise your left arm overhead. Bend your right knee into your chest so only your left foot is on the ground. Hold for 30 seconds. Repeat again by rotating to the right side and bending your left knee into your chest.
It’s important to stretch! You don’t want to pull a muscle, do you? Yeah, that’s what I thought.