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Who doesn’t want rock hard abs?
While I don’t have rock hard abs yet and probably won’t for some months to go I just thought today I would share some of the core exercises that I am doing to try to get my abs back as close to possible as they were before kids.
Let’s get started!
Burpees are the ultimate in functional exercises. They’re useful for both cardio and for muscle building, which is why for abs burpees are perfect.
I’ll be honest and say that they are my least favorite exercise, especially after being tasked with additional burpees one day when I was late for class. However, there are so many benefits that come along with burpees outside of working on your core so I push through and do them.
Just stand up straight, squat with your hands on the floor, and kick your feet back into the push-up position. Throw your chest to the ground and get back to the squat position as fast as you can. You can even add some ten-pound dumbbells to really increase the intensity.
If you’re thinking burpees may be too much check out this post where someone reveals what happened when she did 30 burpees a day for 15 days.
Twist those abs with some Russian twists on the floor. Sit down on the ground, bend your knees, and make sure your feet are off the floor or lightly touching the floor. Your arms should be straight out in front of you and your hands should be pointing at the floor. Lean back into a 45-degree angle and twist as much as you can to the right. Hold the strain then do the same with the left.
I’m at the point where I’m about ready to start doing them with a medicine ball myself because I have noticed that lately, it’s becoming insanely easy for me to do these, which means that I’m not pushing myself hard enough.
You should lie on the floor with your legs straight out with your feet pointed towards the ceiling. Place your arms straight out on both sides of your body with your palms facing down. Make sure your legs are always straight and just lift your legs straight into the air without bending.
Consider adding some ankle weights to create more resistance and power those abs to victory!
About two years ago, this was another exercise that I found easy and I used to use ankle weights. I think back then I was doing the Brazilian Butt Lift workout DVDs and after about a week of doing that workout I was lifting my legs up without any problems. Now, I’m starting all over again so I’m taking baby steps. I’m definitely not ready to put my ankle weights back on yet.
Grab your exercise mat and start in a plank position. Draw in your abs and drive one knee into your chest. Switch your legs quickly. This is essentially like running in the same spot, with the aim of making sure your knees are hitting your chest.
To get the most out of mountain climbers you should keep the abs tight and avoid bouncing.
For me, this exercise also isn’t too bad unless I am doing it after I have been doing pushups, planks, or burpees. At home this is a good one to start with after stretching for me, however, at class it is just thrown in through the entire workout so I just have to suck it up, focus on my breathing, and remember that a minute isn’t so long and that next exercise may be a little bit easier lol.
Make sure you have a comfortable exercise surface because you’ll be planking on a regular basis. These hit both the upper and lower abs.
Keep your feet nice and together and lie with your face towards the floor, while propping yourself up with your forearms. Tighten the glutes and draw in the abs. Lift your whole body off the ground. There should be a straight line from your toes to the head.
Hold the plank and then return to the ground. Rinse and repeat.
I wasn’t introduced to planks until I was doing one of those 2-week challenges in a fitness Facebook group. The first time doing it I felt like it was something that I would never be able to accomplish holding for a minute or more because I literally had no upper body strength.
Now I’m actually getting a lot better, which is probably due to me forcing myself to do actual push-ups instead of staying on my knees from the very start of sets.
Pull Up to Knee Raise
For the pull up to knee raise, you should hang from a pull-up bar. Perform a pull-up until your chin is above the bar. At the same time, you should lift your knees towards your chest. For a greater challenge, you can hold this pose for a few seconds or add some weight to your ankles.
Take note that this requires a lot of core strength, so don’t worry if you can’t add this just yet. Trust me, I’m still trying to master building up to doing more than one pull up at a time even though I have an assistance band on mine. But, I was always told that anything that’s easy isn’t worth having, so I’m going to keep pushing along because I want those rock-hard abs.
Punching sit-ups take an old favorite and add a twist to it. All you have to do is get into the sit-up position and perform a sit-up. At the top of the sit-up perform two punches before going back down again. This is a fun exercise and it gives your abs a killer workout.
Feel free to add some weighted gloves so you can step it up a level. You can even add a barbell plate to your abs if you want to add some resistance to multiple areas.
Sit-ups definitely aren’t my favorite, but you can definitely feel your core muscles working with this kind as well as the bicycle crunches. The more you do it the easier they become so additionally accessories are recommended to make sure that you’re always challenging yourself during your workout.
Last Word – Get Those Killer Abs
These seven core exercises will give you the abs of your dreams. Get the right equipment to add resistance and to make them as comfortable as possible. Within a few months, and with the right diet, you’ll have that definition starting to show through. But make sure you keep those exercises up so you don’t lose those abs as quickly as you got them!
It may be a little hard in the beginning but after a week of daily short exercises, it will be second nature. You got this!
Do you have any other core exercises you would recommend for anyone looking to score some killer abs?