This post is dedicated to Megan. She left a comment on a previous post asking for me to share tips on how to best improve the abs. Please follow in Megan’s footsteps and leave me questions/topics you would like for me to address. I will do my best to respond to everyone!
The secret to have a great mid-section is, well, no secret. You need to eat well and exercise. Now, let’s define that in much more detail.
For starters, you need to have a clean diet. Try to eat natural foods as much as possible and avoid processed foods. They have added sugar, sodium, and a list of other not-so-good things that do very little good and a lot of bad. Even more importantly really limit your refined sugar intake. Most of us can come up with an excuse for a “special occasion” about every day, so don’t fall into that trap! If you are eating sugar daily, you will see a big difference in your body just by cutting that out for a month. Also, it is crucial that you stay hydrated. Try to drink at least 32 ounces of water between wake time and lunch and 32 ounces again between lunch and dinner.
Secondly, be wise with your abdominal workout. Choose the exercises that make the biggest difference the fastest and do them every day. Doing abs 1-2 times a week will not lead to the changes people like to see. You should aim to do abs for 10 minutes a day. Here are three sample exercises that are fantastic:
Old-fashioned bicycle with a holding twist: Lie on your back with your hands behind your head, elbows out. Start with your legs straight on the floor. Lift your head and shoulders off the ground and your legs off the ground about 12 inches. Then, while keeping your left leg straight and in the air, bend your right knee and bring your left elbow to the outside of your right knee. Hold this for 2 counts and then switch to the other knee/elbow combo. Do not ever let your feet touch the ground and make sure you are doing the 2 second hold each time. It is this controlled motion that makes it really work your abs! Work up to 20 repetitions.
Lie on your back with your knees bent, feet in the air. Lift your head and shoulders up off the ground. Tilt your pelvis toward the ground. Then, lift your lower abs off the ground without letting anything else move. This should be a super tiny movement that you can barely even see but it makes a huge difference! Work up to 40 repetitions.
Lie on your back with your legs straight up in the air, perpendicular to your body so that your body is forming an “L” shape. Lift your head and shoulders up off the ground. Lower your legs just until you start to feel your lower back raise off the ground, and then go back up to starting position. Work up to 30 repetitions.
Enjoy your ab workout!