Instead of steeling yourself for 500 boring crunches on the floor or on a bench, try experimenting with ab moves and core training that change your body angles, and use your own body weight to challenge your muscles in new ways – which will lead to RESULTS.
In addition, change up your ab training routines. Try incorporating a variety of exercises and start moving more during each rep. This will amp up more muscle fibers as you go, leading to… you guessed it… RESULTS.
Work your core muscles to exhaustion by using moves that target more muscle fibers and more body weight, such as an elbow plank, and you will see those six-pack abs emerge, says Michele Olson, Ph.D., professor of exercise physiology at Auburn University and an experienced fitness instructor/coach.
She’s launched dozens of body sculpting and body composition studies, using unique electromyography (EMG) technology to measure the amount of muscle activated by each kind of exercise repetition.
Targeting your abs and core:
— Perform all kinds of elbow planks and full-arm planks
— Perform Pilates mat classes designed to firm the abs but also help prevent back pain
— One-legged balance exercises improve your balance and activate your core muscles to help you stabilize
— Doing resistance exercises will help prevent the loss of muscle mass and, in turn, help you maintain or improve your metabolic rate – the rate at which you blast calories
— Try seated or twisting motions from the floor, such as bicycle crunches
— Yoga postures, such as side plank and chair pose, are a great option
— Hitting a heavy bag or shadow boxing may tighten and tone your middle muscles
— Perform other strength training exercises (like biceps curls) in a standing position and avoid sitting or lying down to lift heavy weights. (According to studies from the National Institutes of Health some standing exercises increase core muscle activation up to 25 percent more than sitting exercises.)
—- Even walking briskly for 45 minutes (about 7,500 steps) per day has been linked to a significant reduction of dangerous tummy fat and to a slimmer waistline. (Combining resistance training with aerobic exercise seems to be the most effective route for weight loss and core training). Use a treadmill to decrease the pounding your joints would take when walking on pavement or other hard surfaces.
— High-intensity interval training (or HIIT) increases fat burning and metabolic rate, even long after your workout is over. It is especially effective for slimming waistlines, say our fitness experts.
Want another simple fix for a stronger and leaner core? Dr. Olson says that drinking water helps flush toxins out of your body, and may relieve constipation and boating. “Drinking water before meals can make you feel fuller, so you’ll ultimately eat fewer calories at meal-time,” she says. Add more cardio workouts and clean up your diet for faster flat-ab goals.
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