Recommended Ab Building Exercises

Recommended Ab Building Exercises

Abs may be made in the kitchen, but a clean nutritious diet in combination with a workout routine (a mixture of cardio and strength training) and a circuit that hits those abdominals will definitely give you some great, visible results.

Perform this as a circuit two or three times a week, or pick and choose a few to end a workout.

(1)The Plank 

Strengthens your core, lower back, shoulders, arms and glutes. It forces you to constantly squeeze your abs

How do I do it?

Get into a push up position on the floor, bend your elbows at a 90-degree angle and rest your weight on your forearms and get on to your tiptoes. Your back should be nice and straight and your elbows directly underneath your shoulders.

Hold this position for as long as you can. At first, it’ll be a little difficult, but keep pushing through!

How long/How many reps?

Until failure – keep tabs on the time and slowly increase. So if you were able to hold the plank for 20 seconds your first attempt, aim for 30 seconds and so on.

Eventually, you should be able to hold the plank position for two minutes. If you’re planking as part of an abs circuit exercise, do it for 4 reps.

(2)The Leg Raise

Strengthens lower abs, lower back and hips, core

How do I do it?

Lay flat on your back with your arms by your sides, palms facing the floor. Raise both of your legs, keeping them as straight as possible until they’re pointing to the ceiling, slowly bring them back down towards the floor, but hold for a few seconds before you reach the floor and repeat.

How long/how many reps?

15 to 20 or until failure

(3)The Jack Knife Sit Up

Strengthens your lower abs

How do I do it?

Lay flat on your back with your arms and legs extended straight (your arms should be behind your back, over your head).

Now, raise your legs and arms to meet in a jack knife position, you should be able to nearly touch your feet. Your upper stomach should be off the floor whilst both your arms and should be straight.

How long/how many reps?

15 to 20 or until failure

(4)The Crunch

Strengthens your core and upper abdominals

How do I do it?

Lie on your back with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor, hip width apart. Place your hands behind your head for support, with your elbows at a 90-degree angle.

Bring your head, neck, shoulders and upper abdominals off the floor, hold for a few seconds, and lower yourself back down.  Remember that you should feel a ‘pull’ within your abs, not your neck.

How long/how many reps?

15 to 20 or until failure

(5)Dumbbell Side Bend

Strengthens your oblique muscles (aka love handles/muffin tops!)

How do I do it?

Stand up straight with your back straight, and feet shoulder width apart. Hold a dumbbell in your right hand, and use your left hand to anchor yourself by placing it on your waist.

Keeping the rest of your body still, bend slowly to your right, travelling down towards your feet with the dumbbell, hold for a few seconds, then come back to your starting position.

How long/how many reps?

15-20 or until failure

There You Go – Now Get Down That Gym!!!