Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Abs -- What Works

There have been articles written about sculpting your midsection, your abs. We have done countless scrunches, tons of trunk twists, and too many leg lifts. Most people make the mistake of only training their abdominal core.

There are more muscles in play than just "the abs". For trunk stability, a more fit look, and sexy torso people need to understand and train the muscles in play. From the picture below you will see the six muscles involved in gaining that sexy middle that we are all striving for.

Don't just work abs, work the core to include the abdominal obliques as well as the abdominal core ... but, how?

I found an article at Fit Watch ( about 9 different exercises that are done one set each for each ab workout. The routine also requires some specific equipment. This would mean that we either go to a gym or buy that weightlifting equipment for home. Not sure about you, but no equipment and simplicity are on my short list.

There are back muscles that also help with core stability, for now, though, we will look only at the abs.

Bicycle crunches are a mainstay in this. The bicycle crunch will work both your rectus abdominus (the abs), the big one down the middle, and the obliques.

Doing bicycle crunches is simple. Lay flat on your back with your hands laced behind your head. Bend your knees and lift your legs up while lifting your upper body at the same time.

Once in that position you will bring your right knee to your left elbow. You will extend your left leg straight out and twist your torso touching your knee with your elbow activating your obliques. Now, bring your left knee up and your right elbow together. Do as many repetitions as you can.

I follow up with an immediate set of regular crunches. I do these until reaching the point of muscular failure. You may want to do a bit less it you are just starting out. Also, doing this routine every other day will allow your body time to recover for your next session

These two exercises, bicycle crunches and regular crunches, will work the obliques and the core. My results when I first started doing these I went from a 40 inch waist to a 36 in a month.

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