My favorite ab exercises consist of different variations of planks. They can literary be performed anywhere and are perfect for travelers or busy moms at home. Just 10 minute of abs a day, and you will notice a difference in your appearance. Planks work the entire body and strengthen the core, lower back, torso, glutes, and arms. I believe planks are a strong exercise for overall body toning. However, do not push yourself beyond your comfortable zone and remember my motto – “everything in moderation!” Comment below to share with me your favorite fitness moves!
Standard Plank with Leg Lift
Start facing down on the mat in a push up position and lower your elbows so they lay flat on the mat. Lift the right leg up (not higher than butt level) and bring back to the ground; repeat the movement with the left leg. By lifting your leg, your body has to work harder to resist instability. Make sure you always keep your tummy in (imagine it glued to your back), and legs tight! Keep body in a straight line from head to knees to hold a neutral spine. Start out with a 30 second hold and keep adding time as you progress. Repeat 3 times.
Start facing down to the map and rotate your whole body to one side while raising one arm towards the ceiling. If you are up for a challenge, bring one leg up to the ceiling and hold for 30-60 seconds. This exercise is great for the obliques and lower abs.
Similar to a standard plank but with weights. Hold 2 – 4kg weights in your hands and rotate your body to each side. Lift your hand up towards to the ceiling as you rotate and repeat the movement on the other side. This will work your entire core, and tone up the arms.
Stability Ball Plank
As your legs are rested on top of the stability ball, you get to use more of the muscles in your abdominals, obliques and lower back. The further away the ball is from your core, the more challenging the movement will become. You can try to bring your knees to the chest by rolling the ball up for extra challenge. Hold this position for 30-60 seconds and repeat 3 times.