Your Beautiful Belly – Fitness Series

April 14, 2009

(ChattahBox) — So, let’s get to the nitty gritty on how to carve out the stomach and waistline you envision for yourself. The abdominal region is comprised of several groups of muscles, as you’ll see below. Strengthening your core is great for your lower back and your posture. There are several simple things you can do throughout the day to work on your abs without anyone noticing. Pay attention to your posture at all times. Practice flexing your stomach muscles during the day – pull them in and up as hard as you can whenever you think about it. Your cardio routine and nutrition program are very important so that you can show off the flat, strong abdominal muscles that you are building. A layer of fat hides all the hard work you’ve been doing.

My favorite ab workout right now is to plant your butt on a Bosu Ball. With hands or arms on the floor to support you, hold your head up as you lift your hips upward off of the ball keeping your knees bent. Finding just the right spot on the Bosu Ball and balance is tricky on this one, but the rewards are great!

Here are some links to other exercises from sportsmedicine.about.com

Rectus Abdominus (center)

  1. Bicycle Crunch Exercise
  2. Captain’s Chair Exercise
  3. Ab Crunch on an Exercise Ball
  4. Vertical Leg Crunch

Internal and External Obliques: (sides)

  1. Captain’s Chair Exercise
  2. Bicycle Crunch Exercise
  3. Reverse Crunch
  4. Plank (Hover) Exercise

Transversus Abdominus: (deep)

Focus on drawing your belly in and up to build strength in these internal abdominal muscles that provide support for your lower back.

Two or three times per week is a great goal for your ab routine. Shake it up, change the exercises. If it’s too easy, increase your reps or add weight. Rule of thumb is to do four to six exercises for each workout. For each exercise do three or four sets of 20 repetitions.

Submitted by SusanM


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