- I have been a teacher of fitness and health for thirty years. In 1989 I was certified for personal training with the National Acadamy of Sports Medicine. I had a gym in Santa Barbara for eight years. Co-owned and created a spinning bike company which manufactured bikes for five years. Also I have worked with nutrition companies for twenty years. Along with many wonderful non famous people I have trained many celebrities, and members of the Royal Family. My own athletic past consists of long distance running, long distance cycling, cross country skiing, down hill skiing, rollerblading, hiking, sand running, track work, and weight training. I have authored two fitness columns in local papers, and have been writing this blog since January 2010.
Friday, March 12, 2010
Working Your Abdominals
Everyone wants to have toned and defined abdominal muscles, but in order to get that six pack, you need not only work your ab muscles, you need to be lean. You can have a six pack, but if you have too much body fat, you will look more like you have a keg.
There is no such thing as spot reducing. In other words; you can not do sit ups and make the fat go away from your stomach area if you are not eating correctly. Spot exercise's do not get rid of fat in that area. You will lose the fat on your body in the way that you put it on. If you gain weight in your stomach first, that will be the last place it will come off.
If you are eating healthy, doing your cardiovascular exercise, and strength training, you will be more likely to see the definition that you are looking for. Low body fat is how you will be able to see that cut, defined, look that you are after.
Standard crunches are a typical abdominal exercise that most of us are familiar with. You want to do these slowly and keep your neck out of the exercise by looking up towards the ceiling. If done correctly, you do not need to do hundreds of these, 50 to 100 can do the job. These can be done on the floor, or on an exercise ball.
Bicycle abs are very effective. The lower you hold your feet to the ground, the more intense the exercise will be.
The ball catch is great for strengthening the entire abdominal wall. I love this exercise, and it really works!
Hanging leg raises are excellent for developing your abs. This is a little more difficult to do, but will give you quick results.
Side crunches or alternating side twists are great for working your obliques, the muscles on the side of your torso. A good place for definition.
V sit crunches are another way to work your abs. Proper form is crucial to avoid low back injury with all ab exercises, but especially this one.
And of course doing the plank will work you abs. It is the best exercise for getting your core strong and developing your abdominal area.
You can do these exercises everyday. Along with a healthy low fat diet and cardio, you should be able to get that six pack. It isn't easy, but with effort and discipline, you can do it!
I will be gone over the weekend to a family funeral...I will be back on line Monday March 15th...have a great weekend. Eat well, think good thoughts, and exercise!