3 of the Best Ab Exercises to Help You Slim Your Waistline

I had recently shared several tips and philosophies to help you slim your waistline and while I emphasized that you cannot spot train fat away, all hope isn’t lost. There are exercises you can do to shape and strengthen your abdominals so that you’ll be happy with what is revealed once the excess belly fat finally melts away.

3 of the Best Ab Exercises to Help You Slim Your Waistline

Before I share some of my favorite exercises with you, I want to go over a couple of things. First, you need to understand that when you add muscle to your frame before fat loss occurs, sometimes there may be an initial tendency to get bigger. Muscle is located underneath fat, so as you are adding this lean tissue, which will eventually help you burn more calories at rest since this is what muscle does, don’t get too caught up IF you experience an increase in girth. It won’t be severe, but it WILL be temporary and quite beneficial in the long run.

Second, you do not have to load up your abs with high intensity workouts every day. In fact, it’s best to work them hard every other day and then unload them the days in between by using them only to assist you in other exercises. One of the most important factors of strength training is recovery, so follow my suggestion and allow your body to properly adapt to these new demands you are placing on them.

Now for the fun part!

Woodchopper

This exercise targets every muscle in the entire core area and can be accomplished using dumbbells, medicine balls, cables, resistance bands and just about anything else you can get your hands on. Once you master the form, you can adjust the intensity and progress as needed.

In the first video, you’ll notice how the trainer pivots her foot as she rotates her body to the opposite side, however, other versions of this exercise focus on only moving the torso as demonstrated in the second video. Both versions will work your core, however, the one with the pivot offers the added benefit of opening up tight hip flexors which is ideal for people who spend a lot of time sitting. Also take note how there are different pieces of equipment being used in each video; demonstrating how versatile this exercise is. Try both versions and tell me what you think.

With Pivot Using a Medicine Ball

Woodchopper Without Pivot Using a Cable

Bicycles

This movement targets the rectus abdominis (front of the abs) along with your external obliques (sides of the abs) and hip flexors, giving you a well-rounded core workout. Make sure to keep your spine pressed onto the mat while doing this and if you can, challenge yourself and do them slowly as the video demonstrates.

Knees In and Outs

This is yet another effective exercise because it initiates movement using both the upper and lower fibers of your abdominals and keeps your muscles engaged throughout the entire movement. Personally, I need to support my neck at times, so don’t feel bad if you do as well. As with the bicycles, keep your spine planted firmly on the mat and give it a try.

These are only three out of numerous exercises that will shape and tone your abs. Again, don’t be discouraged if you don’t see any definition while there is still weight to lose. Just stay focused and be patient.
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