Follow These Most Effective Ab Workouts For A Ripped Core
A flat, chiseled stomach is what most people base going to the gym on. While everyone would like to tone up their body, most people struggle to get a washboard stomach and a six pack is a mere dream. By incorporating the most effective ab workouts into your routine, you’ll be able to work your core so that beneath the outer layer of fat is a ripped six pack. After some time, you’ll even notice your abs showing more and more until you’ve reached your goal.
Remember, you can perform the most effective ab workout every day, but you need to maintain a strict diet for optimal results.
Let’s talk about the 4 most effective ab workouts that you can incorporate into your routine followed by a full workout.
1. Why Aren’t You Doing Planks?
At first glance, you’re likely to think that planks are rather easy and in no-way help your abdominal muscles. While you may not be doing a traditional sit-up, planks are great because they force your abs to help stabilize your body.
Planks are easy to perform; just go into a pushup position on your elbows.
If you find that planks are too easy, you can adjust the workout to make it more difficult. Simply do one-arm planks or single leg planks. You can also do one arm and one leg planks to really ramp up the difficulty.
Those of you that are not feeling the burn will be happy to know that you can use a stability ball to make this exercise even harder. All you need to do is place your forearms on the ball and hold it for 80 – 90 seconds – if you can.
2. Why Aren’t You Doing Decline Board Leg Thrusts?
Also called decline reverse crunches. This is one of the most effective ab exercises you’re not doing. This will need to be done at the gym or with the help of a bench. You’ll need to:
- Lay on the bench in an inclined position so that your head is higher than your legs.
- Grasp the back of the weight bench to add stability.
- Keep your knees slightly bent.
- Raise your legs straight up until your knees are near your face.
- Lower back down and repeat.
This is a really difficult workout that will put a lot of stress on your abs and work your lower abs as well. Remember, do this exercise slowly and for sets of 15 or 20.
You can view this exercise right on YouTube.
3. Why Aren’t You Doing Hanging Knee Raises?
An exercise most people hate. Hanging knee raises works your arms to an extent, but the real focus of this exercise is to work your abs. To make this one of the most effective abdominal exercises, you’ll need to perform each rep slowly. If you lift your legs quickly, you’ll not be putting the required tension on the ab muscles and see the results you want.
This exercise is done by:
- Hanging from a chin-up bar.
- Raising your legs slowly.
- Stopping when your legs reach 90 degrees.
- Lowering your legs.
I can’t stress enough that going slow is the best way to make this an effective workout.
If you can’t hang and do this exercise because of health or injury issues, you can lay flat on the floor or on a bench and perform the same exercise. Laying down makes this a gentle yet effective ab exercise.
4. Why Aren’t You Doing Bicycle Crunches?
Sometimes, the most effective ab exercises are those that you already know – or should know – how to do. Bicycle crunches target your lower abs (which are the most difficult to train), and work the oblique muscles as well (the muscles along the side of your abs).
Bicycle crunches can be done at home or at the gym and allow for a great workout when combined with other exercises. You can perform this exercise by:
- Lying flat on your back.
- Lifting both legs slightly off the floor. Holding this position for the entirety of your set.
- Place your hands behind your head.
- Raise your right elbow up and your left knee until both nearly touch.
You’ll want to ensure that your abs are engaged and that you’re lifting your upper body off of the ground to get your muscles fully engaged. You do not want to let your legs do all of the work.
A set of 20 reps for each side should be done. You’ll alternate with every rep.
The most effective abs workout will include a lot of exercises to ensure your entire core is targeted. I try to aim for 8 or more exercises, doing each for 1 set of 15 – 30 depending on the difficulty. Why don’t I just do 3 or 4 exercises? The abdominal muscles are very difficult to target, so the variations in exercises provides a better overall workout.
The Truth About Six Pack Abs is a program I recommend for anyone struggling to get the elusive six pack.
You Might Also Like: Strength and conditioning workouts