Deanna is the self-proclaimed “sweat loving blogger” behind The Live Fit Girls. She launched the food and fitness blog in 2014 and it quickly became a community of strong, supportive women encouraging each other to seek a healthy lifestyle and body that they love. We love it!
Below, she demonstrates ab exercises geared to strengthen and tone your core for a flatter stomach and stronger back.
Today, I’m sharing my absolute FAVORITE exercises to tone your abs and sculpt your midsection. But first, let’s talk about what I like to wear when I exercise. I’ve loved Athleta for years because they make clothing that lasts. The new Powervita fabric feels like heaven and has just the right amount of compression. It’s so silky, smooth and soft that it feels like a second skin. It literally hugs your body in the best possible way, with just the right amount of support and it never sags or over-stretches…so your booty looks amazing always. The colors, the lines, and the cuts are all amazing — super feminine with flattering design details, and super cute patterns and prints.
The Powervita fabric is the softest I’ve ever felt for workout leggings.
For this workout, I chose to wear the Colorblock Mesh Salutation Capris because I’m obsessed with the delicate mesh detailing on the side. I paired it with the Fully Focused Sports Bra because it keeps the girls super secured. And lastly, I finished the look with the Yogini Tank. I love the grey and white combo, and the back details to show off the strappy sports bra is everything. Seriously, so in love.
The BEST Ab Exercises
1. Roll Ups
Start by laying on your back with arms extended overhead and legs out straight. Engage your abs to flatten your lower back into the mat. Without using momentum, peel your spine off the mat, one vertebra at a time, pulling your belly button into your spine. Keep using your abs to sit all the way up and reach towards your toes, making a C-curve with your spine. Slowly lower back down, keeping your heels glued to the mat, and repeat. The key is to make sure you roll SLOWLY through your spine, using your abs, and not “hoisting” yourself up with momentum. Repeat for 10 full roll downs.
2. Criss Cross
Bring your knees up to a tabletop position, and your hands behind your head. Start with your RIGHT knee in towards your chest, and extend your LEFT leg out straight to 45 degrees. Curl up and twist your torso to the RIGHT, so that your LEFT elbow reaches towards your RIGHT knee. Twist back through the center and start to switch your legs. Repeat twisting to the LEFT knee as you reach you RIGHT leg out straight for ONE repetition. Complete 10-15 repetitions,.
Still on your back, raise yourself up onto your elbows, lifting your chest and keeping your back straight. Bring your legs straight up to the ceiling and engage your abs. Keeping your legs and spine straight, begin to draw a circle with your legs. Lower them down and to the RIGHT. Once you hit the bottom, use the obliques to finish drawing the circle and pull the legs up on the LEFT side. At the time, reverse and draw the circle in the other directions. Complete 10 circles in each direction.
4. Tick Tock Planks
Come into a plank position on your elbows, keeping your abs tight and a straight line from your head to your toes. Gliding from your shoulders shift your weight back into your heels to bring your shoulders back about 3 inches behind the elbows. Use the abs to shift everything back forward, bring the shoulders 3 inches in front of the elbows. Continue rocking back and forth without lifting your hips at all. Complete 10 rocks back and forth.
5. Side Plank Crunch
Come into a side plank position and reach your top hand towards the ceiling or place it on your top hip. Lower the bottom hip down towards the floor, and lift the hip back up by engaging the lower oblique muscles. Complete 10 repetitions on the right side before switching to the left for both side plank exercises.
Watch the full video below!
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Deanna invites you to join The Live Fit Girls community, where you can expect a new post almost daily, weekly workout schedules on Sundays (so you don’t have think about what you’re going to do at the gym each day), new workouts on Mondays, healthy recipes, motivational tips and tricks, and more.