Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Advance Your Abdominals

Before a long run I love to do this routine. So start with these few exercises with 3 sets of 15-20 reps. Next 6 or more mile run!

Decline Lower-Abs Blaster

Target Muscles: rectus abdominis

Set Up: Lie faceup on a decline bench with your head at the top. Grab the bench behind your head and point your legs towards the ceiling [A].

Action: Contract your abs as you raise your hips to bring your feet closer to the ceiling [B]. Pause, then slowly return to the start. Repeat for three sets of 15 to 20 reps.

Tip: Don’t swing or rock your hips as you lift them.

Abdominal Roller

Target Muscles: obliques

Set Up: Lie faceup on the floor, with your calves resting on a stability ball. Extend your arms at your sides and press through your palms to lift your hips from the ground [A].

Action: Keep your upper back in contact with the floor as you slowly twist your hips to one side [B]. Pause, and then roll back to the center and towards the opposite side. Do three sets of 10 reps on each side.

Tip: Watch that your back does not sag throughout your set.

Heel-to-Toe Crunch

Target Muscles: rectus abdominis

Set Up: Lie on your back with your legs extended; stack your feet and extend one arm towards the ceiling as shown.

Action: Lift your shoulders from the floor slowly; keep your eyes on the ceiling as you move. Pause, then slowly return to the start. Repeat for three sets of 15 reps; when you are through, reverse the position of your feet and repeat with your opposite arm extended.
Tip: This is a small motion; don’t allow your upper back to lift higher than necessary.
Side Plank with Raise

Target Muscles: obliques, deltoids

Set Up: Lie on your side with your legs stacked and your lower forearm resting on the floor. Hold a light dumbbell in your other hand [A].

Action: Lift your hips from the floor to bring your body into a straight line [B].

Next, lift the weight towards the ceiling until your arm is straight [C]. Slowly lower the weight, then your hips, to return to the start. Repeat for 10 reps, then flip over and do the same with your other arm. Aim for three sets on each side.
Tip: Try this exercise without the dumbbell first before attempting it with a weight.
By the Oxygen staff; Photography Paul Buceta source: http://www.oxygenmag.com/


  1. Hey there. Love your workout! However, I'm just starting out after years of being sedentary. Do you have a modified version of the first exercise for this day? Doing this on a bench is just too advanced for me.

  2. Do you have an alternative to use instead of a bench?? I just don't have one handy at my house

  3. Yes you can do the bench exercise laying on the ground. Try just laying on the ground and place your hands under your bottom and lift your legs up and down.

    The bench is a safe way to do the exercise but like you I don't have a bench so I do v-ups and other exercises to get the same area. All the AB routines I have on the blog are great for your abs with or without a bench.

  4. Hello, there is no print version of Day 3 Workout.
    Is it possible to get it ?
    Thank you !

  5. Is there a different way for me to do the decline low ab blaster. I am doing these at home & I dont have a bench

    1. while laying on the ground Contract your abs as you raise your hips to bring your feet closer to the ceiling [B]. Pause, then slowly return to the start. Repeat for three sets of 15 to 20 reps.

  6. The workout is great, but I don't have a ball to do the second activity, is there something else I can use or do to get the same workout?

    1. Pendulum

      The pendulum exercise, sometimes called a tick tock or hip roll, begins lying on your back, hips and legs raised to a 90-degree angle. You inhale and rotate your legs and trunk over to one side. Exhale and compress your abdomen to set your hip down and rotate your trunk to the other side. You can also repeat the movement on one side. Do not to allow arching of your lumbar vertebrae. Make it more challenging by rotating over and straightening out the top leg or straightening both legs.

  7. I just stumbled across this website and I'm so glad I did. I've been working out routinely for about 6 months and I love the results I've got, but its been so mundane lately. You just supplied me with an array of new workouts that I've never even heard of, thank you so much! And you are so motivational to the women who comment on here, keep up the good work and inspirational comments!!

  8. Just finished Day 2 - a little late to the party - and wanted to say thank you! Looking forward to seeing things change over the next 3 weeks!

  9. For the Decline lower-abs blaster can that be done laying on the floor or do you have to have a decline bench?

  10. I just completed day 3! Thanks Michelle! The only thing I need to REALLY improve on is my cardio. What do you think about stationary bikes a few days a week for cardio?