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Whittle Your Middle With The All-Abs Workout

SUSI MAY popsugar 2017-06-06 15:28:54

  You might still be covering up your tummy but toned abs never go out of style, so keep drawing your navel toward your spine. Here are some great exercises for toning your midsection. Remember, the ol' Pilates trick of pulling the belly button in ensures that you're working the deepest ab muscle (known as the transverse), which helps create a sleek midriff.

  The exercises are divided into three sections: upper abs, obliques, and lower abs. Combining these exercises with regular cardio and clean eating and incorporating these flat-belly foods into your diet will help you keep flat abs throughout the year.

  Upper Abs: Crunches on Exercise Ball

Sit on a well-inflated exercise ball.

Place your hands behind your head, and walk your feet away from the ball so your torso starts to roll onto the ball. The ball should support your hips and the curve of your lower back. Your legs should form a bridge with your knees bent at right angles.

Exhale and lift your upper body by about 45 degrees, pulling the deep abs in toward the spine, and return to starting position. Don't yank your neck! Do 25 reps.

  Obliques: Twisting Side Plank

Come into a side plank on your right side, with your feet stacked one on top of the other and your weight on your right elbow with your fingers reaching away from your body, palm down.

Place your left arm behind your head, and inhale to prepare.

Exhale and pull your navel to your spine to engage your deep abs, and rotate your left rib cage toward the floor. Stay there for a second, and deepen your abdominal connection by pulling your navel in toward your spine even more.

Return to starting position, and repeat seven more times for a total of eight reps, then switch sides. Repeat series again on both sides.

    Lower Abs: Hanging Ab Curls

  This exercise works all the abs but targets the lower abs and the deepest ab muscle, the transverse abs. The abdominal muscles are working more as stabilizers against your powerful hip flexors in this move.

Using a pull-up bar, get a good grip with your palms facing out or toward each other.

Start with your legs hanging straight down, and on an exhale pull your abs toward your spine and bend your knees, lifting them toward your chest.

Without swinging, slowly lower your knees, returning to a straight-leg position.

Repeat for a total of 10 to 12 reps.