Often the abdominal muscles are incorrectly targeted and worked on. The most important thing to remember is the abs are just another muscle group and need to be trained as such.
This includes the correct rest periods to allow muscle recovery. If you want to train every day, you must know your limits or training age. Training age can be looked at as how long you have been targeting the abdominals and knowing the capacity of that particular muscle group’s strength or endurance.
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While it is not ideal, you can work a muscle group every day so long as the time under tension or workout time is not high enough that you are approaching absolute exhaustion every day.
For instance, if I do 20 push-ups a night, I am working my chest and arms. This doesn’t mean I need to give these muscle groups the recommended 48 hours of recovery before I work them again because the damage done to the muscles was so minimal that 24 hours is more than enough recovery time.
Especially for the abdominals, exercise is usually not enough to be able to provide definition or tone. Having the correct diet is extremely important to toning your abs. But it is key to get the exercises right!
Here are a few exercises to aid in tightening and toning your abs in just 10 minutes a day!
Crunches, or sit-ups, are one of the more obvious exercises you can perform to improve muscle definition in your abdominals. They can be performed almost anywhere and also offer variations.
As you perform a crunch, make sure your feet stay on the ground and hands either touch both shoulders as you sit up or track along the ground. One variation is, instead of going straight up, twist your torso and touch your right elbow to your left knee without letting your hands fall from the side of your head. Then repeat except touch your right knee with your left elbow.
Planks are great not only for your abs but also shoulder stability and leg support. Another aspect that makes this exercise so effective is the fact that they can be done anywhere, just like sit-ups or crunches!
It’s also good to incorporate different types of muscle contractions to your workouts to avoid plateaus, as well as gain the specific benefits related to each particular contraction. Planks can do this with the isometric muscle contraction that they offer. This exercise also comes with variations such as performing it while on your side instead of looking down.
3) Ab wheel
A great article to read for more information on the ab wheel can be found here. Suffice it to say, the ab wheel is another ideal exercise for a quick ab workout.
Now with just those three exercises and variations you can find within each one, a 10 minute workout can easily be accomplished. One suggestion for such a workout is to do it in sets, or a cycle. Do a set number of sit ups or crunches, maybe 10-20 to start out with. Then go and plank for 30 seconds, and follow that up with a few rolls on the ab wheel.
Repeat all of that as many times in 10 minutes with a small break in between each set.
Once you start getting stronger, you can start doing more sit ups and planking for longer times. Doing a simple workout like this for ten minutes a day will surely improve strength, definition and tone!
If however, this is too easy, add more exercises that you find you like! Bottom line is if the exercise targets your abs and you faithfully follow a 10 minute version of a workout incorporating these exercises, results will be seen!
Connect here with WatchFit Expert Jon Kilian