March 10, 2010 at 5:17 pm , by jbrown
It’s so easy to get into an exercise rut, particularly when it comes to toning your abs. You see a bit too much flesh on your tummy and you immediately start doing crunches to get rid of it. It’s almost like a Pavlovian response. Unfortunately, it’s a flawed response because a) crunches challenge only one of the muscles in your core so you don’t get great results, and b) you could hurt your back if they’re always your go-to move.
To get rut-busting core exercises that really work, I went to Jackie Warner, the no-nonsense trainer of Bravo’s Work Out fame and author of the upcoming book This Is Why You’re Fat (and How to Get Thin Forever). These five ultra-firming moves are sure to give your routine the shake-up it needs. Aim to do 3 sets of 20 reps of each exercise, but be sure to work up to that gradually. These moves are challenging, so do whatever you can in the beginning.
Sit on the floor with your knees slightly bent in front of you, heels on the floor and hands behind head. Lower torso no further than 45 degrees (see photo #1 above—this is the starting position). Come up and twist your torso to the right, bringing right elbow to left knee (photo #2). Aim for 20 reps and repeat on the opposite side to complete the set.