Workout and Wellness Wednesday: Slacker Edition

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I am feeling like a pretty awful blogger lately. But it has been a crazy first week back at work and I am slowly getting back into the swing of things. (Plus I have been spending WAY too much time doing stuff for Emerson's baby shower on the 26th) Excuses, excuses I know. Urg. I promise I will get my act together and post about this weekend at the lake with Gran, my amazing dog, husband, the fact that I think my new Jillian Micheals dvd got to the post office last night and I can hardly wait to get there after work and do the dvd after Cruz and I go to the Vet...etc.


I know this post is totally a cheat as I got it directly from Livestrong.com but hey, it's good, I'm too lazy to come up with anything myself this week and I am always interested in stuff like this so I figure this week, you are too! ha. Forgive me. But Enjoy!
 
Twist Crunches

The ab muscles comprise three areas: upper abs, lower abs, and your obliques or sides. It is vital to work on each area for a complete ab workout. The twist crunch is a perfect exercise that incorporates all three muscles in one workout. Lie flat on your back. Pull your knees up until your feet and knees are on the same level. Place your hands behind your head and pull your head toward your knees. As you lift yourself up, twist your body until your right elbow hits your left knee. Slowly return to your starting position and repeat. This time, twist your body until your left elbow hits your right knee. According to touchdownskills.com, you should be flexing your abs during each repetition. Return to your starting position.

Leg Raises

The leg raise is an excellent exercise that targets the lower abs, an area that is often neglected. Lie on the ground, flat on your back, and extend your legs straight out. Raise your legs together until they are perpendicular to the rest of your body. In a controlled manner, slowly bring them down until they are three inches above the ground. This is one repetition.

Weighted Decline Crunch

Resistance training helps tremendously in muscle growth. The exercise become harder when weight is added to the workout, but this also means greater results. The resistance used in this exercise is a medicine ball. Prop yourself on a decline bench and lift yourself up and perform crunches holding a medicine ball out in front of you on your way up and up over your head on the way down. This motion will provide resistance while stretching the abdominals. Start with a two to four-pound ball and work your way up when you get stronger.

Planks

Many trainers preach working out the entire core of your body when conducting ab exercises. According to touchdownskills.com, "The 'core' of an athlete is the muscles that consist of your abdominal, back and side muscles." The plank is a great way to build muscle to all three areas. Face the ground with your toes raised and your arms resting on the floor. With your back straight, look forward while contracting your abs. Hold for 60 seconds.

Reverse Crunches

Doing reverse crunches is another way to target your lower abs. Lie flat on the ground with your knees bent as if doing a regular crunch. Extend your legs until your knees are straightened and your feet are three inches above ground. Bring your knees to your body again. This is one repetition.

Russian Twists

The Russian twist exercise is an extreme ab exercise with fantastic results, particularly in the obliques. Great for the rotation of the core, Russian twists are performed using a medicine ball. Sit on the floor with your butt on the ground and your knees bent in a 45 degree angle, making sure your feet do not touch the ground. With the medicine ball held out in front of you, twist back and forth, bringing the ball to the left of your body and then to your right. According to ab-core-and-stomach-exercises.com, the farther you lean back, the more challenging the exercise becomes.

Wood Chop

Another great core workout is the wood chop. In order to sufficiently work the core, add weight to the cable machine. Grab one of the handles on the cables at shoulder height. Take a few steps away from the machine so there is tension on the machine. From there, askmen.com suggests standing with your feet shoulder-width apart, bringing your right arm across your body and clasping your hands together while holding the handle. Use your abs to bring your arms across your body in a wood chopping motion.

Jackknife

The jackknife is a simple exercise to perform, but it can yield phenomenal results. Lie down flat on your back with your arms raised over your head. In one motion, extend both your arms and legs up toward the sky. Try to touch your fingertips, but remember to do each repetition in a slow and controlled manner.

Front Crunch on Ball

Incorporating a Swiss ball into your workouts helps in a few ways. It provides extension to your body that you will not be able to obtain lying on a mat, floor, or bench. It also makes secondary muscles work to keep your body stable while balancing on the Swiss ball. Sit and lean back on the Swiss ball until your feet are planted on the ground in front of you. Place your hands behind your head and slowly lift your head and shoulders toward your torso.

Side Crunch on Ball

Using the Swiss ball again, place your right hip on top of the ball, leaning into the ball, making sure to keep your torso off it. Press your feet on the base of a wall and place your hands by your ears. Contract your left oblique muscles, lifting your torso up as far as you can, according to askmen.com. Do the opposite side of your body after completing.

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2 comments:

Emma-leigh said...

I'm a new follower. love the blog.

Taylor @ The Undomestic Momma said...

okay I need to do ALL of those!!!