The best thing I did for my core was to get off the floor! Isolating your abs does little to help them show and just isn’t functional.
I didn’t start noticing core STRENGTH until I swapped crunches for tuck jumps, burpees, tuck jumps, planks (all kinds) and mountain climbers. They target your entire core (inside: the corset part and outside) and are fabulous, total body exercises. I didn’t start noticing DEFINITION until I started eating cleaner and training ALL my muscle groups: adding more lean muscle to my back, legs & arms helped boost my metabolism drastically.
I get asked a lot about ‘ab’ workouts and I admit I’m not big on advising people to pursue unrealistic goals: six packs are not necessarily possible for all women while maintaining a healthy body fat percentage. Most women will always have a little extra in the tum, and that’s just fine by me (also doing my best to help them feel better in their more ‘tum’ skin).
However, if you’re looking to burn fat and build core strength, try…
1. Getting off the floor
2. Strength training. Every bit of ya.
3. Using fat burning H.I.I.T cardio
4. Focusing on tougher exercises with less reps (think 8-15 reps until you fail instead of the 100’s of crunches many women do).
5. Adding compound exercises like burpees, mountain climbers, swings, pushups etc.
6. Adding instability to your existing routine (stability balls, bosu balls etc.)
Above ALL else? Diet. It doesn’t matter how hard you train, if your diet doesn’t change your body won’t respond as well. Eating clean (not necessarily ‘low’ calorie) will help: lower your sugar intake & avoid processed foods. Boost veggie intake & protein. Drink loads of water, and focus on making each meal healthier. Do not ‘diet’.
Restricting calories can screw up your metabolism, which is responsible for longterm fat loss (and muscle maintenance). You want to preserve muscle while torching fat: which means you gotta eat. :)
This is an example of what one of my ‘core’ focused workouts looks like: it’s cardio crazy. Remember, you start where you are: your ‘intense’ is different from mine! It’s more about effort than which exercises you choose. Train hard, train smart, and fuel up. http://fitvillains.tumblr.com/post/16340367184/weekend-workout-hardcore-core-30-minute-cardio-core
Hope this helps!