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Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Bikini Abs in 5 Minutes a Day

 
We're smack dab in the middle of bikini season, and as always, I tend to slack off a little with my diet and fitness in late summer.  Maybe it's the intense heat, or relaxing days spent by the pool, perhaps one too many tastes of my kids' ice-cream.  Then there's summer vacations that throw off my workout schedule. Whatever the reason, it happens every year, and rather than stress too much about it, this year I am doing 5 minutes of ab work a day, whenever I can squeeze it in. 
 
These moves are my favorite for quickly toning the core.  Rather than using an all or nothing approach on hectic days that leave no time for a full workout, 5 minutes is something that anyone can find time for.  Since abs are one of the biggest trouble areas, and since they are front and center in a bikini, fitting these quick but challenging moves into your already jam-packed schedule helps to keep you on track.  Now, back to the pool!
 
 
 Recently my friend Amy, (amazing personal trainer and owner of Body Rock Fitness) and I took a beautiful and challenging hike in the Colorado mountains.  Amy offers custom meals plans as well as personal training and fitness coaching/advice.  She has international and out-of-state clients, so she can help anyone! Let her help you take your fitness and diet to the next level.  If you're interested in any of her services, contact her at:   Amy.Marolf@yahoo.com. 
 
Here she demonstrates these 5 moves:
 
1.  PLANK JACKS-
This is my favorite move for abs.  Start in a modified plank position, on forearms and toes.  Keeping back straight and flat and your head down and level with your spine, jump feet out to the sides as far as you comfortably can, so you are making and X.  Keeping jumping out and back to center at a medium pace for 30 seconds. 
 *These are tough, so rest in plank for a few seconds if you need a break, until you can work up to moving the entire 30 seconds. 
 

 
2.  TUCK JUMPS-
With knees slightly bent, explode up into a jump while bring your knees to your chest, as high as you can.  Land softly on your feet.  Continue for 30 seconds.
 
 
3.  CHATURANGA CRUNCH-
Begin in a modified plank position, on your forearms and toes.  Keeping back straight and flat, crunch your left knee up to your elbow, holding for a moment.  Return to the starting position and repeat on the right side.  Continue alternating sides for 30 seconds.  Try to keep your leg on the same level as your back throughout this move. 
 


 
4.  ROLL-UPS-
Lie on your back, with legs and arms extended, toes slightly pointed.  Slowly roll up, keeping arms overhead the entire time, until you are sitting straight up.  Return to the starting position by slowly rolling down.  I love to add weights to the move to increase the burn.  You can also add a twist at the top by leaving one arm pointing to your toes, and the other one pointing behind you.  Be sure to keep your back straight when you sit up.  Continue for 30 seconds. 
 






5.  SCISSOR CRUNCH-
Lie on your back with arms at sides, and one leg raised as high as you can, the other one on the floor.  Do a crunch while continuing to hold the leg in the air.  Lower out of the crunch, and switch legs.  Repeat the crunch.  Continue the sequence of scissor, then crunch, for 30 seconds. 

 
 
 
 *Repeat all five moves one more time to reach a total of 5 minutes.   
 
 
*Legal Disclaimer:  This information  is meant to supplement, not replace, proper training. Like any sport, these moves pose some inherent risk. As always, consult a physician before beginning any exercise program.

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