With the anticipation of colder months, it's easy to start packing pounds, especially around the waistline.
If fat's your trouble, there's no possible way to rid yourself of it other than with a good cardio workout. "Cardio is the key and one of the main sources [to trim the core] because it helps warm the body up to increase the heart rate which helps speed up metabolism. The only way to burn fat is for the heart to be pumping and sweat," explains Josh Jackson, Trainer with 4th Quarter Performance.
Squats are not just a leg workout. Squats are a compound excercise. When you perform squats and move your body to a seated position, you activate the core muscles.“Squats are one workout that works the body, but in order to have a strong lower body the core must be improved," says Jackson.
The Proper Squat Technique
- Stand with your feet shoulder width apart.
- Do not choose weights that are too heavy.
- Keep your feet firmly on the floor with your back straight and head facing forward.
- Slowly lower your body, while bending your legs.
- Be sure not to lean forward and don’t allow your knees to extend over your toes.
- Squat until you are in a seated position.
- Then begin to lift your body and come to your starting position.
Add some plate weights, dumbbells, medicine balls, or ankle weights to your sit-up routine. By adding weights to your standard abdominal exercise you can get a stronger, more defined abdomen.
Yes, Nas made kickboxing somewhat emasculating while calling Jay Z a Tae-bo Ho in Ether. There's nothing emasculating when you have that lower ab crease at you beltline. Next summer, you'll be fit after adding these front kicks into your ab routine. This exercise “activates the lower abs,” says Jackson.
- Stand with your legs shoulder width apart.
- Slightly bend the knee of the front leg while keeping the back leg straight.
- If done properly you should feel a slight stretch in your back leg muscles and appear to be leaning forward.
- Lift the knee of your back leg and kick out with your toes straight up towards the air.
- Remember not to hyper extend your knee.
The angles equals the levels. Depending how far you lean back equates to the harder the abs will work.This exercise “helps strengthen the obliques and trim the torso," says Jackson.
- Sit on the floor and bend your knees.
- Tilt back while keeping your back straight then lift your feet about a foot off the floor.
- Twist your torso from right to left.
Hold it. Hold it. These hurt.
Planks are a static, isometric excercise that holds the push up position for an extended period. “Planks are a great full mid-section stabilization," says Jacskon.
- Lie on your stomach with your legs fully extended behind you.
- Hold your elbows alongside the ribcage and place the forearms on the floor with palms facing down.
- Flex the feet and tuck the toes under.
- Use your abdominal muscles and press up into a “plank,” aligning the top of your head with your shoulders, hips and legs.
- Be sure that your elbows remain on the floor and are in line with your shoulders.
- Continually pull the belly-button into the spine and fully engage the muscles of the back, buttocks and legs.
- Hold the position for 15 to 45 seconds before returning to the initial position.