Are you constantly sucking in your stomach in photos or when you’re trying on an outfit? Looking for ways to tone that tummy? Look no further! Nothing is as fast and effective as those abdominal exercises we all know and hate. While an abdominal workout will not selectively remove fat from this area (spot reduction does not work), firming and toning these muscles and improving your posture can reduce waist size.
Everything from over-eating to bad posture damages our abdominal muscles, giving them that un-toned appearance. Maintaining a good posture will work wonders on its own.
Stand against a wall with your feet slightly apart. If you can feel a large gap between the small of your back and the wall, tip your pelvis up to make that gap smaller and you should automatically feel your abdominal muscles contract, holding your tummy in. This is how you should be standing all the time!
Sit-ups and crunches can be annoying and boring, not to mention difficult. But there’s no real way around them. Rather than moan and think up creative excuses to get you out of them, schedule them into your day as much as you would schedule in brushing your teeth.
You could do them all at once first thing in the morning or use events in the day as triggers to remind you (a session every time you enter the front door for instance).
Sit-ups: Lie on your back and with legs bent, feet flat on the floor, lift your head and roll your shoulders up and down in small but effective movements as many times as comfortably possible. Keep your chin tucked into your chest and use your stomach muscles, not your arms, to create the movement.
Crunches: Do a sit-up and stay there, head off the floor, chin tucked to chest. With very slight movements move backward and forward.
Mid-Section and Lower Back
It’s important to not forget about your back, as your stomach and back work together.
Lie on your stomach, hands at either side of your chest (as if you are going to do a push-up). With your back flat, push your upper body off the floor, with your hands and knees acting as support. Pull your belly button as close to the spine as possible and hold for 10 – 60 seconds. And repeat this around 3-4 times.