We all want a flat stomach and six-pack abs on our belly. However, few of us are ready to go the distance and change their lifestyle in order to achieve that elusive feat.
What do you think, is it impossible to get a six-pack? You’ve certainly seen your fair share of people with perfect abs.
In reality, everyone can get a six-pack, but it all depends on dedication.
One of the most common excuses I hear nowadays is that people do not have time, or they cannot go to the gym every day.
While some of that is true, I’ve come to understand that sometimes, all you need is a quick 10 or 15 minutes workout at home, and you are good to go.
Over the course of several years exercise, I’ve found out that the following 12 exercises are most effective, and everyone can do them, beginners or experts.
The standard exercise for getting a flat stomach is crunches. There are many variations, but the standard crunch is still the best exercise and the simplest you can at your home.
Lie flat on the floor, bend your knees and keep your feet flat on the floor. Your feet should be in hip-width apart.
Now, place your hands on the back of your head. Start the exercise by pushing your back into the floor in order to engage your ab muscles.
Tilt your chin slightly, but always remember to keep some space between your chest and chin. Important notice: your lower back should never leave the floor.
Leg pull-in, knee up
Another of the popular ab workouts, the leg pull-in is very simple, yet effective exercise.
Lie down flat and place your hands under your butt. Position your knees together.
To perform the exercise, pull-in the knees towards you, as you are moving your torso towards the knees.
The two actions should be performed simultaneously, not separately. Make sure to lift your head and shoulders as well.
Also known as a judo push up, dive bomber is one of the best you can try to flatten your tummy, and strengthen your core.
Start by putting your hands flat on the floor with shoulder width distance between them.
Keep your back straight as you are extending your legs back. This is actually the push-up position.
During the exercise, your feet are positioned wider than your shoulder, and your body is supported only by hands and toes.
From the starting push-up position, move your hands back towards your feet, but make sure you maintain your arms straight.
Your torso will move up. Now, arch your chest and body forward, but make sure that your hips are moving down towards the floor.
From there, you need to return your starting position, but make sure you come back in the same lane as you were moving forward.
To do so, you need to straight your arms, arch your back, and push your torso upwards. Beginners can do this exercise with knees on the floor.
Burpees are a personal favorite of mine. They are great for flattening your stomach and losing weight.
The bonus points go for the cardio effect. Burpees are one of the most dynamic stomach exercises that make you stronger while burning calories.
The initial position is standing straight with feet in hip-width apart. Squat to the floor, but place your hands on the floor just in front of you.
From there, jump your feet out and you’ll get yourself in a pushup position. You are supporting only with hands and toes while your body is still in straight line.
Return to your starting position with jumping your feet back, and jump as high as you can when you are standing up. Repeat the exercise for 30 to 60 seconds.
A lot of people underestimate the plank exercise, without knowing it is one of the best, if not the best exercise for your core muscles, including the abdominal muscles.
You can achieve a lot by doing a plank every day for just 5 minutes. When I am doing the plank, I try to separate the five minutes into intervals of one minute, as it is easier, but also effective.
To perform a plank, get into a press-up position, and then bend your elbows, resting your weight on your forearms.
Make sure your body is in a straight line from your feet to your shoulders. Suck your belly, engage your core and hold the position.
The side plank is very similar to the plank position, and the goal is the same: hold your body in a straight line position for as long as you can.
The difference is, you are now positioned on the side, with your elbow beneath your shoulder. During the exercise, you should never let your hips drop and touch the floor.
Perform the side plank in intervals of 30 seconds on each side for five minutes.
The popular name is mountain climbers for this exercise, and in reality, the exercise requires you to alternate knee-ins.
The best part about this exercise is that you are working your entire core, not just your stomach. And the faster you do it, the more effective it is.
To begin the exercise, place your hands on the floor in a shoulder width apart. From there, extend your legs and torso behind and stand on your toes.
Your body is in a straight line, with nothing but toes and hands supporting it.
You can start with your left or right leg by flexing your knee and hip at the same time, which will bring your knee up towards your chest.
If you are flexing your left knee, your right leg keeps extended. Switch leg, by extending left, and flexing the right knee.
Do this simultaneously, and as fast as you can for 30 to 60 seconds.
This is another favorite of mine, as it actually works your belly, and back.
Superman is a great exercise for all of you sitting in front a computer screen all day, as it helps engage your back muscles and strengthens your core.
To perform the exercise, lie down with your stomach on the floor. Extend your arms and legs as high as you can, and keep your neck in neutral position.
Your body should form an “elongated U shape”. Keep your arms and torso stationary, and hold for at least 30 seconds.
Inchworm or walk out
For this exercise, it is recommended that you have little more space since it requires moving forward.
To begin the exercise, stand straight and keep your legs extended. As you are bending over using the hips, touch the floor with the palms.
Keep your legs straight as you are walking with the hands as far forward as you can.
During the entire time, do not let your hips drop. When you reach as far forward as you can, walk your feet forwards to your hands, while keeping your palms on the floor.
From there, continue with moving your hands forward.
Unlike the standard squat, the jump squat is a more dynamic exercise which results in more fat burned.
Stand in the same start position as for squat, and then do a regular squat.
Once you are down in a squat position, engage your core and jump up as high as you can. When you are landing, lower your body to a squat position.
Lying leg lift
The beauty of this exercise is in its versatility, as you can perform it with one leg only or with both legs. If you can find a bench, you can even increase the difficulty and resistance, and engage even more muscles.
The starting position is lying on the back on the floor. Place your hands under your butt. Your legs are straight during the entire time.
Slowly raise one leg, while the other is on the floor, and then switch the leg.
For even more effect, raise your both legs perpendicular to the floor.
At the end of the exercise, your upper body and legs should form a 90 degrees angle. Hold the contraction for at least one second when your legs are up, and then slowly move them back down.
A word of notice, this exercise is not for beginners as it requires a lot of strengths. However, once you are able to perform it, it is one of the most fun ab exercises.
Lie with your back on the floor, and place your hands sideways in shoulder height.
Raise your legs 45 degrees from the floor, and swing left and right, just like a windshield viper. Swing slowly, and as you master the exercise, you can swing further and raise your legs higher.