The quest for washboard abs doesn’t begin and end with abdominal workouts, but they are of paramount importance.
The Workout That’ll Show Your Abs
Aim to perform this workout between 2-4 times per week, either as a ‘standalone’ session or bolted on to the end of your usual routine. With no rest in between moves, it should take you just 10 minutes to complete. Combined with a good diet and some quality fat-burning supplements, this is the quickest way to get a six-pack.
The Routine (Repeat 3 Times)
Overhead Crunch: 12 reps
- Lie on your back with your arms extended straight over your head so your body forms a straight line.
- Bend your knees and keep your feet flat on the floor
- Keeping your arms locked, contract your abs to crunch your shoulders off the floor
Reverse Crunch: 12 reps
- Lie on your back with your arms on the floor at your sides, palms facing down.
- Bend your knees and bring them towards your chest by contracting your abs.
- As they rise, roll your pelvis to lift your hips off the floor.
- Squeeze at the top then slowly lower until your thighs are perpendicular to the floor.
Why: The exercise should be slow and controlled, with no leg swinging or overuse of hip flexors. Pay particular attention to the downward phase – it’s tempting to let your legs drop, but they key is to maintain tension in the abdominals throughout the entire exercise.
Although it’s important to remember that your rectus abdominis is actually one long muscle that travels from your lower chest to your pelvis and that most abdominal specific exercises train the entire muscle, the reverse crunch will emphasise the lower part of the stomach muscle.
Janda Sit-up: 12 reps
- Lie on your back with your knees bent, feet flat on the floor and a stack of weight plates between your heels and glutes.
- Squeeze the plates with your heels as you cross your arms over your chest and contract your abs to raise your shoulders off the floor.
- Slowly lower and repeat.
Why: The theory is that by contracting your hamstrings, you disengage your hip flexors, which in turn makes the muscles of the stomach work that much harder during the exercise.
Frozen V Sit: 12 reps
- Lie down on your back, with your legs outstretched
- Your arms and legs should be outstretched with your hands and feet lifted just above the floor.
- Begin the exercise by simultaneously raising your torso and legs up towards eachother
- Then slowly lower back towards the floor. That’s one rep.
Why: After specifically targeting (and pre-exhausting) the upper and lower regions of the rectus abdominis muscle, the frozen V-sit exercise is a great way to comprehensively train the stomach muscles in their entirety in one exercise.
Extended Plank: 45 seconds
- Get in a press-up position but with your arms as far in front of your head as you can reach.
- Hold yourself there with your arms fully extended.
- Make sure your back is straight and hold for the allotted time.
Why: Very similar to the traditional plank, this specifically trains the transverse abdominis muscle – the deepest layer of abdominal muscle which wraps around the whole midsection. By extending your hands past the shoulders you force the muscles involved in the plank to work over a larger (and more difficult) range of movement. This tough variation is, without question, the quickest way to get a six-pack.
This content is imported from YouTube. You may be able to find the same content in another format, or you may be able to find more information, at their web site.
Sign up to the Men’s Health newsletter and kickstart your home body plan. Make positive steps to become healthier and mentally strong with all the best fitness, muscle-building and nutrition advice delivered to your inbox.
For effective home workouts, uplifting stories, easy recipes and advice you can trust, subscribe to Men’s Health UK today
This content is created and maintained by a third party, and imported onto this page to help users provide their email addresses. You may be able to find more information about this and similar content at piano.io