If a toned, flat stomach is what you’re after, it’s time to ditch the common crunch and shake up your core routine. By supplementing a healthy diet and regular cardio routine with core moves that require stabilization and cross-body movements, you can shed belly fat and keep your workout fun.
Also Read: 10 Must-Do Moves For A Flat Belly
Here are 10 fat-blasting abdominal exercises to incorporate into your routine.
1. Windshield Wiper
Start on your back with your knees bent at a 90-degree angle and your arms by your sides, fingertips lengthened. With your shoulders pressed against your mat and away from your ears, inhale and slowly move your knees to the right. Focus on your deep waist muscles as you make this movement. Exhale, return to the starting position, and repeat on the left. Do five to eight reps.
2. Bicycle Crunch
Lie on the floor with your back pressed to the ground. Put your hands behind your head, elbows facing out. Lift both shoulders and left leg slightly off the floor. Bring your right knee in toward your chest, twisting your torso and left elbow toward your right knee. Switch sides and twist your torso and right elbow toward your left knee. Continue in this pedaling motion, alternating sides. Do two to three sets of 20 reps.
3. Criss-Cross Lift and Switch
Lie flat on your back with arms by your sides. Extending both legs up toward the ceiling, cross your right leg over your left. Point your toes. Bring your abs in tight and inhale, lowering your legs 45 degrees. Exhale, pulling your legs back toward your body and lifting your legs overhead on an angle (aim for where the wall and ceiling meet behind you). Lift your hips and back away from the floor, supporting yourself by pressing down with your arms. Pause for a count before rolling your spine slowly to bring your hips and legs back to the starting position. Do up to three sets of 10 reps.
4. Elbow Plank
Line up your body into a straight line on the floor, resting against your forearms and knees. Step your feet out and push up on your arms to hold yourself in a plank position. With your spine parallel to the floor and your abs pulling toward the ceiling, contract your abs to keep your body in a straight line. Don’t let your butt stick up or sink down: hold yourself straight. Stay in this position for 30 seconds, eventually working up to a minute.
5. Discus Throw
Start by standing with your feet shoulder-width apart. Extend your arms out to your sides at shoulder level. Lunge to the right with your right leg, rotating your torso to the right as you lunge. Shifting your weight to your left leg, bend your knee and push off your left foot, hopping as you turn to the left and swing your right arm across your body. If you’re having difficulty visualizing this one, imagine throwing a discus: that’s the motion you’re mimicking. Do 10 reps on each side.
6. Inch Worm
Start in a standing position. Bend at your hips into a V so your feet and hands touch the floor. Walk your hands forward into a plank position. Engaging your abs, walk your legs toward your hands, back to the V position. Keep your legs straight and your back flat. If you need to, bend your knees or widen your stance to keep from rounding your back. Aim for 10 inchworms – or, if you have enough room – go for 30 to 60 seconds.
7. Roll Up
On your back, form a straight line with your body by stretching your arms and extending your legs. Inhale and bring your arms over your head, curling your upper body off the floor as you do. When you’re halfway up, exhale and continue rolling forward, reaching out to touch your toes. Inhale and roll back down, exhaling halfway down the move. Return to the starting position and repeat. Do 10 reps.
8. Planking Frog Tucks
Start on the floor in a pushup position keeping your body straight from your shoulder to your ankles. Bring your right foot forward, placing it as close to your right hand as possible. Avoid sagging or raising your hips as you move forward. Return to the starting position and repeat with your left leg. Do 10 reps.
9. No-Hands Reverse Crunch
Using a heavy piece of furniture or railing, lie on your back with your arms overhead, grasping the furniture to anchor your arms. Raise your feet and bend your legs. Contract your abs, press your back into the floor and lift your hips off the floor. Exhale to lift. Inhale to lower. Do 20 reps.
10. Mountain Climbers
Start in a pushup position with your body in a straight, diagonal position from head to toes. Quickly raise your right knee to your chest, return to starting position and then raise your left knee to your chest. Alternate legs quickly for 60 seconds.