It's kind of a running joke that if we made and ate all of the yummy food and desserts featured on our pinboards, we'd all be enormous. Just check out my "YUM" pinboard! I mean, there's so much deliciousness, it's nearly impossible to resist trying at least one or two new recipes a week? Month? However, for as many recipes and tempting treats there are on Pinterest, there are just as many fitness routines, inspirational photos and exercises to motivate and inspire! I have my own "Bridal Fitness" board that's worth checking out, too! ;) There is a wealth of information on the web regarding fitness and exercise, and if you haven't taken advantage of Pinterest in this way yet, you definitely should!
Last week, while maintaining my regular cardio routine, I started thinking more about my abs. I used to dance, so I always had a pretty strong midsection, but it's been a while since high school, and I've decided that I need to start paying a little more attention to that area of my body! First and foremost, I know that my diet has a TON to do with what my abs look like. I always say that you can do a million and one crunches, but if you don't watch your diet and keep your weight down, there's always going to be a layer of fat covering those fab abs! It's just the way that it works, unfortunately =P But having a strong abdominal section can really help you in so many ways, whether that's helping to keep the pressure off of your back, improving your balance, helping you ride a bike, speed walk, run, anything really...so much of what you do everyday comes from your core!
When I was thinking about how to integrate more ab strengthening exercises into my workout regimen, I went straight to Pinterest! There are so many great ideas out there....some new moves that I haven't seen before, and also some great combinations and routines with more familiar ab exercises. So I thought that today, rather than reviewing a workout or suggesting a new exercise routine at the gym, I would share some of the great abdominal workouts I have accessed through Pinterest!
I'm planning on trying a few of them, and I've already begun doing the "Fab Ab February" routine that's included below. I hope you'll join me!
I've included several more ab exercises and workouts found on Pinterest down below, but first, here are some exercise tips that I've learned along the way that you should definitely keep in mind!
- This is probably the biggest and most common mistake that I see in the gym. When you're doing a situp, you have to remember that in order to build muscles that are flat, you have to keep them flat. If you pooch out your belly everytime you raise your upper body and do a situp, you are basically building muscles that pooch out that same way. When I taught my husband this, he was really surprised, and the first thing he said after he tried it my way? "This is way harder!" Well, yeah, because you're working your abs more effectively! When you raise your head to do a crunch, focus on lifting your head and chin up toward the ceiling, rather than putting your chin to your chest. Don't let your stomach bulge at any point during the move; and if this means that you can't raise your head as high, then don't. Keep each abdominal move small, controlled and for your own sake - don't give yourself a pot belly doing crunches! =P
- The same goes for when you're doing abdominal exercises that require you to move and lift your legs. If you notice that your stomach has to pooch out in order for you to raise your legs up toward the ceiling, that means that your abs aren't yet strong enough to do that particular move correctly. It's kind of like trying to lift a weight that's too heavy for you - your arm can't lift it on its own, so to compensate you have to move your entire upper body in order to get the weight up. Instead, you should just use a smaller weight that you can handle. The same goes with ab exercises. Try a smaller, easier version of the move instead - one that you can do while keeping your abs tight and flat against your spine. You're not doing yourself any favors by trying to do an abdominal exercise that you're not yet ready for, because again, you won't be toning your abdominals the way you want. Start small and work your way up to the more challenging ab exercises.
- My absolute favorite tool to help me tone my abdominals is this little ball. I love it because it makes the simplest moves more challenging, while also making crunches, situps and other moves more comfortable on your back and neck. If you're used to using the larger balance ball for your crunches and situps, then I highly recommend that you try this smaller one instead because I think it's way more effective!
Bridal Fitness on Paper - Tone Your Abs on Pinterest
Quick Abs Workout | Fab Ab February | 15 Ab Exercises | Star Workout: Exercises 1 and 2 & Exercises 3 and 4 | Stand Up For Flat Abs! by Women's Health | R.I.P for abs and arms | 10 Ways to Fab Abs | Slim Your Waist | Pop Pilates Bikini Ready Abs | Flat Abs in 4 Moves! | Rocking Abs Workout