Oct 9, 2013

{Fit and Strong Day 9}: Rectus Abdominis

The ever elusive rectus abdominis.  I have been trying to let that resurface for the past decade, to no avail.  I would slim down a bit, but having defined abs is like a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.  I really long for that day when I don't have to suck in my stomach when I wear hug fitting tops or swimsuits.  Sucking in that pooch while out of the pool is no fun at all.

Maybe I'm just not trying hard enough.  And as far as I could remember, I have always hated doing crunches.  I guess the key, aside from proper diet and doing cardio exercises, is to put extra effort on working out my midsection.  But why?  I got to admit, it's a bit of wanting to look good.  On the other hand, I'd like to strengthen my core for my other sports activities and also for practical life applications. 

I'll be avoiding the crunches and sit ups totally (at least for now).  They're just not my thing, but if you can execute those well without hurting your back or neck, by all means, do those.  

On the other hand, here are my alternatives:
  • Plank - either with arms straight or the elbows are bent to support the weight.  Try holding this position for 30 seconds or more, observing proper alignment of the body.  In fact, from head to calves, it should be a straight line.
  • Belly Twister -   Start with a plank pose on a stable chair, arms straight. Bring the right knee towards the midsection, at the same time twisting the body a bit to the left. Then, straighten the right leg all the way to the back.  Do several reps then switch sides.
  • Squats - although this targets other lower body muscles such as the glutes and quads, this is also a good alternative for working out the abs. The stabilizing motion as you go down engages the rectus abdominis.  After a few reps, I am most sure you will feel your midsection "burning" or getting warmed up.
  • More exercises to try out ---> Dumbbell Exercises for the Abs, Standing Abs Exercises, Flat Abs in 4 Simple Moves
Note to self: After this 31 Days to Fit and Strong series, I'm going to try and do this:

Source: 30-Day Abs Challenge

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