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6 Fat-Melting Ab Workouts You Can Do Right At Home

Tone your middle with these core-sculpting circuits from fitness pros.


By Ashley Mateo, Prevention

Fact: Your midsection is one of the toughest areas of your body to tone (sorry, but it’s true!), mostly because abs are really made in the kitchen. In other words, what you eat is going to have more of a visible effect than how many crunches you do. But the good news is, when you pair a healthy diet with the right ab exercises, you won’t believe what you can uncover.

Those six-pack abs you want to see are actually your rectus abdominis, and that’s the main muscle you want to strengthen. But “a lot of people feel like targeted abs training is so tough because they haven’t developed proper strength in their core,” says Adam Rosante, a certified personal trainer and author of The 30-Second Body. “And when you work to bring up any weak muscle group, it’s going to feel like a struggle.”

Working your whole core is crucial, because “the role of the core is to keep your spine safe and stabilized while your extremities are in motion,” says Michele Olson, PhD, a professor of sport science at Huntingdon College in Montgomery, AL. “The stronger it is, the safer your spine”—and the more capable you’ll be in performing different exercises that help you tone all over.

If you want to lose belly fat and sculpt some abs, simply doing sit-ups and crunches isn’t going to cut it. “Once you add in one or more different moves, you really start to challenge your abs,” says Olson. “Abs exercises can be tweaked over and over from traditional moves to planks to Pilates moves to yoga moves. There are so many to choose from!”

Get started with these trainer-approved ab workouts you can do right at home.



1

The Total-Body Ab Workout

Plank Like a Pro

Time Required: 20 minutes

Equipment needed: moderately heavy kettlebell (roughly 10 to 15 pounds), sliders or small towels, chair

How to do it: Perform each move below for 30 seconds, then rest for 15 seconds. Complete 3 to 4 sets:
  1. Plank variations (do a different one for each set)
  2. Hollow body hold
  3. Dead bug
  4. Plank knee tuck
  5. Body saw
  6. Kettlebell single-leg deadlift
  7. Kettlebell squat to chair
Why it works: “An excellent core program does not include hundreds of crunches; you should not just train the abs,” says Sarah Gawron, an AFAA-certified trainer at Epic Hybrid Training and Solace in New York City. “A great deal of core training or abdominal work consists of doing isometric holding exercises, like a plank. And a major function of your core is preventing movement, so you want to focus on strengthening those stabilizer muscles through rotation, anti-rotation, flexion, and extension.”



2

Cardio Ab Workout

Pilates The Hundred

Time required: 45 minutes

Equipment needed: treadmill

How to do it:

  1. Walk or jog on the treadmill for 5 to 8 minutes to warm up; then walk or jog at an easy pace at a zero grade for 60 seconds, followed by 60 seconds at a 7 percent incline. Repeat 10 times for a total of 20 minutes.
  2. Perform the Pilates 100 (see above)
  3. Hold a forearm plank for 30 to 60 seconds
  4. Perform hip lifts for 30 seconds
  5. Perform side plank hip dips for 30 seconds on each side
  6. Repeat moves 2 to 5 two more times
Why it works: “Doing intervals burns more calories in 20 minutes than in 30 minutes of steady-state cardio,” says Olson. “And these abs exercises hit all the muscle groups in the abdominal wall.”



3

20-Minute At-Home Ab Circuit

The Perfect Ab Bicycle

Time required: 20-minutes

Equipment needed: a bench, box, or chair

How to do it: Perform each move below for 45 seconds. Rest for 15 seconds between moves. Once you’ve completed all 5 moves, that’s 1 round. Do 4 total rounds.
  1. Step ups
  2. V-ups
  3. Bicycle crunches (see
  4. Plank
  5. Sprint in place
Why it works: “These moves raise your heart rate and burn fat while targeting all your ab muscles, from your rectus abdominis (both the upper and lower sections to your obliques) to your transverse abdominis, or deep inner core,” says Rosante.



4

Countdown to Ab Workout

Fit in 10: 30-Day Belly Fix - Dead Bug Into Reverse Crunch

Time required: 25 minutes

Equipment needed: none

How to do it:

  1. Jump rope for 3 to 5 minutes to warm up
  2. Perform high knees for 30 seconds, then jumping jacks for 30 seconds; repeat for 5 rounds
  3. Do 30 seconds of bicycles, followed by 30 seconds of spider plank; repeat
  4. Perform high knees for 30 seconds, then jumping jacks for 30 seconds; repeat for 4 rounds
  5. Do 30 seconds of dead bugs, followed by 30 seconds of plank jacks; repeat
  6. Perform high knees for 30 seconds, then jumping jacks for 30 seconds; repeat for 3 rounds
  7. Repeat 30 seconds of each abs exercise above
Why it works: “The cardio intervals break up the ab work here, and even the abs exercises keep you moving,” says Olson. “Because the moves aren’t static, you burn more and more calories.”



5

Ab Toning Towel Workout

Belly Flattening Workout: Pike

Time required: 15 minutes

Equipment needed: a towel

How to do it: Perform each move for 60 seconds before moving on to the next. Rest for one minute in, then repeat the circuit three more times.
  1. Pike up (see it performed above, but swap in a towel to glide your feet forward)
  2. Toe touch hold with alternating leg lifts
  3. High plank alternating knee to elbow
Why it works: “The most important thing when doing abs is to concentrate on squeezing the muscle group targeted, so you get the most out of every movement,” says Adrian Williams, a training manager at Tone House in New York City. “These three moves target your top, middle, and lower parts of your abs, plus the obliques and lower back, giving you most bang for your buck in just three exercises.”




6

Better Posture Ab Workout

Towel Workout: Mountain Climber

Time required: 10 minutes

Equipment needed: sliding plate

How to do it:

  1. Plank rotations for 20 seconds
  2. Hold a plank for 20 seconds
  3. Rest for 20 seconds, then repeat steps 1 to 3 four times
  4. Sliding plate burpees for 40 seconds; rest for 20 seconds and repeat four times
  5. Mountain climbers for 30 seconds
  6. Up downs for 20 seconds
  7. Rest for 20 seconds, then repeat steps 5 to 6 four times
  8. Pistol crunches for 20 seconds
  9. Lying ankle taps for 20 seconds
  10. Rest for 20 seconds, then repeat steps 8 to 9 four times
  11. Plank push ups for 20 seconds
  12. Plank leg lifts for 20 seconds
  13. Rest for 30 seconds, then repeat steps 11 to 12 four times
Why it works: “This is one of my favorite ab workouts from my new FIT app,” says Emily Skye, an Australian trainer and creator of the FIT Program. “Not only will this routine help tone your tummy, but it will increase strength and improve posture. It’s also important to keep your back straight throughout this workout to give your body extra support.”
ab workout at home, home workouts, abs workout, ab exercises

See more at: Prevention
  1. A 20-Minute Arm Workout You Can Do at Home
  2. 6 Great Workouts to Try If You Have Diabetes
  3. How Brie Larson Got Super-Fit for Captain Marvel

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U.S. Daily News: 6 Fat-Melting Ab Workouts You Can Do Right At Home
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