Build your core with these workouts


How to build a 6 pack is one of the most frequently asked question. Include one of these abs workouts and combined with a good nutrition you can obtain an aesthetic 6 pack.

Truth is that if you want to have good looking abs you must train as hard as any other muscle group AND have a low body fat.

The abs that you want most probably are not the ones of a skinny guy.

Are these the abs you want?

If you don’t genetically look like the guy above you most likely won’t be able to reach and maintain this body.

You probably want something more like this guy:

These are some well-developed abdominal muscles

The idea is that if you want to have nice visible aesthetic abs you must:

  • train your abs like every other muscle
  • have low body fat
  • develop your overall muscle mass

The abdominal muscle is not a big muscle group and they don’t require a lot of volume to burn them.

Normally, a circuit of 4 exercises repeated 3-4 times is more than enough.

The abs are responsible for our body stability and they are used throughout the entire day. Because of this, your abs get used to your day-to-day effort and they will not grow anymore, just like any other muscle.

That is why it is important to train the abs consistently in the gym at least 2-3 times a week. You need to give them a reason to grow, a reason to adapt to the new situations.

I’ve compiled down below 3 abs workouts that train your entire core.

Choose the routine suitable to your experience. You can even combine them.

”Beginner”IntermediateAdvanced

1. Hanging knee raises (vertical chair) -10 repetitions

How to:

  • Position your body in the vertical chair, rest your forearms on the pads.
  • Press your back against the pad of the machine and let your arms support your body, extend the legs.
  • There are usually hand grips as well as foot bars to step and get into the position easier.
  • Allow your legs to dangle and as you exhale lift your knees towards your chest.
  • While inhaling, return your legs to get back into the initial position.
  • The motion should be executed slowly and controlled.Common mistakes:
  • partially lifted knees will work mostly the hip flexors – lift your knees to your chest and squeeze your abs
  • swinging your knees will reduce the tension on your abs – execute the movement slowly and controlled
  • keeping your upper body loose will have your shoulders under tension – keep your upper body (especially your back) tight

2. Crunches – 15 repetitions

How to:

  • Lay on your back and bend your knees at 90 degrees angle.
  • Place your hands on the sides of your head. Do not lock your fingers.
  • Push down your lower back and while you exhale start rolling your shoulders off the floor.
  • Your shoulders should move off the floor about 5 inches while keeping your lower back in touch with the ground.
  • At the top of the movement squeeze your abdomen as hard as possible.
  • As you inhale begin to come down slowly to the initial position.
  • Execute the movement slowly and controlled.

3. Barbell side bend – 15 repetitions on each side

How to:

  • Stand up straight hold a dumbbell in your right hand and fix your left hand on your hips or behind your head.
  • Place your feet at the shoulder width. Keep your body straight and tight.
  • Bend your upper body to the left using only your waist as you breathe in.
  • Straighten back your body to the initial position as you breathe out.
  • Repeat for the desired number of repetitions
  • Switch the dumbbell to the other hand and execute the same movement to the right side.

4. Knee supported Plank – 1 minute

How to:

  • Lay down with your forearms flat on the floor. Your upper arm should be perpendicular to the ground.
  • Engage your core and lift your body while maintaining your forearms and knees in touch with the floor.
  • Keep your back straight throughout the execution.
  • Execute the exercises without pause.Repeat the circuit 4 times with 1 min break between them.

1. Hanging legs raises – 10 repetitions

How to:

  • Hang from a pull up bar and extend your hands and legs
  • While you exhale, raise your legs until they form a 90 degree angle with your torso
  • Release the legs to the initial position as you inhale

2. Wide legs split crunches (frog crunches) – 15 repetitions

How to:

  • Lay flat on the floor
  • Bend at the knees and place your outer thighs by the floor (or mat) as you make the soles of your feet touch each other.
  • Now try pushing both soles and bringing them up as near you as possible while you keep the outer thighs on the floor (or at least almost touching it).
  • As you exhale flatten your lower back to the floor while curling the torso upwards. Tip: This will be like performing the first 1/4 movement of a sit up. Hold at the top position for a second.
  • As you inhale, slowly lower back to the starting position.

3. Side crunches + side plank – 15 repetitions + 30 seconds

How to:

  • Lay on your side (left or right).
  • Support your body on your legs and your forearm or hand.
  • Straighten your body while squeezing the obliques. Keep your back straight
  • Lower your hips to the initial position
  • When finished with one side jump directly into 30 s side plank
  • Start on your side with your feet together and one forearm directly below your shoulder.
  • Contract your core and raise your hips until your body is in a straight line from head to feet.
  • Hold the position without letting your hips drop for the allotted time for each set, then repeat on the other side.
  • Switch sides when done

4. Planks – 60 seconds

How to:

  • Lie with your face down on the floor. Put your forearms on the ground with your elbow directly under your shoulder joint.
  • Raise up on your toes so that only your forearms touch the ground. Keep your body straight and tight.
  • Squeeze your abdominal muscles.
  • Breathe normally

Execute the exercises without break, in a circuit fashion.

Repeat the circuit 4 times with 1 min break between them.

1. Hanging knee raises (weighted) – 10 repetitions

How to:

  • Hang from a pull up bar and extend your hands and legs. Hold a weight between your legs to increase the difficulty.
  • While you exhale, raise your legs until they form a 90 degree angle with your torso. Keep your legs straight.
  • Release the legs to the initial position as you inhale.

2. V ups – 15 repetitions

How to:

  • Lay on your back, facing up and extend your hands behind your head
  • Simultaneously raise your feet and your upper body and reach for your toes with your hands.
  • Keep your legs and back straight and your core tight
  • Slowly lower your upper back and legs to the initial position

3. Around the worlds – 10 circles

How to:

  • Hang from a pull up bar and extend your hands and legs.
  • Raise your legs and move them so you create a circle in front of you.

4. Planks – as long as possible

How to:

  • Lay with your face down on the floor. Put your forearms on the ground with your elbow directly under your shoulder joint.
  • Raise up on your toes so that only your forearms touch the ground. Keep your body straight and tight.
  • Squeeze your abdominal muscles.
  • Breathe normally
  • Execute the exercises without pause.

Execute the exercises without break, in a circuit fashion.

Repeat the circuit 4 times with 1 min pause between them.

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