If you’re like us, you’re stuck in the house and, although you never really used that gym pass you paid good money for, you could totally go for a mean workout right now. It would be nice to escape the home-schooling, home-working, home-confined lifestyle for a bit and, not to mention, those added calories from home-snacking could really benefit from a trip to the gym. For now, though, it’s important to focus on the things we can control so, in the meantime, why not create a space at home? I mean, in the past few months we’ve turned our living rooms into classrooms, our kitchens into workspaces, and our dining rooms into arts & crafts centers. Adding a gym to the bedroom makes complete sense.
Now, some unshapely person who is not you might say … “But I don’t have any weights or equipment at home”, but you know better. You know you don’t need equipment. You have your own bodyweight to work with and miscellaneous household items to use. You’re a housebound hero who has decided to dedicated an area of your home to be used as a fitness center. All you need, admittedly, is some guidance. Well, like any good sidekick, UPSY is here to help. Here are five exercises devoted to a muscle group we think can always benefit from a little sculpting – our abs.
- Starfish Crunches
This is a variation of the traditional crunch, but this one uses all of your limbs. All you have to do is lay on the floor as if you were going to make a snow angel (it’s important not to fall asleep during this part). Then, bring your legs straight up until you feel your abs tighten. Next, lift your shoulders and arms up towards your legs and try to get your hands as close to your calves, ankles or feet as possible. Three sets of 15 repetitions is a good start.
- Figure 8s
Lay on the floor with your arms flat down by your side and your legs straight. Then use your hips to lift your legs up in the air, but not all the way up. Now, using your legs, start drawing a figure 8 in the air with your legs. It sounds easy at first, but trust me, it’s not. Also, don’t worry if your 8 starts to lose its figure after a while.
- Russian Twists
These will be Putin you in shape quickly! All you have to do is sit in an upright position with your legs straight out in front of you (make sure your back is also straight). Traditionally, you would hold something weighted during this exercise, so if you have dumbbells or something similar, you should use it. Now, twist your torso to each side, making sure to do a full reach to the left and to the right. This exercise actually targets your obliques which is a perfect complement to your overall ab workout.
- Seated Circles
Stay in the same upright-seated position. Now, plant your hands palm-down to support yourself as you raise your legs, keeping them together with your toes pointed. Start making circles in the air with your legs. For added benefits, perform the circle in a clockwise motion first for 20 seconds and then switch to a counter-clockwise motion for another 20 seconds.
- Plank and Plank +
The plank is a favorite for working the abdominal area. Start off by lying flat and face-down on the floor. Then, using you forearms as support, lift your torso up. Next, keeping your eyes looking straight ahead, raise your hips high enough so that you’re balancing on your toes. While in this position, it’s important to keep your back straight and not to lift your torso too high or your abs will stop doing all the work. Now, once you’ve mastered this position, it’s time to add another level to your plank. Using your hands, push yourself up so that your arms are straight and your elbows are locked (similar to a push-up position). After 10 seconds, move back down to the original plank position. Try adding 5-10 seconds after one set until you reach 30 seconds.
That’s it! 5 ab sculpting workouts you can do “ab-home” whenever you want and in your pajamas - It’s your gym, so it’s your rules. These abdominal exercises are also great for strengthening the muscles around your spine which helps improve posture, balance, and stability. They can also help reduce lower back pain and inflammation. If you’re looking to add some cardio into your fitness regimen, try some burpees, jumping jacks, or rope skips. These are sure to get your blood flowing and give you a great boost of energy.