With my busy schedule, I often find it difficult to dedicate some time to working out. However, with a little effort, I manage to squeeze in 10 minutes a day for some much-needed strength training. Doing so has enabled me to see a big difference in my core muscles. I was also pretty amazed to discover how quickly my body responded to the exercises. These days, no matter where I am, I find a way to get a workout done, and though I don’t have the set of abs I did in my twenties, I have never looked or felt better.
Perform each exercise for 45 seconds, resting for 30 seconds between each one. Repeat each workout twice.
1. Upper Ab Crunch
Here’s how: Keep your knees bent and your feet flat on the floor. To make this exercise easier to do, place a mini exercise ball or a rolled up towel underneath your shoulder blades. Bring your hands behind your head and keep your elbows out to the sides. As you lift your upper torso, crunch your abs and lift, lifting your chin and chest a few inches higher. Return to the starting position and continue the movement for 45 seconds.
Top tip: Don’t pull on your neck. Keep your chin lifted – imagine there’s an orange between your chin and chest.
2. Oblique Squeeze
Here’s how: Lie down on your back. Bend your knees and lift them over your hips. Place a mini exercise ball or a rolled up towel between your knees. Place your hands behind your head, elbows out to the side. Lift your shoulders off the floor, crunching your abs, then take your right elbow to the middle of the ball. Release and immediately repeat on the other side, taking your left elbow to the middle of the ball. Continue to alternate sides for 45 seconds.
Top tip: Use your abs to lift your torso and refrain from pulling on your neck.
3. Half Teaser
Here’s how: Lie on your back and extend your legs over your hips. Keeping them straight. Extend your arms on the floor behind your head, holding a mini exercise ball or a rolled up towel. Lift your upper body, taking your arms overhead, crunching your abs. Take the ball toward your toes, then lower and repeat.
Top tip: When doing this exercise move your upper body slowly and with control. Focus on engaging your abs.
4. Leg Drops
Here’s how: Lie on your back. Extend your legs over your hips, keeping them straight. Place a mini exercise ball or a rolled up towel between your knees. Take your hands behind your head, elbows out to the side. Lift your shoulders up, keeping them there throughout the exercise. Lower your legs to a 45-degree angle (right before your back begins to arch) then bring them back up over your hips and repeat.
Top tip: Pull your belly in as much as possible and keep your back flat on the floor.