Looking to tone your abs? Want to strengthen your core but don’t have a lot of time every day? With today’s busy schedules and bustling lifestyles it is more important than ever to get sufficient exercise, burn off that stress, and keep yourself fit. With just ten minutes a day you should be able to accomplish those tasks on the to-do list with a high intensity, yoga-inspired abdominal workout.
#1: Rope-climb (x 50)
Lie flat on your back and bring your knees toward you, keeping your feet flat on the ground. (Your feet, knees, and hips will be in an upside-down V-shape.) Reach both arms out toward your knees, and pretend there is a rope extending from your belly-button up to the ceiling. Slowly lift your head and shoulders off of the ground as you move your arms to simulate pulling yourself up the rope. Twist a little bit from side to side as you “climb” and you’ll really feel the pull in your abs. Count each “pull” until you have pulled fifty times, then give yourself a minute to rest.
#2: Plank Position
Start out on all-fours, then extend your legs behind you so you are at the top of a push-up position. (Your arms are straight, holding your body up off the floor, and your legs are extended behind you.) Hold this position for fifteen seconds, breathing evenly through your nose, and be sure to focus your strength on your abdominal muscles. Now rotate to your right so that your body is sideways, your feet are together with your left foot on top of your right, and your right arm is holding up all of your body weight. Hold this for fifteen seconds, then return to the push-up position. Hold the push-up position for another fifteen seconds, roll your body so that your left arm is holding you up, stay here for fifteen seconds, and then return to push-up position. Hold in the push-up position for another fifteen seconds, then lower yourself back to all-fours. Now give yourself another break – you deserve it!
#3: Bicycle Crunches (x 50)
Like the rope-climb, this is an exercise to get your abs going. Lie flat on your back again and put your hands behind your head. Now, use your stomach muscles to raise your torso and shoulders off the floor, bring your left knee towards your chest, and touch your right elbow to your left knee (or get close to that). Now switch: move your left leg back toward the floor and your right knee to your chest (as if you’re riding a bike), and twist your left elbow to your right knee without putting your head back on the floor. Repeat this fifty times (each elbow-to-knee touch counts as one), and then lie back on the floor for a minute.
Repeat this set of exercises twice for a quick, effective core workout that you can do anytime of the day to balance exercise and mental health with your busy schedule.