As a fitness novice you must be surely looking for ways of whipping up your abs and getting them toned. Toning your abs is not an easy job; it takes regular hard work and discipline. But hey! The rewards are worth it. An attractive, fit and lean body and decreased risk of cardiovascular disease, hypertension, and in fact any degenerative disease linked to obesity and overweight.
Most ab-toning exercises are simple but yet they help you to build stamina, stability and endurance. A great tip that you can keep in mind: ab-toning exercises should be done properly and the key to getting results is the quality of movement.
How to get your abs toned? You do not need any expertise or fancy expensive equipment or a personal trainer to build toned abs. However, it does help to know a little bit about which muscle group to target for exercise.
Muscle Groups in the Abdominal Region
To get toned abs, you need to work on all three muscle groups, the upper abs, the lower abs, and the obliques. The upper abs muscle group lies above your navel and lower abs below. The upper-abs muscle group is used when you lift your head, neck, and shoulders off the ground as in an ab-crunch or sit-up. The lower-abs muscle group is flexed when exercises to the back and spine are performed. They also retain the weight of the organs in the abdomen. They need to be in good shape always, not just when they are tensed. They are worked as we bend down or lift heavy objects. The oblique muscles run across your torso. The obliques work when the torso is twisted. Now, the obliques are very important muscles that influence the appearance of your toned body. The more you work on your obliques, the faster are your results, you get more toned obliques, and the slimmer your waistline will appear to be.
How to Optimize Your Workout
Any exercise derives maximum benefit only when there is a warm-up preceding it. Your heart needs to get pumping to help more blood to flow to your muscles. This, consequently, lessens chances of muscle injury. A brisk walk or jog, or maybe even dancing to your favorite song for two to three minutes provides for a good warm-up session. Now, you can work out specific muscle groups slowly and carefully. It pays to repeat the exercises. However, concentrate on the form rather than speed.
Some Easy Exercises to Get You in Shape
Lie on your back, lift your right knee to your chest and try to touch your left elbow while holing your hands behind you head and simultaneously lifting your head and neck off the ground. Do not pull at the neck. Repeat on the other side.
Place yourself on your hands and knees. Raise one arm and the opposite leg and stretch it as far possible away from the body. Return to starting position and repeat on the other side.
Sit on a stability ball with both knees bent at 90 degrees. Hold a medicine ball in your hands. Start at your right hip. Rotate your trunk first and then lift and twist your arms to take the ball above your left shoulder. Return to starting position and then repeat.
Perform 10-15 repetitions of each exercise and go from one to the next with a quick rest between exercises (5 to 10 sec.). By the way, this is not an exhaustive list. There are many other exercises that can help you tone your abs.
Finish your workout and cool down your body with a total body stretch. This sends a rush of feel-good hormones (endorphins) through your body.
A Flex Belt May Help You Get the Toned Abs Faster
Well, if you are too busy or tired for the regular workout, it is a good idea to use a flex belt that uses a patented technology to get your muscles to contract by stimulating your nerves. The belt is designed to target all the abdominal muscle groups. Wearing it for approximately 30 minutes a day is an effective substitute for a good workout. The belt can be worn anywhere and at any time during the day, at home, while watching TV, etc. The flex belt uses three gel pads that cover the abdominal muscle groups and the obliques. The medical grade pads that are pre-fixed send out signals to the nerves and they cause the muscles to contract and relax. Eat right, exercise well, and use this belt whenever you need help. You can read our flex belt review here.
Some More Tips for Building Toned Muscles
Include sound nutritional habits into your lifestyle. In addition to developing fabulous toned muscles, it is recommended that you decrease body fat percentage to remain healthy. Do not work more than one circuit of each muscle group if you are a beginner. Alternating the muscle groups gives time for recuperation and enhances benefits. Do not overwork yourself; your muscles need to repair themselves after the damage during exercise. Go for quality over quantity.
With regular, focused and quality exercises it is easy to move from flab to fab and possess those much-envied toned abs.
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