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8 Core Workouts For The Attractive Body Shape

8 Core Workouts For The Attractive Body Shape

Other than having great toned abdominals that look good on the beach, having a strong core helps prevent injuries, as most movement starts at the centre and moves outwards. This means that if you have a strong core, it will ensure your general movements are strong and pain-free. A strong core helps to relieve back pain, as this pain is usually caused by a weak core.

Having a strong core will also help protect your organs since your core muscles surround these organs along with your nervous system. Strong muscles will allow vital organs, such as the heart, to work to their full capacity.

Core is important when it comes to posture. Having a strong core will allow you to stand, sit, walk, and run with the muscle support needed to maintain good posture and prevent back pain or difficulties.

With all these points in mind, here are 8 great core exercises that you can follow to get yourself on the road to a much-needed optimal core.

If you want to know more about weight loss, you can’t miss the following article that provides all useful tips you need:

Weight Loss Plan And Program: Create Your Own One

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1. Plank

One of the best core exercises out there, the plank concentrates on the muscles running all the way through your body.

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    image via popsugar.com
    1. Lie on your front and gently raise your body onto your elbows, making sure elbows are shoulder-width apart.
    2. Slowly raise yourself onto your tip toes and hold.
    3. Beginner: Try holding a plank for as long as possible. Aim for 30 seconds to a minute and increase this over each workout.
    4. Advanced: Once you’ve mastered a basic plank, try different plank variations, including side planks — these are great for challenging your core muscles.

    2. Side Jack Knife

    This exercise is great for your abs and will give you an effective workout for your core muscles. It really squeezes your obliques as you lift your legs.

    sidejacknife12x8__landscape
      image via menshealth.co.uk
      1. Lie on your side with your legs nearly straight and slightly raised off the floor.
      2. Lift your torso off the floor and keep your left forearm on the floor for balance. Hold your other hand behind your right ear, with your elbow pointing towards your feet.
      3. Lift your legs towards your torso while keeping your torso stationary. Feel the stretch on the side of your body and pause for a few seconds.
      4. Slowly lower your leg.
      5. Beginner: Repeat this for 3 sets of 10 reps before changing sides.
      6. Advanced: Try a more advanced version that gets you using both top and bottom abdominals at the same time.

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      3. Squats

      Core workouts that include squats are essential. Not only do squats help with stability and mobility, they work the muscles through the entire body from the abdominals downwards, creating a great all-round optimal exercise.

      squats
        1. Start with your feet hip-width apart, keeping your back straight with shoulders pulled back, then straighten your arms out in front of you.
        2. Slowly bend your knees and push your butt out and down as though you’re about to sit down on a chair.
        3. Lower yourself so that your thighs are parallel to the floor, your knees are positioned slightly over your ankles, and your head and shoulders are aligned over your knees.
        4. Using your leg and butt muscles, slowly push up, keeping your weight evenly distributed throughout, and come back to a standing position.
        5. Beginner: start off with a repetition of 3 sets of 10 squats and increase the amount of squats in each set by 1 squat each day.
        6. Advanced: To make this move more difficult, add handheld weights, keeping them at your side throughout the exercise. Increase weights for more intensity.

        4. Arm, Leg, and Chest Raises

        This move really concentrates on your core muscles and allows them to work at their full potential.

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          image via positivemed.com
          1. Lie on the floor, face down with arms stretched out and legs straight.
          2. Slowly raise both arms up as far as you can and at the same time lift up both legs.
          3. Keep this position for a few seconds and then release your arms and legs back down to the floor.
          4. Beginner: Do 3 sets of 10 reps trying to increase the amount of time you’re engaging the core muscles.
          5. Advanced: Try adding a roll into the exercise by engaging the core on your front and then rolling carefully on to your back with legs and arms above you. This will work your core muscles even further.

          5. Quadruped

          This move tightens your abdominal muscles and improves balance.

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          Quadruped
            image via popsugar.com
            1. Start on your hands and knees. Place your hands directly below your shoulders, align your head and neck with your back, and tighten your abdominal muscles.
            2. Raise your right arm off the floor and reach ahead. Stay in this position for 5 seconds. Lower your right arm and repeat with your left arm.
            3. Raise your right leg off the floor, making sure to use your muscles to maintain balance. Hold for 5 seconds and lower your leg to the floor. Repeat with the left leg.
            4. Beginner: Repeat full arm and leg movements 5 times each, raising the amount of time you hold positions to add a challenge.
            5. Advanced: Hold a weight in your hand for an added challenge or raise both the opposite arm and leg together to work the core muscles more.

            6. Abdominal Hold

            While it may be tough at first, this move will help you build strength in your core.

            abdominal-hold
              image via muscledose.com
              1. Make sure you have a sturdy chair.
              2. Sit tall on the edge of the chair and place your hands on the chair down beside you, holding on to the sides.
              3. Tighten your abs and gently lift your toes about 2-4 inches off the ground and lift your butt off the chair.
              4. Beginner: Hold this position for as long as you can — aim for 5 -10 seconds.
              5. Advanced: Try challenging yourself by holding for up to a minute or add a stable weight to your lap to create added resistance and work the abdominals even more.

              7. Side Crunches

              Side crunches as part of your core workouts are a good way of targeting your mid-section.

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                image via gym-inspiration.com
                1. Lie on your left side with your legs lying on top of each other.
                2. Bend your knees so that they are at a rough 90-degree angle.
                3. Begin by moving your right hand to your right ear with the elbow pointing up. Start to move up and over to the side slightly until you can feel the burn in your obliques. Repeat on opposite the side.
                4. Beginner: Do 10 reps 3 times on both sides, increasing as you feel ready to to keep your abs challenged.
                5. Advanced: Try these advanced side crunches to get an extra burn.

                8. Using a Stability Ball

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                  Simple exercises using a stability ball can activate twice as many core muscles as classic belly toners like crunches and sit-ups, so it’s well worth investing one.

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                  For beginners, this core workout is a really great introduction to using a stability ball. Incorporate this into the rest of the workout or pick and choose certain exercises if you have time constraints:

                  This is great for more advanced stability ball exercises, working your core to the maximum:

                  Tips When Doing Your Core Workouts

                  • Write down a schedule of your workouts as this will help you to keep your motivation high. Start with a weekly or monthly timetable of each daily workout you do. Make sure you show exactly how many reps you will do for each exercise and show a progression throughout the week or month by adding weights and intensity.
                  • Be aware of your limits — if you feel pain at any stage, then stop the exercise immediately. Start easy and work your way up as this will make the workouts a lot more beneficial and will help you to avoid injuries.
                  • Always drink plenty of water when doing workouts as you can get easily dehydrated.
                  • Talk with your doctor if you suffer from back pain or are pregnant as these exercises may not be suitable.

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                  Jenny Marchal

                  Freelance Writer

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                  Published on May 3, 2019

                  8 Wonderful Weight Loss Tracker Apps: Achieve Your Fitness Goals Fast

                  8 Wonderful Weight Loss Tracker Apps: Achieve Your Fitness Goals Fast

                  Are you frustrated by why on earth you can’t lose any weight? Have you ever wondered if you don’t actually know how many calories you eat in a day?

                  How much exercise do you ACTUALLY get? Why does nothing seem to be working!?

                  If any of those questions sound familiar, then read on. Because I am about to show you some of the best tools you can use to pull yourself out of that rut!

                  If you can relate, I’ve been there too. In fact, if it helps your situation at all, I think most of us have at some point or another. Most people feel like, at some point or another, they reach a plateau. It’s that exasperating place that seems to keep us from moving forward (or is moving us slowly).

                  How can we break past this point? How can we start to see results and have the momentum to keep moving forward? The answer is simple:

                  To have a game-plan and know exactly what is going on inside your body.

                  Let me put it this way, in your business, do you go into work figuring you’ll find something to do once you get there? Probably not. You know exactly what needs to get done and you have a game-plan (a task sheet or to-do-list) to get you there. You might even have a few different “games” you play with yourself to make your work more enjoyable or listen to a motivational speaker to make sure your morale is up.

                  The same goes for fitness. If you really want to excel at your fitness goal, then you need to have a game-plan for success. You need to know what will keep you motivated, how to simplify things, how to be more efficient at your goals, and even find what you enjoy the most.

                  If you’re blindly trying to chase your goals, then you probably feel about as hopeless as a carpenter with a butter-knife. So, it’s time to stock your toolbelt for success!

                  I am about to show you the top fitness apps that will be game-changers for you. From nutrition trackers to step counters, these apps are sure to set you on the fast track to your fitness goals.

                  Keep reading to find the apps which might just shoot you past your plateau and into the lifestyle you dream of.

                  1. MyFitnessPal

                    When it comes to favorite fitness apps, this one takes the cake (The Gluten-Free, Sugar-Free, Vegan cake that is).

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                    MyFitnessPal is the best all around calorie counter that I have found on the market. This app is free, and has almost all the calorie counting resources available to you. Not only does it seamlessly estimate the daily calories needed to hit your goal, but it also gives you the methods to track it.

                    Just enter the ingredients into each meal and it will add up how many calories you eat. Indulged in a burrito? No problem! Just scan the barcode and it will enter that in for you.

                    Going a step beyond that, this app also tracks your macros (according to your own customized goals) and nutrients.

                    While that all seems impressive enough, this app also tracks exercise calories and can sync to Fitbit, MapmyRun, and other apps to measure your exact energy ratio.

                    If you want a one-stop map to success then this is it! This will not only help you develop a gameplan, but will also create a flexible plan to get you there.

                    Get MyFitness Pal here!

                    2. Fitbit

                      I know you’ve already heard about this app before, and for good reason. Fitbit has been helping thousands step their way to health since it first came out.

                      While investing in a Fitbit may not be cheap, I believe it to be well worth the investment.

                      Fitbit will track your total amounts of steps each day. For those of you who are competitive, this is the perfect app to keep you moving throughout the day.

                      This app can also sync with other fitness apps, like MyFitnessPal, to measure your exact energy expenditure each day. It’s a keeper for sure.

                      Get Fitbit here!

                      3. MapMyRun

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                        This is another one for the competitive, beginner, or exercise enthusiast alike. MapMyRun measures the distance that you run and even tracks your route. And, you can sync your daily results with MyFitnessPal to keep track of your daily calorie burn.

                        If you want to go at it with a friend, you can challenge them in competitions that are sure to keep you both moving!

                        Once, my boyfriend (Now Husband) ran for 2 miles just before midnight to beat me in a competition that was ending the next day. Talk about motivation!

                        MapMyRun is perfect for those who like to challenge themselves, love to be apart of a fitness community, or want a place for friends to hold them accountable to their goals.

                        Get MapMyRun here!

                        4. Zombies, Run!

                          Are you having trouble pulling away from entertainment to go out and run? Then why not combine the two?

                          ZombieRun is a fun app that is sure to get you moving if you are someone who is motivated by a good time. In fact, you might even have such a blast you will forget that you are exercising!

                          This app takes you through a story-line makes you the hero. Each level will present a new challenge to help you progress and keep things exciting.

                          And don’t even worry about your pre-workout. Imagining you are the hero in the story will be enough to keep your adrenaline pumping on it’s own.

                          Just be sure not to move too slow or the “Zombs” (As we runners affectionately call them) might catch you!

                          Get ZombiesRun here!

                          5. Prepear

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                            Are you tired of sitting down for hours and trying to strategize what to eat? This app helps cut this time in a quarter.

                            Simply add online recipes into your weekly meal plan (breakfast, lunch, and dinner) and it will organize all the ingredients you will need into a shopping list.

                            With all your meal planning in one organized area, it will be easy to find which meal you plan to make for the day. This will keep your healthy recipes delicious. You will seriously never have to fret about meal planning again!

                            Bye Bye paper shopping lists! And Bye-Bye fast food! You won’t be needing that anymore!

                            Get Prepear here!

                            6. Strava

                              If walking is your health resolution, this one might be for you!

                              Strava was actually sent to me by one of my clients for me to track his daily walking. This app is sure to get you into healthy habits that you enjoy. In fact, you might start losing weight before realizing that you’ve even been exercising.

                              This app enables you to track your trails and mileage, take pictures, and invite friends to join. It is a keeper for beginners and hikers alike.

                              Get Strava here!

                              7. Aaptiv

                                If you find yourself at the gym and not sure what to do, then this app might be for you.

                                Aptive gives you workouts to do and instructs you how to do them.

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                                While there’s nothing quite like the accountability of a personal trainer, Aptive is a great way to be guided through exercises without having to dish out tons of money.

                                The online instructors will guide you through the movements and keep you focused on finishing the workout. This app is sure to make you a gym rat in no time!

                                Get Aaptiv here!

                                8. Freeletics

                                  Here’s one for those of you always on the move! Freeletics is an incredible app designed for people who just don’t have the time (or motivation) to drive down to the gym.

                                  Freeletics provides online workouts designed specifically from bodyweight. No equipment is needed!

                                  You will be surprised at what a great workout you can get without any equipment.

                                  That’s right, you work-travellers — Say goodbye to your excuses because this app is bringing the trainer to you!

                                  Get Freeletics here!

                                  The Bottom Line

                                  These 8 apps are sure to revolutionize your fitness goals. Guesswork will no longer be a part of your fitness journey. These apps are like carrying professionals around in your pocket all day!

                                  Get ready to be motivated, informed, and ready to start achieving your dreams! Good luck on your fitness journey!

                                  Featured photo credit: Marion Michele via unsplash.com

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