It's that time of year where summer is just on the horizon and our thoughts start turning to how we look and feel about our bodies - Lets face it we all want to look good in a bikini and have flat stomachs to show off our midriff. As a lot of you will know, especially if you follow me on Instagram that I have become quite the gym bunny and what started off as a year ago as exercising as quick fix to tone up for my holidays, has now become a way of life. Not only do I love working out and going to the gym, but I love seeing changes in my body that have come though hard work and dedication. This year I really wanted to focus on seeing more change in my body and be in a position where I can push myself, see more progress and help others along the way too. Over the last few weeks I've had so many of you come to me asking what work outs I'm currently doing and to share how I'm keeping in shape here on my blog. However if truth be told, I couldn't possibly tell you in every detail what I'm doing to tone up and keep in shape as my workout routine is forever changing and its impossible to tell you in every detail in one post just what I'm doing. However I thought I would try and share with you all today my current abs routine and just what I'm doing to keep my stomach toned and flat.
Before I go into details though, it's really important to bare in mind that I am no expert, have not been trained or am no dietitian - I'm still very much learning as I go along and there is so much to learn if your wanting to change your body shape, maintain it and if your like me push yourself to make further progress. I'm lucky enough to have quite a few people around me who do know what their doing and talking about and have helped me along my way, so I want to try and share what I've learnt to help you all out too.
When it comes to working out, I try and workout at least four to five times a week, which I know may seam a lot to a lot of you especially if your just looking to introduce fitness into your life - I would say dedicating three sessions a week is a good amount to start with and then to start working your way up depending on what results you want to achieve. When it comes to abs and getting a flat stomach, I try and work on my abs at least four times a week and most of the time I will do the same routine, maybe mixing things up a little from time to time to keep things fresh; Doing the same thing all the time can become boring and repetitive. It was a good friend of mine who is a personal trainer that introduced me to this abs routine, I've been trying to complete it as much as possible since January and have seen amazing results since starting it, so its something that is definitely working for me.
Firstly I start off by warming up my body - it's so important to get your heart rate going and get your body prepared before doing any serious working out. I usually put on a really good song that's lively, makes me feel energetic and do some simple cardio to get me warmed up. This can be anything from star jumps, running on the spot and some squats quickly. Once the song is up I'm usually ready to start working on my routine. If I'm at the gym I'll always warm up on the treadmill and go for a 10 minute jog/run to get me ready for any toning sessions.
My abs routine is as follows - In one set I will complete ...
Crunches x 30
Reverse Crunches x 30 (this is where you lower your legs up and down with every regular crunch)
Sit Ups x 30
Russian Twists x 30
Bicycle Crunches x 30
Plank - Hold for one minute
Side Plank - Hold for a minute on each side
Depending on what other exercises I'm incorporating into my routine each day, I always find that this routine leaves my abs burning which can be unpleasant at first but its a pain that you grow to love. As I mentioned at the beginning of this post, I do a lot of other workouts at the gym and a lot of the classes that I take and other exercises I do incorporate a lot of abs work into them which is important to bear in mind when your trying to reach your own personal goals.
If your wanting to loose weight, then this abs routine might not be enough for you to start seeing changes you want, but balancing the right amount of cardio with toning will help you see those results much quicker. It's also really important to point out that when you start exercising it can take some time before you start noticing and seeing any real change in your body - But if you persevere and don't quit change is something you will start to see and you will feel great for it. A top tip is to take pictures weekly, as it's only when you start looking back will you see that your hard work is making a difference.
I'm sure most of you will have heard this before but keeping fit and eating healthy really do go hand in hand and the food part of living and maintaining a healthy lifestyle is still something that I'm getting to grips with. However if you can start making small changes with the foods that you eat then you will be well on your way to having that dream body of yours.
I really hope that this has helped answered any of your questions and I would love to know if your going to start this routine yourself. If there are any questions you have please let me know in the comments below or drop me an email or Tweet. I would also love to see your progress pictures, so be sure to send me them over on Instagram @sunshinesprkle as I am forever posting mine.