Category: Health & Fitness
Created on Friday, 18 February 2011 00:09
Written by Sam K
So the festive period is drawing to an end, and you’re feeling really good with all the bonuses and red packets you received. Even your pockets are feeling heavier from the extra income… until you look down and realize perhaps the extra weight is coming from your paunch instead. Well, a belly is a sign of prosperity, no? Alas, the mantra health is wealth gels better with graduates from the 21st century.
Well, fret not. We’re here to help bust those tummy fats! Here are some simple exercises you can do to trim away all those extra festive goodies that have taken refuge at your mid-section.
The most basic exercise to work your tummy is the classic crunch. Simply lie flat on your back and bring your knees in to a 90 degree angle to your body. You can choose to float your feet or keep them on the floor. Now cross your hands across your chest, lift your shoulders off the floor, and land them back in a controlled manner. You’ve just completed a crunch!
Crunches are a great way to develop your upper abs. Just take note to use your abdominal muscles, and not your neck or shoulders. Keep your back straight and avoid tucking your chin in when coming up.
To add a little more challenge and work your obliques (the muscles on the sides of your stomach), do a twist to one side when coming up on the crunch.
To make sure your tummy has balanced definition, you’ll need to work your lower abs too! Reverse crunches are a great way to do this. Start by lying flat on your back and bringing your knees to a 90 degree angle to your body. Now slowly pull your knees in towards your face as close as you can, before returning them to the starting position.
As with normal crunches, be sure to do the exercises in a slow and controlled manner. It’s quality, not quantity that matters! Start easy and gradually work your way up in the number of repetitions that you can do. Remember, Rome was not built in one day. As long as you keep at it, you’ll eventually get stronger and be able to crunch out more reps.
Fitting the exercises into your schedule is not that difficult if you’re serious about your goals. The two best timings are actually in the mornings before you go to work, and the evenings after you get back. They’ll only take 10-15 minutes of your time, and I’d suggest incorporating a simple 30 minute stretching or Yoga routine in the morning to get yourself awake and energized for the day.
In the evenings, you can simply do a few quick exercises before you step in for the shower. Crunches are a fairly light workout that should not interfere with your sleep patterns, so no excuses there! Regardless of your choice of timing, try to work it into a habitual routine so you exercise regularly and frequently.
As with all fitness programmes, diet is of paramount importance as well. You are what you eat, so take in healthful foods in moderate amounts. A simple advice is to start by reducing the amount of carbohydrates you eat to only what is needed. Local food tends to be heavy in carbohydrates, so you’ll need a conscious effort to stop piling more fats on your toned abs before you can show them off!
Now that you know the way, all that’s left is to act on it. If you don’t see results at first, don’t despair! Keep at it for a month or two and you’ll gradually see improvement. So get those abs flexing today!