I try to alternate my work outs between long cardio consisting of an hour or so run or spin class or a shorter cardio session followed by a Tabata or circuit style work out with weights. During the circuit work outs I try to pick moves that target all areas of the body. One thing I feel I never get enough of are ab exercises. If I only have time to do cardio, I will do a short ab circuit like the one listed below. Only takes a few minutes but if you do this 3 x a week coupled with cardio you will see results!
- Yoga Mat
- Small Yoga Ball
Move 1: Crunches on a Ball:
- Position the yoga ball at the base of your spine right above your tail bone. Lean back all the way on to the ball with your knees bend and your feet about 6-8 inches away from your butt. Put your hands lightly behind your head with your elbows out and slowly crunch up and down on the ball. Repeat 30 x
Move 2: Jackknife Sit Up
- Lay out flat on the yoga mat with your feet stretched out and your toes pointed. Hold the yoga ball in your hands with your arms stretched straight over your head. Keeping your legs straight, use your core to left your legs toward the ceiling. Bring your arms up to meet your legs and pass the ball from your hands to between your ankles. Lower your legs to the ground with the ball between your ankles. Continue passing the ball between your hands and ankles. Repeat 30 x
Move 3: Seated Russian Twists
- Sit on the mat with your back as straight as possible. Lift your knees so your legs are in table top position and point your toes. Hold the yoga ball in your hands with your elbows out to the side. Contract your abs and slowly twist the ball from one side of your body to the other. Twist as far as you can without feeling it in your lower back. Your core should be doing all of the work. Repeat 20 x per side
Move 4: Rainbow Plank
- Get into plank position on your elbows. Using your core, dip your hips to the left and then over to the right in a “rainbow” motion. Keep your body as straight as possible while doing this move and make sure it comes from your core- you can do the move more slowly if necessary to make sure you aren’t flinging your body from side to side. Repeat 20 x per side
Move 5: Scissor Kicks
- Lay flat on your back with your legs slightly lifted and your head and shoulders off the floor. Keep your arms straight at your sides with your hands slightly lifted. Slowly flap your hands up and down while moving your legs in a scissor motion. Do this exercise for 1 minute.