Tag Archives: tone your body

Workouts to Sculpt and Tone Your Abs

Want to tone your abs, but tired of doing typical sit-ups?  There are many more exercises that can be done to sculpt your abs to the definition you want.  Various exercises target various areas of your abdominals and will allow you to see results from your upper abs, lower abs and side abs.



Lie down on your stomach.  Bend your elbows and rest on your forearms.  When you’re ready, push off the ground using your forearms and forefeet.  Keep your feet two to three inches apart during the whole plank and your back straight. Do not raise your hips.  Hold yourself up for a full minute.

Side Plank

Roll over on your right side.  Keep your legs aligned on top of one another and bend your right arm, resting on your forearm.  Push off the floor using your forearm and place your left hand on your hip.  If you’re a beginner, hold this position for 30 seconds.  As you progress, you can extend the time to 45 seconds, then even a minute.  Roll over and plank on your left side, too.  Just like the name, side planks work on your side abdominals.

Bicycle Crunch

Lie down on your back and lock your fingers behind your head.  Lift your legs up with your knees bent at a 90 degree angle.  Your shins should be horizontal in the air and perpendicular to your thighs.  Start by twisting your abdominals to the left and try to touch your right elbow to your left knee.  This requires you to move your left knee slightly in.  Next twist your abdominals to the right and try to touch your left elbow to your right knee, moving your right knee in.  Keep alternating quickly.  Do as many as you can for a minute and try not to stop.  Rest for 30 seconds to a minute before doing another minute set.

The Superman

Lie down on your stomach with your legs together and your arms outstretched above your head.  Lift your arms and legs off the floor as if you’re superman flying.  Keep your head leveled and face down to avoid straining your neck.  Start off by holding this position for 30 seconds and increase the time as you progress.

Vertical Leg Crunch

Lie down on your back with your fingers locked behind your head.  Lift your legs straight up in the air.  Using your core and not your neck muscles, lift your head and shoulders off the floor.  Do three sets of 20.  Remember you can always increase the amount you do when you don’t feel as though you’re getting as much of a workout as you did when you started.

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Build Muscle, Burn Fat, Tone Up and Lose More Weight

Sure, exercise is important for losing weight. In fact, weight loss without increased activity is impossible for many people. But the kind of exercise you do can make your weight loss even more significant. While cardio workouts are great for getting the heart pumping and the calories burning, you need to build muscle mass if you want those calories to keep flying off while you’re sitting around doing nothing. That’s why it’s important to do exercises that tone your body while you exercise.

Adding a pound of muscle mass will cause you to burn up to 50 extra calories per day, even when you’re just sitting down. Imagine how much faster you could lose weight if you replaced 10 lbs of fat with muscle? Plus, on a normal diet, you lose muscle mass along with the fat. This slows your metabolism and causes you to gain weight when you eat normally again. If you add muscle mass instead, you keep burning more calories and are more likely to keep the weight off.

Exercises like running, biking, and swimming can burn hundreds of calories per hour, but have much less benefit after the exercising is done. While they can increase muscle mass, the increase is not nearly significant as lifting weights. Weight lifting burns fat while you work out, and continues to burn after you stop. And the more weight you can lift, the more calories you’ll burn each time. This means the stronger you get; the faster you’ll burn through your fat reserves.

With many exercise programs, doing too much too quickly can be dangerous. This is especially true with weight training. Using too much weight can not only stress your muscles, it can also cause permanent damage to tendons and ligaments. Not to mention the dangers of being crushed or trapped by extreme weight. When using weight training, always start slow and build your way up. And remember to use a spotter when lifting significant amounts of weight.

Remember that weight training should not replace a cardio workout. For best results you should alternate between aerobic exercise and weight training. This gives you the benefits of both to power maximum weight loss.

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