When we find it difficult to get into the jeans we used to wear a couple of months ago, we realize that it’s time to start exercising. Many of us are not enthusiastic about spending hours at the gym, but recent studies have shown that even 15 minutes of exercise per day can effectively burn fat and improve your resistance, stamina, and metabolism. Try our workout plan and get toned abs for the summer season.
Not all exercises are suitable for everyone, so you should take into account your physical and medical state. Remember that workouts are most effective when combined with a healthy diet!
It is one of the best exercises for a flat belly that you can think of, as it helps you burn stomach fat easily.
Lie on your back.
Bend your knees and put your feet on the mat. Keep your feet together or keep them slightly apart.
Place your hands behind your head. Make sure that your thumbs are placed behind your ears and that your fingers support your head. Don’t interlace your fingers as it will add extra pressure on your neck.
Lift the upper part of your body off the floor. Exhale when you go up and keep your elbows wide apart. Make sure you flex your abs when doing crunches.
Go back to the initial position. Inhale on the way down.
Repeat the exercise 10 times. Do 3 sets at the beginning. Later on, you can do 4-5 or more sets during your workout.
If you want to make the workout a bit more challenging, you can raise your legs and cross your feet.
2. Side bends
This exercise will stretch and strengthen your obliques preventing the “muffin top” effect.
Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart. Raise your arms straight up over your head as you inhale.
Lower your right arm down the right side and stretch the left arm over your head as you exhale, bending your body to the right.
Return to the initial position with your arms overhead as you inhale. Do the same exercise for the left-hand side. Make sure you bend only at the waist and use your obliques.
Repeat the exercise 10 times for each side. Do 3 sets.
You can also do dumbbell side bends if you want to strengthen your obliques even more.
3. Vertical leg lifts
This exercise will strengthen your lower abs.
Lie on your back with your legs straight and together. Keep your arms straight at your sides.
Lift both legs up while keeping them straight.
Slowly lower your legs so that they are a bit above the floor. Hold the pose for a couple of seconds.
Lift your legs up again. Inhale as you lower the legs and exhale on the way up. If lifting up straightened legs is too difficult for you, you can start by lifting your legs with your feet crossed.
Repeat the exercise 10 times. Do 3 sets.
The more slowly you do this exercise, the harder it gets. So if you want your lower abs to be really strong, try to do the lifts as slowly as you can.
4. Forearm plank
This exercise may look simple, but it is extremely effective for strengthening your core muscles — abs, diaphragm, and pelvic floor.
Get down on your forearms. Keep your shoulders directly over your elbows. Your arms should form a 90-degree angle.
Step back and lift your knees up. Maintain a straight line from your heels to the top of your head and look down.
Tighten your abs and hold the pose for as long as you can.
When you are able to hold the pose for 60 seconds, you can progress to more complicated planks.
5. Bridge exercise
This exercise is good for your abs and it also strengthens your glutes and thighs.
Lie on your back with your knees bent and your feet under your knees. Place your arms by your sides.
Tighten your abs and your glutes. Raise your hips up to create a straight line from your knees to your shoulders.
Curl your spine and go back down. Inhale as you go up and exhale on the way down.
Repeat the exercise 20 times. Do 3 sets.
6. Side plank
The side plank is a great exercise that will tone your core muscles, boost your metabolism, and improve your stamina.
Lie on your side with your elbow right under your shoulder and your upper foot on top of the lower foot.
Lift your hips to create a straight line from your feet to the top of your head. Do not let your hips drop.
Try to hold the pose for 60 seconds. Breathe calmly.
If you are a beginner, start by doing the side plank with your knees bent as shown here.
7. Cobra pose
This pose tones your abs, strengthens your arms and shoulders, and boosts your mood.
Lie down on your stomach and stretch out your legs.
Put your hands under your shoulders and move your elbows back.
Press your feet and your thighs against the floor.
Strengthen your arms and lift your chest up off the floor as you inhale. Press your tailbone toward the pubis.
Press your shoulder blades against your back.
Aim at holding the pose for 15-30 seconds. Breathe calmly.
Return to the initial position as you exhale.
8. Boat pose
Boat pose is the hardest exercise in our workout plan, so if you are a beginner, make sure that you start with simpler exercises.
Sit with your knees bent and your feet on the floor.
Lean back slightly and lift your feet so that your shins are parallel to the floor.
Stretch your arms out in front of you at shoulder height. Keep the pose with your knees bent for about 30 seconds. Engage your abs and lengthen your spine.
Put your feet back on the floor and relax for a few seconds.
Do the exercise again, but this time keep your legs as straight as you can so that your body forms a V-shape. Keep the abs engaged and your back straight.
Hold the pose as long as you can. If you feel that you are losing the V-shape, return to the pose with bent knees for a few seconds.
These exercises will not only help you reduce belly fat but will also improve your stamina — just don’t forget that these exercises should be done on a regular basis!