Trying to strengthen your core or burn belly fat can be extremely challenging time to time. Finding the right type of exercises that really target and develop core muscles can be difficult.
Remember that it is going to take time. Don’t give up after a week or after a month. Keep going!
Here are things and thoughts I hope you find useful and helpful!
Where to start and how to develop
In order to gain sixpack or lose the fat around your belly the first step is to get your core strong. After you have more muscle in there you will start burning fat faster and getting more lean.
If you are just trying to get the core stronger, it is great news for you. The process will start right after a first time you perform core exercises.
Remember that core muscles can be trained anywhere. You are able to do them at home with your own body weight or with handy equipment. You can perform them in the gym, in your living room, anywhere.
It is also possible to train core more often than other muscle groups. Core muscles don’t need to rest as often as rest of body so you can train it 4-5 times a week. It is still important to give your core rest.
If you have trained your core 2 times a week without results, try to change the amount.
One thing to keep in mind is also what kind of exercises you’ll perform. Many of us think that doing planks is effective. However, it is estimated that if you are able to do a 3-minute plank it is no use for you to continue doing them.
Planks are also static and as themselves are not really effective exercise in the long run. In order to truly strengthen or grow our core we need movement.
So instead of just doing planks, do mountain climber planks instead for example. You will feel the difference and the burn.
We often ignore simple things. Often the obvious improvements will make a huge difference. In this case it means doing difficult enough exercises. Like with any other muscle group, core needs to be challenged.
If you are able to do regular sit-ups, let’s say, 40 times without exhaustion, you should start doing something challenging.
There are tons of different exercises out there that wait for you to challenge them. After a little piece of information about situps and crunches I will reveal you a few great exercises in order to get stronger.
Sit-ups vs. crunches
Many of us who train our core want to know which are better: sit-ups or crunches.
You can’t really lift another above the other. Both of them have their own benefits. It depends on which muscles you want to target at the moment.
Sit-ups target multiple muscles in your core. In addition to abs, they train your lower back, hip flexors, chest and even your neck. Sit-ups will help you burn more calories in the long run. They also help you to improve your posture by targeting the whole core of yours.
On the other hand, crunches are really effective in targeting abs. If you are interested in getting that sweet sixpack, crunches are a great way to achieve that.
These both type of exercises can cause injuries, especially for lower back. In addition, sit-ups might also injure your neck. Injuries are common for beginners but more advanced people can’t avoid them either.
Find out and test different types of sit-ups and crunches to find ones that seem to be best for you. In addition, sit-ups might also injure your neck so be sure to listen to your body.
If you are trying to lose belly fat, remember that just by doing sit-ups or crunches it isn’t possible. You have to take care of your nutrition and perform fat-burning exercises like cardio.
Best exercises to use
As I told earlier, doing regular sit-ups and crunches forever is not going to be really effective way in strengthening your core. There are different types of abdominal muscles that need targeting.
So in order to gain variety to your core workout plan I have assembled a few exercises you should start doing right away. They target inner and outer abdominal muscles as well as short and long ones.
Ab wheel roll outs: Builds your whole core. Really effective, needs a lot of body stabilization.
Burpees: Great exercise that targets your whole core and develops tenacity in the process.
V-ups: Needs a lot of stabilization. All-around improvement in abs.
Mountain climber: Good alternative for a regular plank.
Oblique crunch: Great exercise for stronger obliques.
Hanging leg raise: Targets your lower abs effectively.
Reverse crunch: Also great for your lower abs.
Scissor kicks, crucifix crunch, bicycle kicks…
Hopefully there are many useful exercises for you!
Compound exercises strengthen core
Another great way to activate and develop your core is by performing compound exercises as a part of your workout routine.
Compound exercises target many muscle groups and that often includes core muscles like abs or lower back. Squat, deadlift and many other exercises will target your core.
Remember to use your core while performing a movement. When you are focusing on squeezing thighs or some else muscles focus also on your core and abs. It will help you to lift more weight and add more strength to the movement.
Your core and your other muscle groups will thank you for that. You are not just developing your core in the process but also other muscles because you are able to lift more.
Many people forget to use their core in many exercises. Core has a big part in our body.
So remember your core fellas and start working towards your goal!