ned and shaped midsection without unfurling an exercise mat. The standing abdominals routine below hits all of the muscles that make up your core, from your abs to your hips, your pelvis to your lower back. Set your goal and ready to start with these 5 metabolic resistance exercises to torch fat around your middle and build muscles at the same time.
- DUMBBELL SIDE BEND
Are your love handles holding you back from a perfect midsection? Give the Dumbbell Side Bend a try to work your obliques.
START: Stand up straight while holding a dumbbell in the left hand (palms facing the torso) as you have the right hand holding your waist. Your feet should be placed at shoulder width.
FINISH: While keeping your back straight and your head up, bend only at the waist to the right as far as possible. Breathe in as you bend to the side. Then hold for a second and come back up to the starting position as you exhale. Keep the rest of the body stationary. Now repeat the movement but bending to the left instead. Hold for a second and come back to the starting position. Repeat for 3 sets of 10 reps.
NOTE: Refrain from using this exercise if your obliques tend to grow easily as wide obliques take away from your symmetry. You can also do this exercise while sitting on a bench or with a barbell.
- STANDING CORE STABILIZATION
This standing abdominal exercise is part of the Stand Up for Flat Abs Workout, created by Bernardo Coppola, a celebrity personal trainer in L.A., for Women’s Health. To get the best results, think about contracting your abdominals the entire time and pulling the navel closer to the spine. The dumbbell weight should be challenging, but not so heavy that you begin to feel the burn in your shoulders instead of your abs.
START: Stand with feet hip width, holding a dumbbell in both hands, and extend arms in front of the chest.
FINISH: Keep arms straight and shoulders pressed down, rotate upper body to the right and then return to centre. Keep your pelvis stable as you rotate your ribcage right and left, to complete one rep. Be sure to keep your abs pulled toward your spine as you twist from side to side. Do 10 reps to the right and 10 to the left. Then alternate sides for 10.
- LOW TO HIGH WOODCHOP
This dynamic exercise works the obliques and upper abs while keeping your heart rate up. Although this is a full-body move, it doesn’t require a lot of space so you can do it almost anywhere. Pick a 5-pound dumbbell at first, and then increase the weight to upgrade your level.
START: Squat and twist left to hold the dumbbell on the outside of your left leg.
FINISH: Exhale, and lift the weight diagonally across your body, ending twisted to the right with the dumbbell above your head. Pivot on your left foot as needed. The move is a bit percussive, so focus on the rotation initiating in your torso. Control the weight back up to the starting position to complete one rep. Remember you are moving with force but also control. Don’t give into the momentum of swinging the weight around. Do three sets of 15 reps on each side.
- DUMBBELL FORWARD HINGE TO LUNGE
Add lunges to your workout routine to improve the look, strength and feel of your legs, as well as to tone and shape your core. Dumbbell lunges can be used as one of the several lower-body exercises that improve full-body strength, stability and balance altogether.
START: Hold a dumbbell in your right hand, step forward with your right leg and lower the weight.
FINISH: Stand up, step out to the left and lower the weight to your left foot. This will build flexibility too. Switch legs after 30sec. Now shake them off and move on.
- ONE-LEGGED DUMBBELL ROWS
The one-arm, one-leg row is a good exercise to develop strength in the upper back, the posterior shoulder region and the arms, together with single-leg balance. In addition, it is an incredible exercise to challenge your balance and develop your core and back.
START: Standing tall with your feet shoulder-width apart and knees slightly bent, hold a dumbbell in one hand. Lean forward at your waist and lift the opposite leg until you form a T with your body. Hang the dumbbell in front of your body with a neutral grip.
FINISH: Contract your back and row the weight to the outside of your chest, and lower it back down. That’s one rep. Perform 2 – 3 sets of 8 – 12 reps on each side, resting 60 – 90 seconds between sets.
NOTE: Do not let your back leg fall, twist, or bend. Keep it high and straight. Keep your back flat and straight during the exercise to avoid injury.