You can’t sell tickets to the “gun show” without the six-pack to go with it. There is still time to get your abs ready for the summer and there is another good reason to get work on them—it boosts your overall workout performance.
One of the most neglected of all ab muscles is the transversus abdominis but one of the most important because it stabilizes your lower back which helps with posture and back pain. Its also the deepest muscle in your abs and will also help with those deadlifts.
The good news is that simply adding these exercises will help you work more than just your obliques and upper abs.
First move: Planks.
If you are not used to doing these or don’t normally incorporate those into your workout it’s important to do them properly first rather than how long you hold one. Proper form starts with drawing your belly button towards the direction of your spine. Next, you will want to keep your hips lifted while engaging your core and your quad muscles. A good rule of thumb to avoid any neck pain or strain is to hold your chin approximately six inches from the front of your body. Here is a handy video demonstration on how-to-do the perfect plank.
Second move: The “dead bug.”
This effective exercise is probably a staple in your girlfriend’s pilates class but it’s really just another type of a hollow hold exercise technique. You start by laying on your back with your knees bent at 90 degrees and your feet in the air. Raise your hands in the air, and keeping your back pressed to the floor (eliminating as much or all space between your lower back and the ground), extend your right leg in front of you and allow your left to move over your head making sure to alternate with the opposite hand and leg motion. Start with 15 reps and work your way up from there. Check out this video on proper dead bug form.
Last but not least remember to never incorporate a new diet or exercise plan without consulting your physician.