I had quite a revelation about abs yesterday. As some of you may know, they are my least favorite muscles to work on. Mostly because I hate interrupting an awesome weight training workout to lay on the floor and attempt to whittle this middle.
That’s not me, by the way, ha ha…
It should come as no surprise to me that since they are my least favorite muscles to work on that they are my biggest “trouble spot” if you will. I have some other issues going on in this area too, like extra skin as a result of a 70 lb weight loss.
But, I think I’m over being vain for the time being. I really just want a stronger and more stable core to help me run, have better posture and to prevent any future back problems. So it’s time to focus on these abs!
On Sunday, I did a really quick 15 minute ab program on Exercise TV. The best part of this was that the entire routine was STANDING. It included a lot of movements with the hips and legs, but I felt more during this workout than I have on the floor in a long time.
Then on Monday I took a yoga class and the instructor said something that really resonated with me. As we went through our asanas, he mentioned how crunches are not ideal for the core because it’s not based on the purpose of those muscles.
“Our cores are not meant to crunch us better,” he said. They are meant to stabilize us. So that is the most effective way to work them out.
One example he gave was the plank. Holding steady in that position requires a strong core (and thus develops a stronger one) because without it, the back would arch and your form would be incorrect and you could hurt yourself. We also did bridge pose a few times, which really made my back feel good.
And I got to do this!
Photo from Eternal Health Yoga Facebook page
I’ve never been able to do full wheel on my own before and having support from another person really made it seem so much easier! And I also got to be a support person and see what that felt like from the other side. It was a really neat experience.
Anyway, the point of this is that I am done doing exercises I don’t like that aren’t really going to help me anyway. And I hope this new revelation about abs (the entire core, really) will help me figure out a way to work them into my workouts more often!
Do you like doing ab work? What do you do?