Having well-toned abs is usually at the top of every fitness enthusiasts’ list of fitness goals.
Regardless of whether your objective is to look amazing in a swimsuit or you simply want to get ripped and acquire some muscle mass, acquiring sculpted 6-pack abs is an objective shared by many.
- 1 But what makes abs so special?
- 2 The best cardio workouts for abs
- 3 Switch Kicks
- 4 Does cardio make your waist smaller?
- 5 Can you get abs in three months?
- 6 Is running good for abs?
But what makes abs so special?
Abdominal workouts offer potentially endless benefits other than just having beautiful looks. Abdominal muscles play an essential role in posture, balance, stability, and spine support. What’s more, having strong abs helps enhance performance in sports.
Most sports or strenuous activities require stability, core strength, and balance. And abdominal workouts usually target these muscle areas, providing you with the much-needed core strength needed for optimal sports performance.
Lower back pain is currently an issue that affects people from all walks of life. And weak abdominal muscles may aggravate your lower back pain.
Abdominal workouts usually target your back muscles as well as the spine, making them relatively more flexible hence reducing lower back pain.
Another great reason why you want to engage in cardio workouts for abs is having firmer waistline. By boosting muscle mass in your abdominal area, your body metabolism dramatically increases, and more calories are burnt.
This, in turn, results in a trimmer and leaner body. Simply put, you have every reason to engage in cardio workouts for abs!
However, it takes more than just a few cardio workout sessions to get the abs you are craving. And unless you are eating properly, working out adequately, and sticking to your workout regimen, your abs are never going to show up.
Getting more ab definition requires lots of hard work and dedication. However, you don’t have to visit your local gym 28-days/month or become a professional bodybuilder to acquire abdominal muscles.
The best cardio workouts for abs
Also referred to as aerobic exercise, cardio is any type of workout that boosts your heart rate. By regularly engaging in a cardio workout, you can burn extra fat and accelerate your way to a set of six-pack abs.
Research has shown that cardio workouts are especially effective when it comes to burning belly fat, and this helps strengthen your abdominal muscles hence make them more visible.
As experts in the industry, we are going to provide you with six highly effective yet simple and straightforward cardio exercises for abs.
By incorporating these unique exercises into your daily routine, you’ll be a step closer to realizing your dream of having well-toned abs ad sculptured physique you have always dreamed about.
Nearly everyone has done this type of exercise.
A high knee workout is a cardio-intensive exercise carried out at a fast pace. It not only strengthens all your leg muscles, engages your core, increases your heart rate, but equally improves momentum, flexibility and coordination.
Besides, high knees engage all your abdominal muscles and as a result, are a great way to build your abs.
Thanks to the many benefits they guarantee, high knees are often incorporated in a spectrum of workouts. What’s more, they are relatively easy to perform; no equipment or gym is needed!
So, how do you perform high knees?
Start by standing with your feet hip-distance apart. After this, lift your left knee as high as it can go while raising the opposite arm, then switch quickly and lift your right knee before your left foot lands to the ground.
Repeat this movement, alternating between your legs and increase your speed to a running or sprinting pace.
High knees are a killer type of cardiovascular exercise. They are not only easy to incorporate in your daily routine but guarantee unrivaled calorie-burning and toning results. Once you have mastered the art, try to maintain this exercise for at least half a minute.
Make an effort to complete at least five sets of these thirty-second repetitions at the beginning, with a few minutes rest periods in between, and increase the intensity as you progress.
You are craving for defined, sexy abs, but you might be having them already! They are just hidden under that fat layer in your tummy. Thankfully, you can expose these abs by losing those extra padding through rope-jumping.
Your objective should be to reduce the amount of fat hidden around your belly to bring your abs out. To achieve this, jumping rope might just be what you need.
Jumping rope is a workout tool that not only allows you to burn a hell lot of calories and trigger fat-burning mechanisms, but equally works your abs as well. As a cardio workout, jumping rope works your entire slew of muscle groups, particularly your core.
And in case you didn’t know, jumping rope will get you abs even faster than crunches. This is because it is a fantastic cardiovascular workout that uses your entire body.
It is estimated that if you jump rope for about 15 minutes, you can potentially burn between 200 and 300 calories.
What’s more encouraging is that you’ll be able to burn additional calories even after completing your rope jumping workout thanks to a phenomenon known as Excess Post-Exercise Oxygen Consumption. So, technically speaking, you’ll lose around 350-400 calories!
Best jumping rope techniques, follow the below tips:
- Criss-Cross: With this technique, you cross and uncross your jumping rope with every jump. In the beginning, it may be tough though it is perfectly fine. With practice, you’ll soon master the trick.
- Alternate landing: Normally when you do the jumping rope, you land on both feet at once. However, for this technique, land on your right foot and then your left foot with every rotation.
- Double jumps: Though this can be quite tricky, it can be highly effective. The idea is to skip the rope so fast that the rope passes under your feet two times before you land! You need to be fast.
- Two-by-two: With this one, you’ll jump twice on one foot before switching to the other foot. Continue alternating until you are satisfied.
- One-foot jumps: This is arguably the easiest and we are all familiar with it. I’m pretty sure you’ve done it since your childhood.
When performing jumping rope workout, do the above jump-roping segments for at least 30 seconds between rests. Rest just enough to change the techniques and repeat the whole circuit at least two times to fit a quick, thirty-minute exercise.
However, if any of these jump rope variations are too challenging, stick with the ones you are comfortable with and gradually incorporate the more difficult moves as you become conversant with your rope.
What do top professional athletes including soccer players have in common? The answer is simple; they all embrace the power and magic of burpees and regularly incorporate them into their workout routines.
But burpees are not just essential for certified athletes or hardcore bodybuilders. They are important for every fitness enthusiast. They are an awesome, strength-building, calorie-torching, full-body workout.
Burpees will effectively train your abs, obliques, triceps, chest, quads, glutes, hamstrings, calves as well as your cardiovascular system. Simply put, if you want a leaner, sculptured and sexier body with six-pack abs then burpees are the way to go.
What’s even more impressive about them is that you can do burpees nearly anywhere since they don’t require a gym or any workout equipment.
How to do a burpee the right way?
- Stand while positioning your feet shoulder-width apart, arms placed on your sides, and weight in the heels.
- Ensure your hips are pushed back and the knees are bent. After this, slowly lower your whole body into a squat.
- Put your hands on the floor directly in front of you but ensure they are inside your feet.
- Jump while pushing your feet backward, ensuring you land on the balls of your feet and in a plank position. Your body should create a straight line from your heels to the head. You want to ensure your back doesn’t sag, as this can potentially hinder you from effectively working your core. You should also avoid snaking your body from the ground by lifting your chest first and leaving your hips on the ground when lifting your body back up off the ground.
- Jump your feet up, ensuring they land just outside of your hands.
- Try to reach your arms overhead and jump up into the air explosively.
- You can also make your burpee training more challenging by incorporating push-ups into it. This means that after performing your normal burpee, go ahead and do a full push-up, especially after you kick out your knee to a push-up position.
Besides the basic burpee training, several burpee variations will help you kill your body and get ripped. As a rule of thumb, you need to perform them in quick successions for you to enjoy all the benefits this workout is popular for.
Every seasoned bodybuilder out there will tell you if you have time for only one workout, let it be mountain climbers. This straightforward is not only ideal for ab building but brings on board a whole host of benefits. Perhaps this is why it is a staple in strength training workouts as well as HIIT.
Mountain climbers are extremely efficient. They are a compound workout that involves several of your joints as well as muscles, ranging from the neck down to your feet.
To be more precise, mountain climbers target your triceps, quads, legs, hamstrings, hip flexors, deltoids, back, butt, and abs. What’s more, when carried out explosively, this type of exercise will dramatically shoot your heart rate up in a split of seconds.
As you can see, it’s like almost getting a total body workout with just one exercise.
How to do mountain climbers properly for enhanced benefits? Check out below.
With mountain climbers, you also need to be quick-footed and move to a particular rhythm, and this makes them an effective tool for enhancing both coordination and agility.
But you have to ensure your mountain-climbing technique is properly executed for you to enjoy all the aforementioned benefits.
- Get yourself in a high-plank position to ensure your weight is evenly distributed between your toes and hands. Ensure that your arms are straight and your whole body is in a straight line from your ankles to the head.
- Without interfering with your lower back posture, pull your right knee to your chest.
- As fast as you can, switch to your left knee and bring it to your chest as well while pushing your right leg back.
- Repeat this process, rapidly puling that knee out and bringing in the other one in quick succession.
- Keeping your hips streamlined downward, run your knees in and out as fast as you can. Alternate exhaling and inhaling as you interchange the legs.
If you are an ardent fan of kickboxing, then you probably know that a well-timed knee strike can easily KO your opponent. However, inside the gym, knee strikes can boost your conditioning, attack your abs and make them more visible, and strengthen your hip flexors as well.
They are easy to do and can be done anywhere without the involvement of any training equipment. You can perform them with just your body weight, or you may also decide to incorporate the use of a dumbbell, landmine, or medicine ball just to increase the intensity.
A good knee strike training works out your hip flexors, lateral abs, lower abs, glutes, calves, quads, and lower back. It only implies that if you just spend a couple of minutes perfecting this ab-training technique, you will possibly walk away with a perfectly good exercise.
There are many types of knee strike exercise out there, but in our case, we are going to concentrate on the power knee strike.
This is a kick-boxing-inspired workout that will not only give you the abs much faster but will also strengthen your waistline while putting your heart rate in the cardio zone.
Power knee-strike tips:
- Standing on your right leg, extend your left leg out to the side.
- The toe of your left leg should slightly touch the ground, whereas both the arms should reach over your head.
- Bracing your abs, appropriately bend your left knee upward and bring the same leg across your torso to your left shoulder. Both hands should be tapping at the top of your left thigh.
- As fast as you can, return to your starting position and repeat the whole process.
- Do at least thirty seconds on each side before switching to the other.
- For enhanced calorie burn and a faster heart rate, you can consider adding a hop as your arms and knee pull in toward each other.
A workout having the word kicks’ in its name probably gets you thinking the whole focus is on your butt and legs.
And while it is true that the switch kick workout will fire up nearly every muscle group ranging from your abdomen down to your knees, this amazing exercise will equally strengthen your core. Simply put, it is a total-body scorcher!
When rightly done, switch kicks will immediately work your core muscles, tone your lower body, shed belly fat, sculpt your abs, strengthen your legs, improve your posture, enhance your body flexibility, and improves endurance.
When you are engaging in switch kicks, your lower body gets targeted as well as the abdominals. And as you draw your kicking leg closer to your waistline, your abs are fired up to help flex your hip provide stability to your standing leg.
How should to do switch kicks effectively? Follow the below tips:
- Stand with on your legs about hip-width apart.
- Hold your fists at the shoulder height, while drawing your elbows to your rib cage.
- Shift your weight toward the right foot and lift your left knee at the height of your hip. Brace your core and kick the left leg forward as fast as you can.
- After this, draw your left foot back to the body while shifting your weight accordingly and hop onto your left foot.
- As you switch your legs, lift your right knee to the height of the hip and quickly stretch the leg, moving the right foot forwards and drawing it back to your body. Hop onto the right foot and kick the air with the left leg.
- Repeat the procedure, hopping and kicking as you alternate your feet while keeping your chest raised, your shoulders back and your core as tight as possible. For enhanced performance, increase the pace!
Does cardio make your waist smaller?
Having a teeny tiny waistline is a desire for everyone. If this is one of your fitness objectives, then it’s high time you incorporate cardio into your workout routine!
Cardio refers to any workout that increases your heart rate. Cardio will always involve movement and this makes your muscles stronger and efficient.
A stronger cardio-vascular system implies that increased levels of oxygen are being delivered to the cells in your muscles. This, in turn, allows your body to burn fat during both exercise and a state of inactivity.
Cardio is arguably one of the best ways to burn those stubborn calories. What’s more, cardio exercises involve strength training, which is an essential ingredient when it comes to reducing body fat and acquiring a toned belly.
However, you’ll have to keep in mind that your final results will also depend on your eating habits. For you to successfully trim your midsection, you’ll have to burn more calories than you consume! So, make sure you avoid all those late-night snacks.
Can you get abs in three months?
Yes, it is very much possible to get abs in three months! As we have previously mentioned, you will have to do the right workouts and do them correctly. What’s more, your diet, effort as well as your level of dedication will play a significant role.
All the six cardio workouts for abs we have described above can get your abs in a timeline of three months. Of course, you’ll also have to reduce your calorie intent and increase your protein intake, which is the building block of muscles.
Is running good for abs?
Bearing in mind that running is a good cardio workout, it will help you to lose belly fat which is key to acquiring abs. For sure, running can be a good place to start. However, running alone won’t actually do the job.
You will have to incorporate effective ab exercises and a healthy diet plan into your training regimen.