17. September 2013 19:49
Achieving a ‘strong core’ and getting ‘flat abs’ are really two different things. The abdominals may get a lot of attention when it comes to your mid-section but to build a truly strong core that will support your back, improve posture and increase athletic performance, it’s important to look at exercises that strengthen your entire mid-section, front and back, from your shoulders to your hips.
When it comes to making your stomach look good, unless you’ve got great genes then it’s almost all down to diet and lifestyle. All the crunches in the world won’t reveal that six-pack if your nutrition isn’t up to scratch, your digestion is out of sorts and you’re life’s one big stressful ride. The good news? A few simple tricks can sort you out!
Build a strong core…
Your abdominals, mid to lower back and hips all work together to make up your ‘core’, so to create a really strong foundation it’s important to do core work that engages the entire area as one unit, the front and back of your trunk/torso contracting together. Multi-joint movements that require you to stabilise your spine as they’re performed are also really helpful.
The good news is, you don’t need a gym to make a serious impact on your core strength. Incorporate these bodyweight basics into your daily routine to start seeing results: plank, side plank, prone rows (supergirls), hip raises and elevated hip raises, woodchops, plank rows, oblique twists, squats, pushups, lunges and lunge-twists, chin-ups/pullups and pretty much any exercise performed on an exercise ball.
Get flat abs…
OK, here’s the part y’all are really reading this for – how to get flat abs! Well, there are usually a few key hormones you can hold accountable when your tummy just won’t shift – Insulin and Cortisol particularly.
Keep Insulin happy by eating a diet low in simple carbohydrates, sugars and processed foods but high in fibre, protein and good fats. Ditching your morning cereal/bread routine and eating a breakfast made up of protein and good fats can help turn insulin issues around quick-fast! Then eat plenty of fibrous veggies throughout the day and consider adding a natural fibre supplement and some good quality fish oils to your diet to ramp up your results.
Next, reduce those cortisol levels by getting good quality sleep, plenty of exercise, some fun social time and importantly, a little “you” time in whichever form works for you; meditation, a good book, a long walk, a swim in the ocean, or simply a cup of tea in the garden. It’s the little things you make time for that will help combat stress build up.
Flat tummy foods include berries, green leafy veggies, good fats like avocado, oily fish and good quality oils like coconut and olive (good fats are a HUGE help on the path to a flat tum), sufficient water, a little full fat and organic yoghurt and… wait for it… dark chocolate! Look for brands with less than 10g sugar per 100g. In terms of your training, the best kind you can do to zap tummy fat is functional resistance/weight training and also interval cardio, performed with intensity.
19. March 2013 18:07
This morning I found myself in desperate need of two things: hitting some pretty hairy media deadlines, as well as needing a good workout! With no time to even get to my own gym or bootcamp for a session, a home workout was my only option – no travel time or equipment required! [More]
30. January 2013 05:00
This is a question women ask me all the time and I don’t blame them for wanting to know the answer! Breasts are made up of fatty tissue and whether your ‘girls’ are large or small really depends on your hormonal makeup and how much fat you tend to store in that particular spot. Genetics play a role, as does your current weight, hormones and age. [More]
21. December 2012 06:08
Merry Fitness BUFsters!!! It's been a hugely successful year for us and we are so incredibly grateful for all your support to make it happen! We hope Santa brings you everything you wanted this year, whether that be a well deserved holiday away or just a chance to exhale... ahhhhh. As a little Christmas prez we thought we'd put together a workout you can take with you... wherever you are... [More]
16. August 2012 11:17
We all have those days when we just can’t be bothered to get up for training, right? The house is just too warm… and that lycra just looks a bit too hard to slip on… Well, the good news is that just 10 minutes of bodyweight work in your bedroom is enough to get your metabolism fired up for the day and your body burning through fat with minimal effort, before you even set foot in the shower! [More]