Be Well Workout of the Week: Shred Your Abs in 15 Moves

If your abs are shaking, you're doing it right.

Three’s the number for this workout.  Complete three rounds of each set of three exercises, then move on to the next. You’ve got five sets of exercises to get through total. (Note: The number of reps decreases as you get through the workout, so adjust your weights accordingly.) And if you feel your abs shaking, that’s the idea: Your abs — along with your arms and legs, too — should really feel the burn during this workout. Happy sweating, folks!

Be Well Workout of the Week: Shred Your Abs in 15 Moves

Instructions: Go through each round three times, then move on to the next.
Round #1 x 3
25 mountain climbers (on each side)
25 crunches
25 squat jumps

Round #2 x 3
20 push-ups
20 lunge jumps
20 bicycle crunches (on each side)

Round #3 x 3
15 dead lifts
15 lateral hops (on each side)
15 alternating overhead press (on each side)

Round #4 x 3
10 single-leg burpees
10 plank rows (on each side)
10 pullover sit-ups

Round #5 x 3
5 plank knee drives (on each side)
5 v-ups
5 ab twists with leg extension

Explanation of exercises: 
Click links for how-to videos.

Mountain climbers: Get in plank position. Alternating legs, bring your knee into the chest, keeping your upper body strong. Extend leg and switch.

Crunches: Get in sit-up position, with knees bent and hands behind the head. Without pulling the neck, squeeze your abs and sit halfway up. Hold for a beat, and return to starting position.

Squat jumps: Stand with feet hip-width apart and perform a squat, dropping your rear until your knees are just behind your toes and your hamstrings are parallel to the floor. As you stand, propel yourself upwards and jump. Return to standing and squat again.

Push-up: Start lying face down with your chest on the floor, with hands facing forward and palms down in line with your shoulders; elbows should be pointing back. Push up until arms are extended (the inside of the elbow should be facing forward) and drop back down.

Lunge jumps: Start standing with feet together and step forward with the left leg into a lunge, bending knee to about 90 degrees. Jump as you stand back up and switch legs before you land, so your right leg is forward. Lunge again, then jump, putting your left leg forward, and so forth. Left and right counts as one.

Bicycle crunch: Lie on your back in sit-up position: feet on floor, knees bent, hands behind the head to support the neck. Lift your feet off the floor, extend your left leg to straighten, and twist your torso as you touch your left elbow to right knee. Draw the left leg in as you push the right leg out, and twist the other direction, touching your right elbow to left knee. Repeat by alternating sides in a fluid motion.

Dead lift: Stand with legs shoulder-width apart and dumbbells in hands. Bend knees slightly and lean forward with your arms moving towards the ground, until your back is at a table-top position. Slowly return to the starting position.

Lateral Hops: Standing with your feet together, jump to the left, tapping the floor, then jump to the right, repeat.

Alternating overhead press: Holding free weights in each hand, stand with the weights at your shoulders (elbows forming 90 degrees beside your head), hips tucked under, and abs very strong. Pressing your left hand to the ceiling, straightening your arm, and return to the starting position. Repeat the motion on the right.

Single-leg burpee: Do a burpee, balancing on one leg throughout. Complete all reps on one leg, then alternate to the other leg.

Plank row: In a push-up position with your hands on free weights, row one weight up and back, keeping your hips square to the floor and squeezing your shoulder blade. Lower and repeat on the other side.

Pullover sit-ups: Lie on the physioball on your back so your head and neck are supported. Holding a single weight in both hands, reach the weight over your head, keeping your arms slightly bent.  Drive the weight back up towards the ceiling, pulling up into a sit-up. Be sure to squeeze your glutes the entire time. Return to starting position and repeat.

Plank knee drive: In a plank position, drive right knee to your right elbow. Return to plank position, repeat on the left side.

V-ups: Lie flat on your back with legs outstretched and arms above your head. Sit up, lifting arms and legs and reaching your hands and feet toward the ceiling. Shoulder blades should come off the mat as you reach for your toes. Hold for a beat, then return to the starting position.

Ab twists with leg extension: Do an ab twist to each side with feet lifted, then extend legs, keeping feet off the ground, and lean back. Drive knees and chest back together, and repeat.

» Did you complete this week’s BeWOW? Tell us how you did in the comments! Or,  feel free to tweet at us about it using the hashtag #BeWOW. Check out all the BeWOW workouts here.


Audrey McKenna Hasse is the owner of A.M.Fit, a personal training and healthy consultation business on the Main Line. You’ll find her workouts every Monday right here on Be Well Philly.

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