8 Killer Ab Exercises

Get ready to whip off your cover-up: This workout, created exclusively for Women's Health by Rachel Cosgrove, C.S.C.S., owner of Results Fitness in Newhall, California, combines fat-burning cardio with moves that target your entire core rather than individual muscles, so you'll burn more fat while toning up.

Directions

Do these workout moves three nonconsecutive days a week. Start with the Basic Workout (moves 1-4) to prime your muscles. After three weeks, you'll be ready to graduate to the Advanced Workout (moves 5-8). For maximum fat burning, perform the exercises as a circuit: Do one set of each move in the order shown, resting for 30 seconds between exercises. Then rest for a minute and repeat the circuit from the beginning.

Melt Your Middle

Follow this interval-training program three times a week after your core workout. It'll fire up your metabolism and burn off the fat that's hiding your abs. Intervals are short bursts of maximum-intensity effort—you're doing it right if you can't carry on a conversation—separated by periods of easy-pace recovery. In an Australian study, women who cranked out high-intensity interval training three days a week for 15 weeks dropped significantly more weight than those who exercised for the same period of time at a lower intensity.

For this interval workout, remember to include an easy 3- to 5-minute warmup and cooldown. You can run, bike, or use the cardio machine of your choice.



Burn More Fat!

Supercharge your workout wit these Web-exclusive tipsonly from womenshealthmag.com.

Here is the workout:

Basic Move: Plank




Starting at the top of a pushup position, bend your elbows and lower yourself down until you can shift your weight from your hands to your forearms. Your body should form a straight line. Brace your abs (imagine someone is about to punch you in the gut) and hold for 60 seconds. If you can't make it to 60 seconds, hold for 5 to 10 seconds and rest for 5 seconds, continuing for 1 minute. Focus on form: Don't drop your hips or raise your butt.

Discuss This Article

Follow your passions

Connect with ACTIVE.COM