30-Day Ab Challenge

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Best Ab Exercises | How to Get a Six-Pack | Lower-Ab Exercises | Workouts for Women | Workouts for Men | Plank Exercises | Best Ab Machines | 30-Day Ab Challenge | Best Ab Rollers

Do you think you can't see real changes in the way your abs look in 30 days? Think again! We're challenging you to take on the ACTIVE.com 30-Day Ab Challenge. If you're following a sound nutrition plan, doing cardio, and giving your all to the workouts, this 30-day ab challenge will become a 30-day success story. Whether you want to improve your abs for a vacation, fitness event, or simply in pursuit of personal excellence, ACTIVE.com has you covered!

What to Expect

Over the course of the 30-Day Ab Challenge, you can expect a different theme to each day's ab workout. And yes, you will train abs every day for the next month. The themes to expect with each workout will vary and will include anything from high rep sets to full circuits. No workout should take longer than 15 minutes, and some can be as little as 4 minutes. You can do the workouts in the 30-Day Ab Challenge when you wake up, during your regular workout, at the end of the day, or even if you have a few spare minutes after work—the main point is to do all 30 sessions.

Day 1: Basics Are Best


We're going to start with something simple—a three-movement ab circuit. You will do lying leg raises, full-body crunches, and planks back to back. Perform the triset below for three rounds, and you should be done within 6-8 minutes.

Triset: Perform 3 rounds of the following exercises:

  • Lying leg raise: 3 sets of 15 reps
  • Full-body crunch: 3 sets of 15 reps
  • Plank: 3 sets of 30-60 seconds

Day 2: Mountain Climber Tabata

Mountain climbers are great for the lower abs and for burning calories, so you get two for the price of one here. Tabata is a style of training that alternates bouts of all-out effort with brief moments of rest for a total of 4 minutes. Start a clock or timer and perform 20 seconds of mountain climbers followed by 10 seconds of rest, then repeat for eight rounds. You'll be done in 4 minutes.

Repeat for 8 rounds:

  • Mountain climber: 20 seconds
  • Rest: 10 seconds

Day 3: 100-Rep Set

Today, you get to choose one of the following three exercises. Your mission is to perform 100 reps in the shortest amount of time possible while still focusing on quality contractions. Don't fly through them and sacrifice form, or you could end up with the wrong kind of training pain.

  • Rope crunch
  • V-up
  • Lying windshield wiper

Day 4: Obliques, Obliques, Obliques

You can't neglect your sides! Let's show them some love by doing 3 sets of 10 reps of the following exercises:

  • Woodchopper: 3 sets of 10 reps, 5 reps per side
  • Twisting crunch: 3 sets of 10 reps, 5 reps per side
  • Side bend: 3 sets of 10 reps, 5 reps per side

Note: Rest 30 seconds between sets.

Day 5: Shoulder Tap Planks

Shoulder tap plank

It's only one exercise, but after the first two days, you will definitely feel the effects of this. Assume the high plank position and start doing shoulder taps. Go for 30 seconds, then rest for 30 seconds. Repeat for anywhere from 5-10 rounds. Remember how many rounds you do because that information will come in handy later on.

Day 6: Lower Ab Love

The theme for this day is to focus on the lower portion of the core. Do these two exercises back to back for a nice superset that will total 100 reps after 5 supersets.

Superset: Perform the exercises back to back for 5 rounds.

  • Hanging leg raise: 10 reps
  • Cross-body mountain climber: 10 reps per side

Day 7: Ab Roller Derby

This one is going to require an ab roller, but you're not going to focus on high reps here. Do as many quality reps as you can in one minute. Rest for one minute, then repeat until you've done 3 rounds. Get as quality of a stretch as you safely can.

Repeat for 3 rounds:

  • Ab wheel rollout: 1 minute
  • Rest: 1 minute

READ NEXT: Perfect Fitness Ab Carver Pro Review

Day 8: Plank Circuit

As part of this ab series, we shared some of the best versions of the plank that you could be doing. Go back to that story and try all of them for at least 30 seconds each. If you can't do one or two of them, don't beat yourself up about it, just do the best you can with what you are able to do.

Day 9: Play Ball

Medicine ball slams and twists are both great ways to train abs and relieve some stress. Find a medicine ball weight that you can easily dominate and get to work.

Repeat for 5 rounds:

  • Medicine ball slam: 1 minute
  • Standing twist with medicine ball: 1 minute

Day 10: Shoulder Tap Planks 2

Remember the workout from Day 5? You're going to repeat that one every five days to see if you can improve. If you only did 5 rounds the first time, try for 6 this time. If you improve by one round every five days, then by Day 30 you may be able to do 10 rounds.

Day 11: V is for V-Up


This workout is simple, but it may not be so easy. Perform 5 sets of 20 reps of V-ups with 30-45 seconds of rest in between each set.

  • V-up: 5 sets of 20 reps

Note: Rest 30-45 seconds between sets.

Day 12: Crunch Time

Set up an exercise mat or lie on the floor wherever you're comfortable. Perform 50 reps of the twisting crunch (per side) and 50 reps of the reverse crunch, aiming for the fastest time possible. Note your time once you finish. The time cap is 15 minutes; if you don't finish before time is up, record the number of crunches you did.

  • Twisting crunch: 50 total reps
  • Reverse crunch: 50 total reps

Day 13: Four-Move Ab Workout

Perform 1 set of 25 reps of each of the following workouts:

  • Heel tap: 25 reps per side
  • Lying windshield wiper: 25 reps, each direction
  • Lying toe-touch: 25 reps
  • Mountain climber: 25 reps per leg

Day 14: Try Something New


This series includes "Ab Workouts for Women" and "Ab Workouts for Men." Pick any two exercises from one of those and perform them for 2 sets until failure. Choose exercises you're not familiar with, if possible, so you can challenge yourself to improve.

Day 15: Shoulder Tap Planks 3

It's that time once again. Get back into the plank position and see how many rounds you make it this time. If you get to the point that you can do all 10 rounds, stop there and call it a day.

Day 16: Scissors and Jacks

This two-move workout should only take a few minutes out of your day. Perform the scissor kicks for 30 seconds, then flip over and do 30 seconds of plank jacks. Repeat for 3-5 rounds, depending on your level of experience.

Circuit: 3-5 rounds

  • Scissor kick: 30 seconds
  • Plank jack: 30 seconds

Day 17: Chopping Wood

The woodchopper is another great move that doubles as an ab exercise and calorie burner. Perform 100 total reps on each side for a quick and intense session. Rest when you need to, but try to get it done within 15 minutes.

  • Woodchopper: 100 total reps per side. Rest as needed.

Day 18: Sprint and Plank

Go to a track or area where you can run for a long distance. Sprint from one end to the other. As soon as you finish, get down into a plank position for 30 seconds. Repeat for 4-6 rounds.

Day 19: Slam Time

Medicine ball slam

This day is all about the med ball slam. Find the heaviest medicine ball that you can control and try to get 50 solid slams as quickly as possible. Rest when you need a brief break, but the time limit is 10 minutes.

Day 20: Shoulder Tap Planks 4

Either try to improve by one round, or perform 10 rounds as you have on Days 5, 10, and 15. If you need a little more challenging version, try to do them with a small weight plate on your back. A 45 wouldn't be recommended to start with, but a 10 or 25 could serve you well.

Day 21: More Lower Ab Love

On Day 6, you did the hanging leg raise and cross-body mountain climbers for 100 total reps. This time, you're going to do them for 150 total reps. Perform the following superset five times with minimal rest between sets.

Superset: 5 sets

  • Hanging leg raise: 15 reps
  • Cross-body mountain climber: 15 reps per side

Day 22: Be Your Own Superhero

This day is all about the Pike to Superman. Perform 3 sets for as many reps as you can with one minute of rest between sets. If you've never done this move before, then simply try to get the form down and stop when you're unable to perform the exercise anymore.

  • Pike to Superman: 3 sets to failure

Day 23: Crawls and Tucks

Knee tucks are a safe way to train the lower abs, while the bear crawl can help with overall athletic ability. Perform 15 reps of the knee tucks, then do the bear crawl for 30 seconds.

Repeat for 3 rounds:

  • Knee tuck: 3 sets of 15 reps
  • Bear crawl: 3 sets of 30 seconds

Day 24: Crunch Time Again

Reverse crunch

You're going to do the same workout as you did on Day 12. Either push yourself to get a better time, or if you didn't finish, give all you've got to get the job done this time.

  • Twisting crunch: 50 total reps
  • Reverse crunch: 50 total reps

Day 25: Shoulder Tap Planks 5

That fifth day has come around again and you know what to do by now. If you haven't gotten all 10 rounds yet, then you should be getting close. If you have, then either do 10 again or try it with weight on your back.

Day 26: Hang Out with Leg Raises

The hanging leg raise is a top-notch lower abs exercise, and if you haven't tried it before, today is your day. Perform 3 sets of 15 reps with 30 seconds of rest in between. If you can do these with no problem, then add a dumbbell into the mix by holding one between your feet. Ankle weights can be an option, as well.

  • Hanging leg raise: 3 sets of 15 reps

Note: Rest 30 seconds between sets.

Day 27: Weighted Crunch and Standing Twist

You're going to need a medicine ball or weight for this. Perform as many crunches as you can in 60 seconds. Then, stand up with the weight and perform standing twists for 60 more seconds. Rest one minute between sets, and repeat for 4 sets.

Day 28: Day 1, Round 2

You should see how far you've come over the last four weeks. So, go back to the Day 1 workout and perform it again exactly the same. You should find that it wasn't nearly as challenging this time as it was the first go-round.

Triset: 3 rounds

  • Lying leg raise: 3 sets of 15 reps
  • Full-body crunch: 3 sets of 15 reps
  • Plank: 3 sets of 30-60 seconds

Day 29: Play Dead

Dead bug

The dead bug is a unique exercise, but it's also effective. Perform 3-5 sets of 10 reps on each side with 30 seconds of rest in between. If you want to step up the intensity, do mountain climbers for 30 seconds after you finish the dead bugs.

Perform 3-5 sets:

  • Dead bug: 10 reps per side
  • Mountain climber: 30 seconds (optional)

Day 30: Shoulder Tap Planks 6

The final workout in this challenge is also the final shoulder tap planks challenge. Do whatever you have to do to complete 10 rounds. If you need to rest longer, go for it. Once you finish 10 rounds, you're done for the day and you've also successfully completed the ACTIVE.com 30 Day Ab Challenge!

Final Takeaway

After all 30 of these workouts, you should notice that your abs are stronger and more defined, and you should feel an overall improved feeling of wellness. Once you finish the ACTIVE.com 30-Day Ab Challenge, pass it on to your friends and family to see if they will accept the callout for better abs.

Best Ab Exercises | How to Get a Six-Pack | Lower-Ab Exercises | Workouts for Women | Workouts for Men | Plank Exercises | Best Ab Machines | 30-Day Ab Challenge | Best Ab Rollers