We all know that we're supposed to get 30 minutes of exercise per day but what happens if you could get all the exercise you need in only 10 minutes of high intensity training? You'd want to do the latter right?
That’s why we spoke to Herbalife Fitness Ambassador and exercise expert Sam Clayton to get her 10 minute workout to perfect those abs in a third of the time. It just makes so much more sense.
10 minute exercise for abs:
Before we get started Sam says that in order to get those A-list abs you need to understand a little bit more about your core:
“First lets define the term abs; many people think of the abs as the six pack muscles you can see in the mirror but I want to share that the true secret of getting that perfectly toned mid section is to understand that your ‘Core muscles’ includes the hips, oblique’s (sides) erector spine (lower back) rectus abdominals (front) and transverse abdominals (deep inside).”
This 10 minute exercise will do more for your core that 200 sit ups ever could. The trick is to engage your entire core rather than just your abdominal muscles.
Sam says: “Whenever you challenge your balance your core complex has to engage to keep you stable so mixing up your workout to include standing moves will give your body a great challenge.”
She should know, she’s had triplets and used this exact routine to get her body toned to perfection afterwards.
“In just 10 quick minutes you can work toward getting that perfectly toned and balanced mid section.”
How to do it: One minute of jumping jacks followed by 4 simple exercises; take 40 seconds to do each exercise with 10 seconds rest. Repeat the circuit 2 times for a great 10- minute core challenge. Ready?
1: A simple plank hold:
You will need a mat and access to a timer or clock for all of these exercises. So when you’re ready, lets go!
Sam says: “Rest your body on your forearms with your palms flat on the floor. Ensure that your shoulders are aligned directly over your elbows with your legs straight behind you.”
“In a push-up motion, raise your body off the floor, supporting your weight on your forearms and your toes. You should have a straight line from top to toe.
“Make sure that your back is flat and your head, neck and spine are in a straight line.
“You can also perform this move in a traditional push up position on your hands. Keep your core tight and remember to breathe as you hold for 40 seconds.”
2. High knee drill
If you’ve ever done a Davina McCall workout you’ll know all about the benefits of ‘high knees’, if not, be prepared to put some energy in.
“High knee drills improve the strength of the hip flexors and can vary from a walking step drill to a fast high knee lift pick up." Sam says.
“Simply stand up tall with feet shoulder width apart and in a running motion pick the knees up one at a time toward the chest while driving the arm as if you are running. Continue at a comfortable speed for 40 full seconds.”
3. Perfect crunch
You’re really going to be working your core hard with this exercise, so be ready.
Sam says: “Have your knees bent, and the balls of your feet and heels placed flat on the ground. Place your hands on opposing shoulders, so that your arms are crossed over your chest, or placed gently behind your head.”
“Tighten your abdominal muscles gently by drawing in your belly button to your spine. Keeping your heels and your toes flat on the ground, curl your back to lift your shoulders towards the ceiling (not towards your knees) using strictly your abdominal muscles.”
“Pull up from the floor until you're shoulder blades are off the floor and then lower. Keep your chest open and keep space between your chin and collar bone. Focus on a slow steady rhythm, pausing at the top then lowering slowly, pause and then repeat.”
Although this is a simple exercise you can hurt yourself if you don’t do it right, so make sure you don’t lift your entire back off the floor as it can lead to back strain.
“Instead try to focus on gently contracting the abdominal muscles for the entire movement."
4. Side plank
Sam says: “Start out, lie on your right side, in a straight line from head to your feet. Rest up on your forearm ensuring your elbow is directly underneath your shoulder, this angle is very important to ensure that you don't put unnecessary stress on your shoulder and neck.
“Gently contract your abdominal muscles then lift your hips off the floor, maintaining the nice straight body alignment.
“Keep your hips square and your neck in line with your spine. Hold for 40 seconds and lower down. Try not to let your hips drop down during the move.”
Breathe, relax and you’re done! Not that awful was it? Now time to do it all again... Got some great abs to show off? Tweet us an ab-selfie at @sofeminineuk