Exercise! - Good Ab Exercises?

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Avalon Whitemare
06-10-2002, 09:53 PM
My abs need serious work. Does anyone have any suggestions for exercises that will really help them? I do crunches, but that doesn't seem enough. I've lost over 20 pounds since February, but my stomach looks like it did way back then. Its horrible.

Thanks in advance!

06-11-2002, 06:55 PM
Hi Avalon,

Crunches are a really good basic exercise for the abs. You can vary them to tone the muscles but it really doesn't matter how many you do if you still have a layer of fat either beneath them or above them. No number of crunches will flatten that stomach.

The good news is that, if you continue to do the crunches, when you diet and exercise off the last of the wobbly bits you should have nice abs waiting to be exposed!

Sorry! I know this probably isn't what you wanted to hear. All I can suggest is that you continue to do various abs work, including crunches. If you want a whole load of abs exercises I could run through all the ones I teach in my various classes - but I'd need to e-mail some of them as they have little diagrams in them!


06-23-2002, 03:22 AM
Hi Avalon,
Just cruising the posts, saw your note and thought I'd add my 2 cents. You might want to look into Pilates (puh-lah-tees). I tried it based on a recommendation from my sister who tries everything. I'm not a big fan of Denise Austin (sometimes she's just TOO perky for me), but I did start out with a tape of hers - Mat Workout Based on the Work of JH Pilates with Denise Austin that I picked up for 10 dollars at Wal-mart. It's a two parter, the first 20 minutes is Pilates, the second part is sort of a stinker where Denise incorporates Yoga into the routine - sorry Denise, you need to practice your Yoga a bit more before you go making a tape of that. After only 2 weeks of using the tape 3 times a week, I noticed a difference. Pilates focuses on strengthening the abs and lengthening and strengthening the muscles in the lower body. It also improves your posture and just standing up straighter pulls everything in and makes you look better.

I did progress to Pilates classes at the Health Club with a certified trainer. She said Pilates works the deeper muscles that give you a better ab workout than crunches do. From my own experience - tho everyone is different, I'd have to agree. Tho I still do crunches because I like to have some variety in my routine and I also use one of those exercise balls.

However, Stef is right - exercise will improve the strength and tone of your muscles but cardio and diet are what you need to focus for the fat burning.

Just thought I'd pass along another option to look into. Good luck!