We hate to be the bearers of bad news, but it’s nearly impossible to get a flat tummy from crunches alone.
Achieving that tight and toned tummy, no matter what your natural shape, requires a nuanced combination of regular strength training, consistent cardio and great nutrition.
However, if you are looking for a faster route, there are some straightforward exercises that, when added to your regular routine, will accelerate your progress.
1. Oblique Mountain Climbers
These bad boys target all your core muscles in one go, with an added cardio benefit (raised heart rate, fat burning). The trick is to try them on your toes, and to maintain a straight plank position (rather than arching your back).
2. Side Plank with Leg Raise
Think side plank on steroids! Simply lift your top leg up, keeping your body straight at the same time. You can come down to your knees if toes are too advanced.
3. Sprint Intervals
Yep, that’s right! It’s important to incorporate some hard cardio into your tummy routine, and nothing beats sprinting intervals for pure fat-burn. Find a long stretch where you can do 30 second sprints back-and-forth for 12 reps.
4. Russian Twists
Ideally, do these twists with a 5 to 8kg weight in your hands. This targets your obliques, which helps create those muscle contours.
5. Scissor Legs
These won’t feel as strenuous as the other exercises, but believe us when we say they’re absolutely killer at sculpting your abs. This is because they work your lower abs, an oft-forgotten area that’s crucial to strengthen and shape.