I had just started blogging when I put it together, and actually took that blog down when I took a long hiatus. I totally forgot about it, really, up until someone copy and pasted it verbatim to their own blog. You'll see most of the time that the link on Pinterest takes you to some other girls website. In an effort to take back the rights to and reclaim my photos and my post, I've brought it back to this blog. If you would like to Pin this Challenge, please pin it from this page!
I was 21 and young when I put this together, so don't judge. At least I wasn't using a Shake Weight ... These were the days of Jillian Michaels and P90X and being too scared to step into a real gym or play with real weights. As you'll see, this is inspired by P90X Ab Ripper X, with a few variations. If you're new to fitness and nervous about working out in a fitness facility (we were all nervous as one point to enter the dreaded "weight area" of the gym), the comfort of your own living room and a good workout program like P90X can help you grow your confidence leaps and bounds, not only help create a daily workout "habit" that you need to make a real lifestyle change.
I eventually hope to update this Challenge and add a few new moves that I think are even more beneficial, but for now, we will just stick with the original movements. Enjoy!
*Remember, abs are made in the kitchen! You have to have a clean diet to get rid of that last layer of fat before you'll ever start seeing that 6-pack!
From the June 2009 article of Runner's World that inspired it all:
"These are the 3 rules that should never be broken by runners.
GO TO SLEEP. Athletes who get ten hours of zzz’s per night perform better than those who sleep less. “An extra hour or two of sleep a night a few weeks before a big event can make a big difference,” says Napa Valley Marathon winner Peter Gilmore.
EAT GOOD FOOD. Anthony Famglietti, an Olympian steeplechaser and former junk-foodie, took months to improve his diet. “I assumed you were supposed to feel bad after hard workouts,” he says. “Most of that came from a bad diet.”
BUILD YOUR CORE. To improve his running economy, Gilmore does core work five to six days a week. “When I do it, I feel normal.” he says. “When I don’t, my form gets sloppy, my back gets tight, and I feel a little wobbly and inefficient.”
In an effort to work on the last topic mentioned, this Challenge is here to help you strengthen your core.
Your core is the most important part of your body. Core exercises should be a part of any well-rounded fitness routine. Your bodies core is the area around your trunk and pelvis. When you have good core stability, you have better balance and a much lower risk of injury, since your lower back, hips, abdomen and pelvis are working in unison and harmony. They are different then your superficial abdominals – those “6-pack abs” don’t always mean strength and stability!
This is an abdominal and core routine. A lot of these movements are variations from movements we see in Yoga and Pilates. We want to become sexier, yes, but we need to become more stable, too, to help prevent future injuries. A strong core also helps runners maintain stronger form, therefore allowing them to runfaster, harder and longer.
These are some of, not all of the exercises from P90X Ab Ripper X and some of my own variations! I had great success with this quick routine.
I want to warn you - this is pretty tough! If you need to take a break, that’s okay! You’ll soon see how fast your body build and recovers, as these moves do get easier!
You can do this routine anytime, before or after your workout.
Do 25 repetitions of each move. Keep the pace comfortable but brisk, you want to feel the burn. It should take 15 minutes.
In and Outs. Just like it sounds. Sit on the floor with your hands at your sides. Raise feet off the ground and bring knees to your chest (above)
Straighten legs out (above), hold for a beat, and bring your knees back into your chest. This is one repetition. Repeat 25 times. Advanced: raise your hands above your head.
Bicycles. Sitting in the same position as the in and out, move legs in a wide, circular motion as if pedaling a bike. 1 revolution counts as one rep. Repeat 25 times.
Reverse Bicycles. Same as above, but instead of pedaling forward, petal backward. 1 revolution counts as one rep. Repeat 25 times. Advanced: raise arms overhead
Frogger. Same position and movement as In-N-Out, only your hands are OFF the floor and wrap around your knees (the movement becomes more advanced when you barely have to hold your knees) when your knees are at your chest (above) When you extend your legs back out, arms should be stretch out as sides, parallel to ground. (below)
This counts as one rep. Repeat 25 times.
Cross-Leg/Wide Leg Sit-Ups. Lie flat on your back with legs wide, in a V. (above) Advanced: bring legs closer together.
Place one hand behind your head and bring your torso up to perform a standard sit-up movement (see above.) Try to keep your legs on the floor.With one arm straight (above) try to go straight UP, instead of just over your legs. Sit up straight, and then cross your straight arm over to touch your opposite leg. (below)
And slowly lay back down. That’s one repetition. On the next repetition, switch arms and cross over to the other side. Repeat these 25 times, alternating sides. If you’re unable to keep your legs anchored, use dumbbells to help anchor your lower body.
Scissors. Life flat on your back, extending one leg towards the ceiling, and lifting the opposite leg off the floor just a few inches. Flex your feet, point that toe towards the wall behind you.
Alternate legs in a scissor motion, hold each switch for three seconds. Keep your skyward leg as straight as you can! Repeat these 25 times.
Hip Butt Ups. Lie on your back, open your hips and bend your legs so that the bottom of your feet are touching (below)
With your arms at your sides, rock your hips, lift your pelvis and drive your feet directly up towards the ceiling. When lowering back down, do not let your legs touch the ground. Repeat 25 times.
Heels to the Heavens. Lying on your back, extend legs straight up, with arms at your sides. Lift your butt off the floor (below) When raising feet, imagine touching the ceiling with the balls of your feet. Keep your feet very flexed. Be sure to lift the legs straight up at 90 degrees, and not towards your head. Focus on maintaining straight legs. Repeat 25 times.
Roll-Up V-Ups. Lie flat on your back with legs straight out, and arms extended overhead. (below)
Slowly, lower your torso towards the floor, simutaneously bringing your legs up off the ground at about 45 degrees.
Now, bring your torso back up and reach for your toes while your legs are in the air! Imagine creating a jackknife position with your body.
If you can touch your toes, you're a total badass. Repeat 25 times. Having fun yet?
Leg Climbers. Lie on your back with one leg bent, foot flat on the floor. The other leg should be out about 45 degrees (below)
You want to climb this extended leg, by first grabbing your thigh, then your knee, (see above) then your calf, then your toe. That’s the easy version. I do a two-touch. I just grab onto the inside of my knee, and then continue using my abs to pull me up. (below) You don’t want that extended leg to move around too much, keep it on the same plane the whole time. It will want to move as you crunch up. Fight it!
Repeat 25 times.
Kayakers. You’re almost done! Seated, clasp your hands together and raise your feet out, 4-6 inches off the floor. You may need to bend them to make this easier. Twist your upper torso from side to side, touching your knuckles on each side. Do these fast, like your kayaking a fast river. Do 50. If you can’t do 50, do 40. If you can’t do 40, do 30. You will be able to do 50 one day!
Ahhh! You just completed (if you did 50 kayakers) 300 abdominal exercises! You’re on your way to a strong and svelte core, baby.
Cool down and stretch
Cobra Stretch. Lie flat on your stomach and raise your upper body off the floor, supported by your arms. Your thighs should be resting on the floor.
Childs Pose. Sitting in your knees, fold you body over your legs and relax head and arms on the floor.