Best 16 minutes of your life or maybe you’ll hate every minute of it but your abs will say thank you! A tabata is a great high intensity interval training that can be done anywhere. You can use them to target a specific area of the body (such as the ab one I’m about to show you) or you can work the entire body. The workout is simple: 20 seconds of work and 10 seconds of rest. During the 20-second work period you should complete as many reps as possible with good form. You can do 4-8 sets of each exercise depending on your exercise & energy level. There are some great apps available that you can use that will keep track of your time and also allow you to use any of your workout playlists. Tabata and Seconds are two that I use frequently. And I love being able to add my own music to keep me pumped up during the workout. Otherwise you can always use a stopwatch to time the 20 second/10 second intervals.
Ab Tabata Workout
Oblique Standing Crunches: Stand straight up, feet hip distance apart. Bend your elbows & place your hands behind your head. As you begin to bend your knee and lift your leg, rotate your entire leg so that you can bring your knee to meet your right elbow. Use your oblique abdominal muscle to lift your leg to meet your elbow. Do the same on the left side.
Plank: Lay face down on the floor in a straight line. Push yourself off the floor and with your forearms flat on the floor forming the number ‘11’. Your shoulders should be right over your elbows. The rest of your body should be in a straight line. For better stability move your feet further apart. Beware not to raise your butt because then you lose the entire benefit of the exercise. You want to constrict the muscles in your abdominal section as well as your glutes (aka butt). This exercise works the entire abdominal section.
Bicycle Crunch: Lie back on the floor with your hands supporting the back of your head. Your legs should be bent in a 90-degree angle. Lift your head, neck and shoulders off the floor and rotate your abdominals to bring your right elbow to meet your left knee. As you rotate extend your right leg straight out. Then rotate your body (using your abs) to the other side so your left elbow meets your right knee. And your left leg extends straight out. Picture riding a bicycle while laying on your back. The twisting motion of your trunk should all be done using your abdominals.
Scissor Kick: Lay down on your back with your arms by your side. Raise your legs 6-12 inches off the floor making sure that your lower back does not arch. If it does begin to arch lower your legs slightly. Slowly cross your legs to form an ‘X’ and then repeat on the other side. You can make this more challenging by lifting your head, neck and shoulders off the floor and raising your arms so they are parallel to the floor. This is great for working the lower abdominals.
And now you have a 16 minute anywhere/anytime t AB ata!! Enjoy!!