If you want to quickly lose inches on your waist, you must work those core muscles hard. Diet is important too, but the sculpting work comes from exercise. Try these on for size.
These exercises are sure to firm you up and slim you down in no time, and you can do them everyday for as little as 10 minutes.
The Abdominal Plank
This exercise targets all aspects of your abdominal muscles. To get into position, lie on your stomach resting on your forearms, hands pointed outward in front of you and lift up on the balls of your feet. Now, using your abdominal muscles, lift your hips off the floor until they are parallel to your shoulders and hold position for a few seconds before lowering yourself back to the ground.
Make sure your entire body is in a straight line with your shoulders and that your face is facing down toward the floor, also in a straight line. For an added challenge, while your hips are lifted, alternate raising each leg off the floor behind you in a straight line, again parallel with your shoulders.
Side Plank Hold
This variation on the abdominal plank targets the oblique (side) muscles of the abs. To get in position, lie on your side with your knees slightly bent and your thighs, knees and feet stacked on top of one another. Rest on your elbow with your hand pressed firmly to the floor, fingers spread out for support and lifting up out of your elbow so that your obliques are lifted from the floor.
To begin, lift your hips off the floor, being sure to keep your elbow and hand firmly on the floor. Hold in this position for about 10 seconds or as long as you can before lowering yourself slowly to the ground. Repeat for 10 to 12 repetitions. Do the same on your other side.
The bicycle is often touted as the best exercise for toning and strengthening your core muscles. To get into position, lie on your back with your hands behind your head, knees bent and feet flat on the floor.
Now, bring your knees toward your chest until they are in a right angle with your feet pointing out in front of you. In a bicycle motion, alternate touching your right elbow to your left knee and your left elbow to your right knee for about 15-20 repetitions. Lower your legs, rest for 60 seconds and repeat for 2-3 sets.
This exercise is kind of advanced and targets your entire waist area. To get into position, lie down on your back with knees bent and feet on the floor, and then raise up until you can touch the floor with your hands behind you in a straight line. Now, grasp both of your elbows with either hand and begin to twist from side to side like a washing machine. A full turn from right to left equals one repetition. Continue for 12-15 reps and 2-3 sets.
This exercise targets the obliques primarily, but also works your middle abdominal muscles. Lying on your back in sit-up or crunch formation, lift your shoulder blades slightly off the floor and hold while you alternately touch the side of your right heel with your right hand and the side of your left heel with your left hand. Touching each side counts as one rep; continue for 12-15 repetitions and 2-3 sets.