3 Moves to Rock Your Core

Alright let’s be honest here, who does not need to give her core a little extra TLC?

“I’m dying for stronger abs” is probably what I hear most from fellow moms when we talk about toning and strengthening our bodies.

And with good reason! Our core goes through a lot!  Yep pregnancy is amazing and the way our body stretches fascinating albeit a little weird, but the result is more or less the same for all of us — we seem to loose our abs!  I’ll never forget how devastated I was after my first daughter was born when I realized my abs were not working the way I wanted them to. I expected  I could get right back into exercise and quickly get rid of my pregnancy tummy, but it didn’t quite happen as smoothly as I had hoped.

Thankfully I was pretty fit before becoming pregnant and I took good care of myself and growing babe during those nine amazing months so I was able to build back my core strength with consistent work.

Three babies later and less than a year away from my fiftieth birthday, I am proud to say that I have a super strong core and, yes, I am proud of it! But here’s the thing, I don’t have a flat tummy. Nope those three beauties left me with a nice little swelling I can gently pat 🙂  And that is perfectly okay.

I used to stress about getting that flat stomach back but truth be told, I think a little softness is quite beautiful and feminine.

I do nonetheless work my core diligently.

I need to!

Yes I’m approaching the half century mark and I’ve learned how important for my health and overall well being it is to have a strong core. A core that supports me in everything I do and protects my back.  A core that helps me stand a little taller and confident.  A core I can count on whether I’m defying gravity on silks or trapeze, juggling too many grocery bags or going on a shopping marathon with my daughters.  A core that helps me stay balanced and make it through each day with a semblance of grace.

Alright you get the picture.

Our core is centrally located in our bodies and as such it is involved in everything we do.

So are you ready to give your core a little lovin’?

Here are three of my favorite moves for a strong and beautiful core:

The plank

Yes the plank! One of my all time favorites as you know.  I love the plank for so many reason but mostly because it works all of your core muscles , along with your shoulders, arms, glutes, hamstrings and quads. I am a firm believer in focusing on exercises that work more than one muscle group at a time and the plank excels at this.  Another reason I am such a huge fan of the plank is because you can come up when endless variations to increase the challenge and fire up different muscle groups.  So you never get bored 🙂

Your basic plank can be executed with arms fully extended or with your elbows bent, “resting” on your forearms.

The Hollow Body Rock

The hollow body rock is one of those other moves that is super efficient and yields high returns. It’s a fantastic stabilizing move that engages all of your core and back muscles, building a rock solid core that will support you through your toughest tasks. It’s a fairly easy move to execute though it may take a little getting used to.

Start lying on your back, arms extended overhead and “glued to your ears, legs straight with toes pointed.

Press your back into the floor as you raise your shoulders off the floor, engaging your lats (on either side of your rib cage) along with all your core muscles.

Keeping muscles tight rock back and forth raising and lowering arms and legs simultaneously without breaking at the hips.  Your body will look like a shallow C and must move as one unit.

Toes to the Ceiling

Alright I’m not sure what the formal name is for this move but I love it because it works the lower abdominal wall beautifully! Those lower abs are the ones that are so hard to restore after pregnancy.

The move is fairly simple to do but make sure you use your abs not momentum to reach your toes up high.

Lay on your back, hands by your hips.

Lift your feet up, legs straight, bending at the hip so your body forms an L shape.

Pressing your palms into the ground and using your core reach your toes to the ceiling as high as you can raising your hips if you can. Make sure you are aiming up towards the ceiling not towards your head.

 

No matter how full my schedule is I commit to squeezing in 5 minutes of core each and every day. Yes even Sundays, it’s that important to me.  If 5 minutes a day seems like a lot, start with one or two, but commit to that time daily and you’ll be surprised how quickly you will feel and see results. Consistency is key and you are so worth it!

Are you ready to Rock that Core??

This week is all about core in our #holidaysweat challenge. Woohoo!

So why don’t join me and my fellow sweatpink sisters and rock that core and greet the holidays with a smile.

Keep our core strong graphic

My core goal for this week is to engage in 110 minutes of focused core work before I get on a plane to Malaysia on Saturday. I will dedicate 10 minutes a day, every day to this end and take a 60 minute PopPilates on Thursday. I’ve heard great things about this flow based core class and can’t wait to give it a try.

Share your core goals with me in the comments below and make sure to snap a few photos as you work that core and share them on our Facebook page and all your social media channels and remember to tag me (@vremilora) so I can cheer you on.

 

Comments

  1. Robin (Masshole Mommy) says:

    I can plank like nobody’s business. I hate it, but I do it because I know it’s good for me.

  2. Thanks for the workout tips. I really need to make it a priority to spend more time exercising especially with the holidays coming up.

  3. Curious if these would be o k for someone with lower back injuries?

    • It’s hard for me to give you an answer without knowing what is the cause of your pain and doing a personal evaluation Sophia. I would suggest you talk to your healthcare provider and / or a personal trainer. As a general rule a strong core is essential for preventing back injuries and I would encourage you to determine which core exercises are best for you and get in the habit of doing 5 minutes of core work a day and focusing on keeping your core active as much as possible throughout the day but especially when you participate in activities that could put some strain on your back… dishes, laundry, computer work, carrying groceries, changing a baby… and so many more!

  4. Thanks for sharing these moves. My body is changing in ways I don’t like. These exercises seem doable.

    • If there is one thing we can count on Lucero, is that our bodies will keep changing. This workout is a great way to maintain some control while keeping your energy high and your productivity along with it. Good luck!

  5. You are amazing. If I were younger and healthier I’d go for some of these exercises.

  6. I’m currently working on my core. Yeah, we’ll see how it goes. I’m doing kind of a half sit up and holding it. It seems to be working though. These ideas are great, gotta take it slow though.

    Lee

  7. The toes to the ceiling exercise does wonders for the abs. I really like that one.

  8. I can’t wait to focus on my core again. Only a few more months to go 🙂

  9. I will definitely be trying the Toes to the Ceiling one! I think my lower belly is my biggest issue right now after having had my second c-section last year- it’s a big ol’ mess in my core area.

  10. Thanks for the workout tips. I need to begin working out again. It’s been too long for sure.

  11. Jacqueline Webb says:

    I am actually trying to get back into shape and these exercises seem perfect. Thanks for sharing them.

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