Friday Fitness: Crazy for Core

Why is America so fanatical for rock hard abs, what’s the point?  We’ve really got to shift our focus away from the beach body abs and discover the true importance to strengthening our core.  Most core and abdominal exercises are never very fun; however it is the one subdivision of our bodies essential to train.  What’s awesome is that even when we’re doing squats, lunges, up downs, mountain climbers, and pushups (sound H3 familiar?); we are still engaging our core.


In a nut shell, the core is our body’s stabilizer and it is essential for not only sport performance and DLA’s, but a strong core means good posture, spinal alignment, improved balance, and a strong back. You may not know, but the core’s main purpose is to defend our vital organs and to serve as the protector of our central nervous system. It is also the prime foundation for our limbs!


The real reasoning behind building our abdominals is so that they may assist our core in it’s stabilization efforts, along with helping out the muscles in our backs.  The abdominal muscles serve numerous purposes, go ahead and take a glance:

–  Protect the spinal cord and provide stability in our daily lives

–  Visceral support and respiratory support

–  Circulatory/immune system support

–  Digestion/elimination system support

–  Essential stabilizer muscles for the core

–  Prevent core and spinal column injury


All and all, this info gets us away from the aesthetic side of abdominals and really shows us that trained abdominal muscles = overall core security.  Below is a quick circuit that will take merely 10 minutes or less, most importantly it will help get you crazy about engaging your core!   


Goal: 30 second intervals, 2 to 4 Sets, 2 minutes and 30 seconds per set  


The Clam-  Bend knees at 90 degrees, lace fingers behind your head, thumbs behind your ears. Perform a basic crunch motion towards your knees that are still up at 90 degrees. This will engage lower and upper abdominals. (30 sec)


Cross Crunch-  Start with left ankle crossed over right knee, lift right elbow towards left knee, lift the shoulder blade as far off the mat as you can! Switch sides. (30 sec each side)


Stomp the Ceilings – Both legs raised towards the ceiling, slightly lift hips up off the floor, contracting the lower abs. Small movement, but careful not to swing your legs.  (30 sec)


Pointer Dog – In dog position, which is kneeling on all fours of course! Lift opposite arm and opposite leg, switching throughout the interval. (30 sec)

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