To trim your waistline, you need cardio to burn off layers of fat, as well as strength-training exercises to tone and define your muscles. This combination will help you achieve a slimmer, more sculpted midriff. Stick with moderate to high intensity cardio and targeted muscle-building exercises to get the results you're after.
Start with Cardio
Cardio activity is essential to include in your total workout plan if you want to slim down. Cardio exercise such as walking, jogging, running, cycling, rowing, jumping rope or doing jumping jacks will blast away calories, burning fat from all over your body, including the abdomen. Although you can't spot reduce any particular area of your body, there are certain cardio exercises that engage the abs more than others, such as burpees, mountain climbers and squat thrusts.
Do the Dumbbell Push Crunch
The dumbbell push crunch targets the rectus abdominis muscles that sit at the front of the abdomen. Lie flat on an incline bench with your feet secured under the foot pad. Extend your arms straight above you, holding a dumbbell in each hand with your palms facing forward. Engage your core and flex at the waist, raising your upper back off the bench. Lower back down for one rep.
Chop Wood for Slimmer Abs
The standing chop wood exercise targets the ab muscles and all you need is a medicine ball to do it. Stand straight with one foot a couple of feet in front of the other, your arms extended out in front of you, hands grasping onto the handles of a medicine ball. Keeping your arms straight, angle them over and up to the left side, so the ball is at shoulder-level. Engage your core and swing your arms to the left and down, until the ball sits beside your right thigh. Repeat, then do it on the opposite side.
Add Weight to Your Crunch
Although the crunch is a more basic ab exercise, it can get you big results, especially when you incorporate weight to add resistance. Lie flat on your back on a weight bench. Rest your head in your hands, a weight plate sandwiched between your head and hands. Flex at the waist, bringing your torso up toward your knees as far as you can without raising your lower back off the bench. Lower back down to complete one rep.
Barbell Push Sit-Up for Sculpted Abs
The barbell push sit-up works the rectus abdominis muscles as well as the obliques on the sides, helping to slim and sculpt all around your waistline. Lie on your back on an incline bench, feet secured under the foot pad, arms extended above you holding onto a barbell. Position your hands so they're aligned over your shoulders. Engage your core and raise your torso, moving your chest up to your knees. Lower yourself back down to your starting position for one rep.
Tips to Maximize Your Results
You may have your workout regimen down pat, but if you're not eating right, you're not getting the results you could be. Eat lots of fruits and veggies to get the vitamins and minerals your body needs, and protein-rich foods such as egg whites, salmon and chickpeas. Include at least three 30-minute cardio sessions a week, along with three to five strength-training workouts completing three sets of 12 reps of each exercise.