Question: Any good workouts for the lower abs? Needing help with that. Thanks!
Answer: There is not a specific exercise for this as you cannot spot reduce. You actually end up working the whole area even if you are trying to emphasize just the upper or lower piece. One thing that will help emphasize and make you feel this area is a hanging knee tuck. Hang from a bar and bring your legs up in front of you with your knees at a 90 degree angle. Lift your knees half-way up to your torso and return in a slow motion. This will make you feel the lower portion more but you are working every muscle.
Check out our YouTube video for a Hanging Knee Tuck Demonstration.
GUEST BLOGGER | Chad Ruf, Director of Personal Training
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Do us a favor. The next time you get hungry, repeat this phrase: sugar is not my friend. Say it three times. Because it isn’t. It really isn’t. Sugar leads to weight gain, cavities, diabetes, all kinds of gruesome things. The trouble is it can be hard to avoid. It’s in that box of Krispy Kremes to be sure. But it also shows up in less obvious places, like instant oatmeal and fruit juice. It’s pesky that way. The good news is there are ways to identify it and eliminate it from your diet. It just takes a little knowledge and determination. Let us point you in the right direction.
- Be Wary of Packaging Promises. It’s the height of irony when a packaged food says it’s healthy when it isn’t, at least not completely. An example is instant oatmeal. You may see enticing words about fiber and heart health on the box and think this is a no-brainer. But read the ingredients and you’ll that flavored oatmeal is often loaded with sugar, about three teaspoons per packet. This is the case with many popular packaged foods. Read labels. That’s how you win.
- Indulge in Healthy Fats. The science is simple:high-sugar foods cause blood-sugar spikes. Follow this down the rabbit hole though and you get into a nasty cycle of cravings, spikes, and more sugar. Think about substitutions. One smart one is to go with healthy fats instead. Avocado on your morning toast or olive oil with your evening pasta. Such substitutions can make big differences in your sugar intake.
- Educate Yourself. Here’s where things can get tricky. There are 56 names for sugar and the food industry uses all of them. A company will often tinker with the product’s formula so sugar shows up further down on the ingredient list, often under a different name. But make no mistake: sugar is sugar. Look for it carefully. This goes for sugary beverages as well, including soda and fruit drinks.
- Consider Why You’re Eating Sugary Foods. This has less to do with what you’re eating than why you’re eating. Do you reach for sugary foods when you’re stressed out? When you’re sad? Can you identify an emotion behind your choices? That can be a key to breaking unhealthy patterns.
- Love Yourself More Than Sugar. You may find yourself wanting to binge on a pint of ice cream after having a rough day. But stop and think before you scoop. Do you end up feeling guilty and shameful after binging? If so, it’s not worth it. Replace the behavior with something healthier, such as a trip to the gym. You’ll feel better.
- Boost Your Serotonin. A hormonal imbalance may be contributing to sugar cravings. Stress and multitasking can deplete your serotonin levels. If you sense your mood is dipping and your food choices are unhealthy, check in with a Snap Fitness trainer. Aerobic exercise is a great way to get your serotonin back where it should be and we can help make that happen.
- Use Exercise As Your Reward. An exercise high is much better than a sugar high. Replace snacks with endorphins and you’ll be living your best life.
We know not every trip to the gym is going to produce a killer workout. Some days you just don’t have the best energy. We get it. But every trip to a Snap Fitness gym can be fun. The key is to have some friendly faces waiting for you. Not only will it be make your experience a blast, it will help you stay in shape. A recent study by the Society of Behavioral Medicine shows that training with a partner has the potential to double your exercise performance. The reasons are simple: gym friends hold you accountable, provide friendly competition, and boost your spirits. So get out there and be social! We’ll show you how to make those connections.
Initiate a Conversation. It can be as easy as something like, “Have you taken this class before?” Or ask someone about the magazine they’re carrying while in line for the water fountain. Something light and breezy.
I Feel Your Pain. Whether it’s commiserating with eye contact during a tough squat set or a smile during a difficult yoga hold, connecting during exercise is a great way to build rapport.
Debrief. After a good workout, try something like “Man, I needed that,” plus a few words that open up the conversation to your non-gym life. Maybe “I just got back from a vacation so I’m feeling out of shape,” or “I haven’t taken a yoga class since I was in college,” anything that opens the door for the other person to respond.
Ask Them To Hang Out. Follow up. Don’t be aggressive or annoying—some people aren’t looking to make friends at the gym. But a lot of people are in the same boat as you, and just need a little bit of nudging to inch themselves out of their comfort zone.
Be Consistent. Working out at the same time each day is a great way to become familiar with other people on the same schedule.
Smile. Smiling is an introvert’s best friend. Sometimes that’s all it takes to spark up a connection.
Talk to the Staff. At Snap Fitness we have referral programs and promotions that can help ease the process along. Check in with us next time you’re in. We’ll get you connected with some cool people.