You don’t need a complete overhaul to make your six packs show. Targeting the entire core from a variety of angles and removing less effective moves like crunches.

I have exercises below to develop the ultimate abs.

Switching things up, keeping things interesting and avoiding the training rut. You get to choose the exercises!

Select an exercise from each group to enjoy a unique and well rounded core workout every time you train.

Incorporate 4-5 of these moves into your workout three days a week. Choose one exercise from each group if you are a beginner, or 1-2 if you are a more advanced lifter.

Upper Abs And External Obliques

3 sets per exercise, 20-30 reps per set

  • Ball pike or ball knee tuck. Click here to see how to do: The swiss ball pike
  • Alternating arm raise from plank (Use dumbbells to add tension once confident)
  • Mountain climbers with feet in suspension strap stirrups. Click here to see how to do: The mountain climber
  • Mountain climbers with feet on sliders
  • Side plank with leg lifts (train each side)
  • Seated Russian twists (train each side). Click here to see how to do: Russian twists
  • Overhead medicine ball slams

Related article: Create Abs Of Steel With These Five Core Burning Exercises

Lower Abs And Internal Obliques

3 sets per exercise, 20-30 reps per set

  • Hanging knee raises (increase difficulty by performing hanging windshield wipers). Click here to see how to do: Hanging knee raises
  • Knee/hip raises on parallel bars
  • Reverse crunch (increase difficulty by performing on a decline bench or by adding a dumbbell between the feet). Click here to see how to do: Reverse crunch
  • Hanging knee raise with oblique twist
  • Knee/hip raise on parallel bars with oblique twist

Related article: 17 Most Effective Abs and Core Exercises To Do At The Gym

Total Core Isometric Holds

3 sets per exercise

  • Push up position or elbow plank, hold for 30 sec- to 1 min, depending on ability
  • Forearm side plank, hold for 30 sec per side
  • Plank to side plank, alternate sides for 30 sec a piece. (Plank / Left side plank / Plank / Right side plank / Plank)
  • Alternating arm raise from plank position, alternating continuously for 30 sec
  • Alternating leg raise from plank position, alternating continuously for 30 sec
  • Alternating arm and leg raise from plank position, pairing opposite leg and arm, raising for 30 sec
  • Alternating arm and leg plank from tabletop (face-up) position, alternating continuously for 30 sec

Back Extensions

3 sets per exercise, 20-30 reps per set

  • Back extension on an exercise ball (perform with weight for increased difficulty)
  • Superman (hold for 3 sec, lower and repeat. Do this for 30-45 sec per set). Click here to see how to do: Superman
  • Hyper extension or back extension on a 45-degree bench, glute ham developer or tabletop with feet held

Nutrition Tips For Your Abs

You can train your abs to exhaustion and not end up with definition.

“Abs are made in the kitchen.” there’s truth to this adage. Nutrition plays a large role in assisting your workouts, helping you recover and dropping body fat hiding your core.

  • Eliminate highly processed foods. This includes excess sugars and alcohol, not just fast food.
  • Choose fresh alternatives. Consuming fresh foods cuts back on sodium and preservatives.
  • Add more vegetables. Adding some fresh greens throughout the day adds fibre which will help aid digestion.
  • Hydrate. In addition to many other health benefits, good hydration helps minimise bloating to reveal abs.
  • Be sensible. Restrictive diet plans do more harm than good. Make smarter, healthier choices the majority of the time and watch these slight changes add up to great results.

Adhering to a balanced nutrition approach year round is the best way to get and maintain great abs. Rather than completely eliminating foods, focus on consuming lean proteins, heart healthy fats and an assortment of carbs every day to fuel training and support physique goals.