Certified Personal Trainer

A 10-Minute Circuit Workout for Flat Abs

By Holly Perkins Updated January 9, 2020

Sculpting sleek abs isn’t just about the front-and-center six-pack muscles — it’s about your entire core from chest and upper back to glutes and hip flexors. This workout hits all those muscles and everything in between.

Top view of young fit woman working-out doing bicycle crunches on blue mat indoors.

In just 10 minutes, you’ll be on your way to flatter abs.Credit: undrey/iStock/GettyImages

Do: each move for 45 seconds, then rest for 15 seconds. Repeat this 5-minute circuit twice (or as many times as you’d like with good form). You can also combine it with any of our other 10-minute workouts, including one for gluteslegsarms and back.

1. Weighted Crunch

Man doing a weighted crunch to work his abs.

Here’s how to do a weighted crunch with proper form.Credit: LIVESTRONG.com

  1. Lie on your back with knees bent and pointed up to the ceiling. Hold a medicine ball or dumbbell above your chest.
  2. Using just the power of your abdominal muscles, lift your torso off the ground and sit up.
  3. Lower back down to the start slowly and with control.

Tip

In order to truly improve the strength of your core muscles, it’s important to incorporate this kind of resistance move. Be sure to move deliberately, focusing on the quality of contraction for each rep. Raise and lower your torso only using your abs — not your neck.

2. Bird Dog

Man doing the bird-dog exercise to work his abs.

Here’s how to do the bird-dog exercise with proper form.Credit: LIVESTRONG.com

  1. Begin on all fours, hands under shoulders and knees under hips.
  2. Raise your right arm and left leg to parallel, using your core to stabilize you.
  3. Lower back down to the start.
  4. Repeat, this time raising your left arm and right leg to parallel.
  5. Lower back down and continue alternating sides.

Tip

During this exercise, brace your core strongly as if preparing to be punched in the stomach. This kind of contraction emphasizes proper function of the torso and is particularly important for this move.

3. Side Plank

Man doing a side plank to work his abs.

Here’s how to do a side plank with proper form.Credit: LIVESTRONG.com

  1. You can start out in a regular plank and then roll onto one side or start lying on your side and raise yourself up.
  2. Ensure that your body is in perfect alignment from shoulders to hips to ankles and that your hips are stacked on top of each other.
  3. Do a right-side plank on the first round and a left-side plank on the second round.

4. Bicycle Crunches

Man doing bicycle crunches to work his abs.

Here’s how to do bicycle crunches with proper form.Credit: LIVESTRONG.com

  1. Lie on your back with your hands behind your head.
  2. Bring your right elbow to your left knee. Aim to twist from your torso and shoulders without reaching with your elbows.
  3. Twist back to center before switching sides so that your left elbow meets your right knee.
  4. Continue alternating sides.

Tip

Before you begin your reps, brace your core strongly as if preparing to be punched in the stomach. This will cause the front of your body to hollow out into a contracted position. Hold this contracted position as you execute this move.

5. Boat Pose

Man doing Boat pose to work his abs.

Here’s how to do Boat pose with proper form.Credit: LIVESTRONG.com

  1. Start seated, then lean back into a V shape, with your arms out in front of you for balance. 
  2. Make sure to keep your neck in alignment and take short, regular breaths. 
  3. Draw inward through your torso and brace your abs as if preparing to be punched in the stomach.

Try these exercises as you work towards your goals to a flatter defined stomach. Make it a great day!!!

Philip “FitGuy46”

Published by FitGuy46

Hi I’m a recent grad from NASM. I am a Certified Personal Trainer. I specialize in fitness assessment, program design and weight training. I want to help people who have had difficulties in the past incorporating fitness as a lifetime goal. My desire is to help potential clients see fitness as a lifetime endeavor. My philosophy is that fitness should be sustainable and a lifelong goal. My plan as a fitness coach is to teach my clients to make and incorporate fitness as a permanent part of their lives to be engaging, and for the outcome to continuously be revolving into a better physical shape. Make it a GREAT DAY!!! Philip “FitGuy46”

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