6-Minute Abs + A Palo Alto Excursion
After weeks of traveling and indulging, I decided I was going to get back on track this week — hit the gym hard, and eat super clean.
Then my fiancé coerced me into taking another trip.
He’s been working in Palo Alto recently and requested that Chow and I drive up to visit him. We love a good road trip, so we eagerly agreed.
So much for shredding for wedding, I thought. Here goes another weekend of skipping workouts and eating every meal out.
Well, not this time.
With the wedding about a month away, it’s crunch time and I’m getting serious even if it means I have to do pull-ups from a hotel room balcony.
Ok, that’s a little extreme, and I actually couldn’t do it if I tried. But what I can do is come up with quick, efficient workouts to do in my hotel room (in between sight-seeing) that don’t require any equipment.
So this weekend, in between trying to avoid the frozen yogurt shop directly across from our hotel, I created a series of 6-minute, targeted workouts for each of my main body parts.
They’re each 6 minutes long, consist of 6 exercises, and can be done anywhere.
Today’s abs routine is a major core-burner, but also totally doable for people of all activity levels.
Next month, I will be traveling almost every weekend as well, so I plan on sharing the other three workouts — arms, legs, and booty — with you guys along the way.
Ready for the first workout? Let’s do it!
6-Minute Anywhere Abs
I emphasize slow here because all too often I see people spazing out on bicycles.
The bicycle is one of the best exercises you can do to engage all of your abdominal muscles, but it doesn’t work if you don’t do it properly. The correct execution of the bicycle requires a slow, controlled movement, alternating your legs directly out in front of you, then bringing knee to shoulder (not knee to elbow). If you go too fast, you let momentum take over — not to mention you get jerky, and can twerk your back or neck.
2. Scissor Kicks – 1 minute
With your shoulders raised off the ground, quickly alternate lifting each leg, back and forth, always keeping both off the ground and straight. Give your leg a little tug toward your face each time you switch, and breath out as your crunch in.
3. Side V-Crunches – 30 seconds per side
While resting on your side on the soft part of your glute, place your hands behind your back for stabilization. Crunch both legs in toward your chest, then extend directly out in front of you, keeping your feet together, and reclining your back toward the floor. Perform this exercise quickly, but controlled, maintaining your balance and position.
4. Reverse Crunch – 1 minute
Grab ahold of a chair or the bottom of a sofa for support, or you can simply cross your hands behind your head. Tuck your knees in toward your chest exhaling as you engage your abs and raise your legs over your head. Very slowly, release your legs, still bent, toward the ground — but do not let your feet touch the floor.
Repeat slowly and steadily for the entire minute, focusing on breath.
5. One-legged Traveling Dog – 30 sec per side
Beginning in downward dog position with your back flat and legs straight, lift one leg to the ceiling. Glide forward, keeping the leg raised, into a one-legged plank. Push back into one-legged dog.
Repeat for 30 seconds, as quickly as you can while still maintaining your balance and posture, and focusing on engaging your core. Repeat with the other leg.
6. Plank Twist n’ Kick – 1 minute.
Starting in plank position, bring your knee to the alternating elbow. Twist as much as possible and then kick your leg straight out to the side, without touching the ground. Return to starting position and switch legs.
Go back and forth for one minute, exhaling as you twist and aiming to keep your leg as straight and lifted as possible.
I paired my 6-minutes workouts with runs around the area with Mr. Chow and it proved to be a pretty good alternative to my normal gym routines at home. If this workout is too easy for you, I challenge you to do it twice through.
Despite still eating almost every meal out while on vacay this weekend, Palo Alto proved to have a lot of healthy options.
If you ever visit, I highly encourage you try…
Phenomenal acai bowls.
Delicious and healthy, farm-to-table fare. We ate practically every meal here – breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Amazing egg white omelets and fun for the whole family (as you can see).
Organic cold-pressed juices without added sugar — the perfect refreshment post-run.
I hope you’ll join in over the next month with these 6-minute workouts, and help motivate me to stay in wedding workout mode. Let me know if you try any and what you think!