5 Speedy 10-Minute Workouts for Visible Abs
A solid set of abdominals is arguably the most sought-after fitness goal. If you are anything like myself or my clients, sculpting lean, shredded abs is a top priority in your fitness routine. Building a six-pack requires a combo of losing enough body fat to reveal your abs and finding the right workouts to ensure that area of your body gains a solid amount of muscle tone and definition. However, if you struggle to find the time to do your core workouts, you might feel like you've hit a wall when it comes to realizing your physique goals. That's where I come in with five 10-minute core workouts for abs that are visibly toned.
You heard that right! An effective workout doesn't need to take an excessive amount of your time. In fact, you can hit virtually all the muscle groups in your abdominal region in just 10 minutes. The following are my top five core workouts, each of which takes 10 minutes to complete. I recommend choosing three of them and performing each one a minimum of one time per week. If you are super ambitious, you can perform all five across the week. Be sure to take two days off per week interspersed between your workout days.
Keep reading to learn all about these five 10-minute core workouts for abs that are sculpted and toned. And when you're finished, be sure to check out the 5 Best Bodyweight Exercises To Lose Belly Overhang in 30 Days.
Workout #1: Stability Special
The first of these 10-minute core workouts for abs is the "stability special," kicking off with planks. The plank is a foundational core exercise that aids in strengthening the entire abdominal region and enhancing stability. It works the rectus abdominis, obliques, and transverse abdominis.
To perform a plank, start by placing your forearms on the ground with your elbows aligned below your shoulders. Extend your legs behind you with your toes touching the ground. Keep your body in a straight line from your head to your heels. Engage your core, and hold this position. Complete three sets of 30 seconds with 20 seconds of rest between sets.
2. Side Planks
The side plank is excellent for enhancing oblique strength and improving the overall balance of the body. It primarily targets the obliques and the deep core stabilizers.
To perform a side plank, lie on your side with your legs straight and your feet stacked. Prop yourself up on your forearm, ensuring your elbow is directly under your shoulder. Lift your hips off the ground, maintaining a straight line from your head to your heels. Hold the position, engaging your obliques. Complete two sets of 30 seconds per side with 20 seconds of rest.
3. Bird Dog
The bird dog is a dynamic movement that enhances core stability and coordination. This exercise focuses on your rectus abdominis, obliques, and erector spinae.
To perform a bird dog, begin on all fours in a tabletop position. Extend your right arm forward and your left leg backward simultaneously. Hold the extended position briefly, squeezing your abs. Return to the starting position, and switch sides. Complete three sets of 10 reps per side with 15 seconds of rest between sets.
Workout #2: Movement Magic
1. Russian Twists
The Russian twist is a rotational move that helps enhance functional strength by specifically targeting the obliques. It's an excellent addition when it comes to core workouts for abs. To perform a Russian twist, sit on the floor with your knees bent and your feet flat. Lean back slightly, keeping your spine straight. Hold your hands together in front of you. Rotate your torso to one side, then the other. Complete three sets of 20 repetitions (10 on each side) with 20 seconds of rest between sets.
2. Mountain Climbers
Mountain climbers are a dynamic exercise that strengthens the core and elevates the heart rate. This move primarily targets the rectus abdominis, obliques, and hip flexors.
To perform mountain climbers, start in a plank position with your hands under your shoulders. Drive one knee toward your chest without letting your back arch. Switch legs, driving the other knee forward. Continue alternating legs in a brisk motion. Complete three sets of 30 seconds with 20 seconds of rest between sets.
3. Leg Raises
Leg raises are particularly effective for targeting the lower abdominal muscles and improving hip flexibility.
To perform leg raises, lie flat on your back with your arms by your sides. Lift your legs off the ground, keeping them straight. Raise your legs to a 90-degree angle, then lower them without letting them touch the floor. Ensure your lower back remains pressed into the ground throughout. Complete three sets of 15 repetitions with 20 seconds rest between sets.
Workout #3: Isometric Burner
1. Hollow Hold
The hollow hold is a challenging isometric exercise that intensely works the entire core.
To perform a hollow hold, lie on your back, and extend your arms above your head. Lift your legs, arms, and upper back off the ground. Engage your core, ensuring your lower back is in contact with the floor. Hold this position, visualizing drawing your lower rib toward your pelvis.
Complete three sets of 20 seconds with 20 seconds of rest between sets.
2. Boat Pose
The boat pose, a classic yoga stance, offers an intense core challenge. This exercise primarily focuses on the rectus abdominis and hip flexors.
To perform a boat pose, sit on the floor with your knees bent. Lean back slightly, and lift your feet off the ground. Extend your arms in front of you, parallel to the ground. Balance on your sit bones, and hold the position. Perform three sets of 20 seconds with 20 seconds of rest between sets.
3. Pallof Press
The Pallof press is a unique exercise that challenges the core's anti-rotational capabilities, ensuring a balanced core strength.
To perform a Pallof press, stand perpendicular to a cable machine or resistance band anchored at chest height. Grab the handle or band with both hands, and step away to create tension. Hold the handle at chest level, arms extended, and resist the pull from the side. Press the handle straight out in front of you, then return to the chest. Repeat for target repetitions, ensuring you don't allow rotation or side bending. Complete three sets of 12 repetitions on each side with 20 seconds of rest between sets.
Workout #4: Dynamic Trio
1. Bicycle Crunches
Bicycle crunches are a versatile exercise that combines the benefits of a crunch with a rotational twist, offering both strength and flexibility benefits.
To perform bicycle crunches, lie on your back with your hands behind your head and your legs lifted off the ground. Bring your right elbow toward your left knee while extending the right leg out. Switch sides, bringing the left elbow toward the right knee. Continue alternating in a pedaling motion. Perform three sets of 20 repetitions (10 on each side) with 20 seconds of rest between sets.
2. Reverse Crunches
The reverse crunch specifically targets the lower region of the abs, challenging the muscles in a different manner than traditional crunches.
To perform a reverse crunch, lie on your back with your arms by your sides and your knees bent. Lift your feet off the ground with your knees at a 90-degree angle. Curl your hips off the ground, bringing your knees toward your chest. Slowly lower your hips back to the starting position. Complete three sets of 15 repetitions with 20 seconds of rest between sets.
3. Flutter Kicks
Flutter kicks are a dynamic exercise that tests endurance and strength, especially in the lower abs and hip flexors.
To perform flutter kicks, lie on your back with your hands under your glutes or by your sides. Lift both legs off the ground to a height where you can maintain a flat lower back. Alternate kicking each leg up and down in a fluttering motion. Keep the movement controlled and the core engaged. Perform three sets of 30 seconds with 20 seconds of rest between sets.
Workout #5: Power Play
The last of these 10-minute core workouts for abs is all about "power play," starting with planks to pushups. The plank-to-pushup transition offers a blend of core stabilization with upper-body strengthening.
To perform a plank to pushup, begin in a forearm plank position. Push up onto your right hand, followed by your left, transitioning into a high plank or pushup position. Return to the forearm plank by lowering onto your right forearm, followed by the left. Alternate the leading hand with each repetition. Perform three sets of 10 repetitions with 20 seconds of rest between sets.
2. Toe Touches
Toe touches are a fantastic way to engage the upper region of the abs, emphasizing the rectus abdominis's contraction.
To perform toe touches, lie on your back with your legs lifted straight up toward the ceiling. Extend your arms toward your toes. Lift your upper back off the ground, reaching for your toes. Lower yourself back down without letting your shoulder blades touch the ground. Repeat for the target repetitions, squeezing at the end range for about one second. Complete three sets of 15 repetitions with 20 seconds of rest between sets.
3. Tuck Jumps
Tuck jumps are an explosive plyometric move that demands core engagement to lift the legs during the jump.
To perform tuck jumps, stand tall with your feet hip-width apart. Begin with a slight squat, then explosively jump upward. As you jump, tuck your knees toward your chest. Land softly, pushing through the full foot, and immediately prepare for the next jump. Complete three sets of 10 repetitions with 30 seconds of rest between sets.