I was at the gym last night, and in between sets, I noticed a couple of girls doing a core workout. They were alternating between crunches, planks, and flutter kicks. As I often do, I take note of what other people around me are doing at the gym. Sometimes I’ll see someone doing something awesome and start incorporating their exercise techniques into my own workouts. Other times I’ll see something being done incorrectly or half-assed, and it’ll probably a little motivation to touch on it in a blog post. In this case, it’s the latter (I promise I don’t judge!).
The Mistakes Most People Make
The girls had the right idea, but they lacked the focus and intensity required to make any actual changes. This got me thinking. The more I thought about it, the more I realized most people I see doing abdominal work are all making similar mistakes…
- Too long of rest periods between sets
- Stopping before adequately fatiguing the muscles
- Performing similar exercises which only hit limited areas of your core muscles
- Not pushing themselves past the point of that intial “burn”
Your abdominals are easy to work, but hard to work effectively. They are accustomed to supporting your weight and keeping you upright throughout the day; because of this, they need to really be pounded to realize any significant changes. Unlike a muscle such as your rear delts which don’t see much repetitive stress and can be worked to exhaustion fairly easily, your abdominals are a tough nut to crack. To maximize effectiveness, an abdominal routine needs to have a heightened degree of focus, planning, and intensity. Anything else, and you’ll likely be spinning your wheels.
Think about yourself for a minute. How long have you been working on your core? If you’re like most people, you’ve probably been at it for a while. If you still aren’t seeing the changes you’d like, it is absolutely time to consider going about things in a different way. The problem described above is the exact reason we developed the idea of Pacer Training at Share It Fitness. Running through a list of exercises or watching a 10 minute video and then going off and replicating it on your own isn’t ideal. We believe in putting a real life personal trainer on your screen in front of you, running through an entire workout from start to finish, and allowing THEM to maintain the intensity and pace. You just follow along with the trainer.
This method of training has proved very successful as the most important variable has been controlled; intensity. You see, successful workouts all bring the proper intensity, while on the otherhand, time wasting workouts lack intensity. When you’re going through things on your own, it’s easy to take longer rest periods, not push yourself to complete a set, or do half reps when you fatigue. Pacer Training forces you to keep up with your trainer and encourages you to keep pushing until you’ve finished. If you’ve never trained in this style….get ready for a serious challenge.
With that in mind, we’ve got a really great 30-minute core routine that is guaranteed to leave your muscles feeling the afterburn. This routine utilizes isometric holds, a variety of crunches, and an exercise ball to hit your entire core in a variety of ways. Even better, our trainer Jessica keeps an uptempo pace as she flows through the workout, making sure the hard to hit core muscles are adequately fatigued by the end of this workout.
If you’re feeling up for the challenge, click HERE to take this Core Crunch workout challenge NOW!
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