Yeah, yeah, abs are made in the kitchen. I hear you, and I see all the nice hashtags you included to make your point.

Here's my response: Don't take training for granted, though. If your workouts are on point, those abs will pop and make your core, and overall physique, look even more impressive.

If you need a new protocol, try this one out. But beware, you're going to feel it for a few days afterward. If you need help with any of these exercises, refer to the exercise database for tutorials and tips.

The Ab Workout You'll Feel Till Next Week
Hanging leg raise
slow sets
3 sets, failure (rest 60 sec. between sets)
+ 4 more exercises


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Technique Keys

Hanging Leg Raise

This isn't a traditional hanging leg raise, where you lift up and down as fast as you can. For this exercise, each rep you perform will take 10-12 seconds.

The Ab Workout You'll Feel Til Next Week

Lift your legs out and hold them for up to 5 seconds. After that, perform a 5-second negative. Once your legs are back to the starting position, lift them immediately back up and repeat the hold and negatives. If you can do 10 of these, use ankle weights or a dumbbell between your feet.

Once you reach failure, rest for 1 minute before going again. If you have back issues, do these on the floor but lift your hips up when your legs come up.

Weighted Decline Sit-up

You can hold a barbell, dumbbell, medicine ball, or whatever other heavy object you have close at hand. Whatever you choose, hold it up at arm's length as you lie on the bench. As you sit up, keep your arms straight, like you're trying to touch the ceiling with the weight.

When you reach the top, force all of your air out. You should feel a little extra squeeze of the abs when you do this. Slowly lower yourself back down to the bench but don't lie back completely. Stop just short of your upper back touching the bench and raise back up again. Once you reach failure or 15 reps, rest for 1 minute and go again.

Air Bike

Upper, lower, obliques—you're going to feel this everywhere. Instead of counting reps here, you're going to work with the clock. Start a timer or position yourself so you can see the second hand of a clock around you. Once you start, you continue for a whole minute. Even if you can't complete the full range of motion, do whatever you can do until a minute passes. Rest for 1 minute before giving it another go.


The good news is you don't even have to move to do this one. The bad news is, it's still going to burn. Remember to keep your abs tight and force the air out of your abdomen.

The Ab Workout You'll Feel Til Next Week

Don't allow your stomach to relax! If you can hold a plank for longer than a minute, have a partner place a plate on your back for an extra challenge. Rest a minute, then do it again.

About the Author

Roger Lockridge

Roger Lockridge

Bodybuilding is the reason I am who I am today. I am more confident in myself, actually looking for the next challenge, and inspiring others.

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