3 amazing exercises for bikini bod abs
I’ve been big into yoga for the past five years, but only a little over a year ago did I find out about what amazing results you can get from personal training! Diana Szekely is my trainer and the owner and founder of The D Method. Literally in the first 3 months of working with her and paying strict attention to her diet instructions (yes, she even modified for my vegan lifestyle) I lost 10 pounds and completely toned up. What’s even more amazing is that I’ve kept the same figure for even over a year later. Since it’s always sunny and basically perfect weather in LA, we do all training sessions outside, specifically by the ocean in Santa Monica. Not a bad office, right?
I’ve been meeting with Diana (pictured above…isn’t she so beautiful?:) consistently once a week for a little over a year. She is always analyzing my body to make sure certain muscle groups get extra attention (what girl doesn’t want a super firm booty!) and somehow keeps it super interesting and unpredictable. I’ve never done the same routine twice! Because we train outside we use a limited amount of equipment, making all exercises incredibly easy to repeat at home.
I wanted to share 3 of my favorite ab exercises that Diana has me do in our sessions. Before you get into these exercises, it’s recommended that you do a little bit of “ab activation.” This is as simple as a one-minute plank and 30-second side planks. This warms up those muscles and makes sure that they’re working extra hard for you!
Twisting Scissors – to start lay on your back, fingers gently cradling your head. With your chin up and tucked under bring your legs straight up. Start by lifting your shoulders off the ground and keeping your neck and spine in alignment. Reach your right elbow to your left knee, lowering your right leg and then switch reach your left elbow to your right knee, lowering your left leg. Lower your legs as close to the ground as you can mange with good form. Reach your elbow as close to your knee as you can. Beginners start with 10- 15 reps, and as you increase strength try and reach 20 reps. Repeat 2x.
Hip Lift and Twist – lay on your back, hands out at a 45 degree angle. Palms can either face down on the ground or to make it harder, face your palms up. Bring your right leg over the left, lift your hips off the ground an inch and twist to the right. Bring your lower back and booty down to center keep lifting and twisting in this fashion for prescribed number of reps. While this looks pretty unassuming, it’s a killer! I can’t believe how just a little movement like that makes your abs BURN! Do the same movement with the twist to the other side. Repeat the twist to one side for 10-15 reps for beginners and eventually to 20 reps. Repeat 2x.
Knee to Elbow Crunch – to start lay on your back, fingers gently cradling your head. With your chin up and tucked under bring your knees up at a 90 degree angle. Start by lifting your shoulders off the ground keeping your neck and spine in alignment. Reach your elbows to your knees crunching your abs, then extend both legs away and rest your upper back down on the ground. Keep your feet just above the ground. This one normally comes at the end of our sessions, when I can barely keep my feet off the ground! But WOW, what an amazing feeling when you’ve finished. Crunch for 20 reps. Repeat 2x.
Diana has been so supportive and motivating over the past year! I LOVE our sessions and I absolutely recommend her to anyone in the LA area. If you can’t make it to Santa Monica, she also travels for a little extra. She’s not only an amazing trainer but has become an awesome friend! Cheers to exceptional health and body image, it’s priceless!!