How to Exercise Your Lower Abs

Want gorgeous abs that you can flaunt once you hit the beach? Put some action in your lower abs and exercise your lower abs today. Keep in mind, though, that in order to get great abs, you’ve got to commit yourself to a good overall workout and a healthy diet as well. If you’re already doing those, then you can start focusing on your lower abs for a more shapely body that really shows off your muscles.

Here’s how…

Rotate Supine Leg Walks

Lie on your back on an exercise mat. Place your hands under your buttocks, palm-side up. Lift one leg up as high as you can, making sure that the leg is straight but not strained. The leg should be high enough that you should be feeling tension in your midsection or your lower abs. Lower your leg a little and lift it again as before. Do the same for the other leg.

Alternating Supine Leg Walks

A variation of the exercise mentioned earlier, alternating supine leg walks also requires you to take the same position as the first one. Lie down on your back on an exercise mat and have your hands supporting your buttocks. Lift your legs together until they are vertical to the ground. Then slowly lower them back again until your toes are just a little bit above the ground.

Raise them again back to the vertical position. Alternate putting one leg down, and then the other. Raise both legs again. Tighten your midsection while doing this exercise.

Reverse Crunches

Lie on your back and put your hands under your buttocks to support them. Lift your legs as high as you can and then bend them at ninety degrees, with your knees a little way from the ground. Then bring your knees up to your chest, or as near to your chest as you can. Again, there should be tension in your lower abdominal section.

Leg Lifts

Lie down on your back, with your buttocks supported by the palms of your hands. Keep your feet together and slowly raise them up until they are vertical to the ground. Then slowly put your legs back down until they are parallel to the ground. Do not put your legs down! Hold them in place for a few seconds and raise them back up again.

These lower abdominal exercises should be integrated with your overall exercise routine. Do them every other day and mix it up with other routines as not to cause injury. Make sure that you have a proper exercise mat. If you have a back injury, make sure that you check first with a doctor before attempting these exercises.

How to Stay Motivated to Exercise

Having the motivation to fit exercise into your schedule is a very real problem for most people.

Excuses come up fast and often, including a busy schedule, tiredness and not wanting to go through too much trouble. However, it is not impossible to stay on to your exercise goals. Just start small. Here’s how.

List Your Goals

Make a list of your exercise and diet goals and post copies of it anywhere you may see it most often. Keep in mind that goals must be sustainable and realistic. While Hollywood moms boast of losing baby weight in two months, keep in mind that people should lose their weight at a healthier pace. You can start with 30 minute exercises three times a week, and add another day when you’ve become more accustomed to it.

You can list your goals weekly, and then tally them up with what you were able to accomplish. You will then be able to review what goals you’ve been able to meet and any realignment you may need to do.

You should also keep track of your goals, which should include:

  • Current weight/desired weight
  • Calorie intake
  • Calories burned
  • Body measurements
  • Reward Yourself

Give yourself small rewards and favors after a week of successfully completing your goals. It can be a spa, a mani/pedi, that book or CD that you’ve been eying. Or it can be an indulgence in your favorite dessert!

Whatever it is, having an instant gratification (weight loss doesn’t come quickly) can help you go through the week to come.

Partner Up

Having a partner will make the process of dieting and exercising easier to bear. You can have someone to complain to (don’t make a habit of it, though), talk to, compare notes with, and you can even have a bit of competitive edge thrown in.

To up the ante a little bit, you can also have a competitive game among your peers. Officemates, housemates or classmates can all be part of a contest akin to the show The Biggest Loser. The team or individual who loses the most weight, wins.

Do Different Exercises

Doing the same kind of exercise repeatedly in the course of the week can get pretty boring. Instead, do different exercises within the week. You can do yoga on the first day, cardio the second, weights next. Not only is this actually the better way to exercise, but it will liven up your routine and keep things interesting.

Join a Group

Join a fitness club, a gym or a fitness class. Meeting other people with similar goals can help encourage you with your own. It’s also a great thing to make your exercise feel less like a chore and more like a fun activity. Joining a sports group also brings that competitive edge that always keeps one going!

Hire a Trainer

Having a personal trainer is like having a fitness guardian angel, making sure that you meet your goals and abide by the set rules.


Sign up for a race. Preparing for a race can be a great motivation for you to reach your exercise goals. Here’s how to train for a triathlon.

Do Extra

Commit yourself to extra activities other than your exercise routine on your rest days. This is one way to view exercise less as a chore and more as an organic part of your daily activities.

For example, commit yourself to walk your dog for an hour or two twice a week. Or commit to using the stairs instead of the elevator twice a week. There’s less pressure for you to do it, but in the interest of attaining your goal, these small commitments go a long way. Good luck.

How to Make a Workout Schedule

One of the toughest thing about sticking to a workout is finding the time to actually do it. A lot of people end up claiming that they are too busy or have too many things on their plate. Sound like you? Stop making excuses. You can always make time for anything, especially if you’re really committed to it. Here are some steps to make a workout schedule that works out for you.

Plan the Workout

Considering your weekly schedules and activities is the best way to plan your workout schedule. This should give you an idea on how to manage your time, and most importantly, not to allow yourself excuses in missing your workouts.

Post your workout goals somewhere you can see daily. This should motivate you to stick to the plan.
Sit down and review your weekly schedule. Determine how many times in a week you can devote to exercising and how many hours in a particular day you can commit to your workout.

Devote at least 30 minutes in your workout schedule for the exercise itself. Make an allowance for another 30 minutes to get dressed and to recover from the workout.

Be specific on what kind of exercise you will do on a specific day. Having a different exercise routine per day will prevent you from getting bored.

Keep in mind that a combination of cardio exercises and strength exercises is the best way to lose weight and build muscle.

Keep an eye out for workout videos that can give you both cardio and strength exercises in 30 minutes. You can mix up these workouts with your other standard exercises.

Follow your schedule for at least one month, and you’re sure to feel a difference! After the month is over, sit down and plan out the schedule again for the following month.

Keeping Motivated

Write down your accomplishments for the day after working out. Having a list of accomplishments can be greatly gratifying and will keep you motivated in the days to come.

If you missed a day, make sure that you make time in the following days for a “make up session.”
Having an exercising partner is another way to keep motivated. Call each other up and compare notes on your efforts so far. Having a sounding board is a great comfort and will remind you that you’re not alone in your efforts.

Have a monthly check on how much your body has changed within the month. If you haven’t lost a ton of weight, it’s okay. Your body strength and endurance will have definitely improved, not to mention the health benefits you’ve earned.

How to Exercise When Pregnant

The pregnant woman’s body undergoes dramatic changes as she carries a child to term.

While it’s true that you may be in a more delicate condition than in your normal state, pregnancy must not be a deterrent for you to seek a stronger body. In fact, exercising during pregnancy has a lot of benefits, which include returning to your pre-baby weight, keeping healthy and having a lot more energy – things you all need after giving birth!

Things to Keep in Mind

Before undertaking any type of exercise routine, you must first check with your gynecologist. Your doctor will give you a list of options that are best for you and your baby. Your doctor will also advise you to avoid exercises that involve jumping, leaping, sudden movements or those with risk of abdominal injury. You will probably need an exercise instructor and a strict diet if you have a history of:

  • Cardiac or respiratory disease
  • Pre-existing diabetes condition or diabetes developed during pregnancy
  • Have a history of premature labor
  • High blood pressure, either before pregnancy or during pregnancy
  • Placenta previa, or the condition where the baby’s placenta is placed over or near your cervix
  • Physical disabilities or skeletal and muscular impairments
  • You should also use a good sports bra to provide support for your expanding chest area. Proper rubber shoes should also be use to provide support and lessen the impact of the exercise on your feet and legs, which is very important since you are carrying extra weight. Keep hydrated by drinking plenty of water. Exercise during mornings, when it is cooler.

Exercising while pregnant should make you feel refreshed and invigorated, not tired. If you feel discomfort, breathlessness or pain in any way, stop exercising altogether. Check again with your doctor which exercise are most suitable for you.

Pregnancy Exercises

Once you’ve taken the necessary precautions, it’s time to exercise.

Warm-Up. Don’t take your body by surprise by going into heavy exercise suddenly. Do these warm-up exercises for five to ten minutes.

Calf Stretch. Face a solid wall and place your palms flat against it, arms shoulder-width apart. Put one foot a step in front of the other, hip-width apart. The leg behind must be fully extended. Bend your forward leg gradually, counting to ten until you feel the leg behind fully stretched. Hold this pose for ten counts and repeat with the other leg.

Arm Stretch. Stretch one arm completely over your chest, and lock it with your other arm by crossing over it vertically. Hold this pose for ten counts before repeating with the other arm.

Head and Shoulder Rotation. For head rotation, drop your head in front and slowly rotate it backwards and forwards again. Do this clockwise for five counts and counterclockwise for another five. For shoulder rotation, roll your shoulders backward repeatedly for five counts, and forwards for another five. Do not arch your back while doing this exercise.

Aerobic and Strength Exercises. These exercises aim to make you stronger in your pregnant state and increase your stamina. You may do these exercises in 20 to 30 minutes, and even to an hour, depending on what your doctor prescribes.

Brisk Walking. Walk around the block at a brisk pace, or the most comfortable pace your body needs to break out into a light sweat.

Inner Thigh Lifts. Lie down on one side, supporting your head with one arm or a pillow. Bend the leg resting directly on the ground for balance, and then slowly lift the other leg up as far as you can. Hold for five counts before returning to place. Repeat for another ten counts before doing the same with the opposite leg.

Swimming. Swim in the comfort of your own home by standing with your feet hip-width apart, one foot in front of the other by two steps. “Swim” through the water by raising one arm up fully and diving to the opposite side of your body, your body twisting to follow through, like a crawl stroke. Do this for ten counts, shift feet and repeat on the other side.

Wall Push Ups. Find a solid wall where it can support your weight. Put your palms flat against the wall, shoulder-width apart, with bent elbows. From your feet to your palms, angle yourself so that you will be slightly over 90 degrees leaning into the wall from the floor. Slowly push yourself off the wall and return to the original position for ten counts.

Cool Down. Cooling down is necessary to bring your body back to its normal pace. Here are a few exercises you can do:

Plies. Stand straight with your toes pointing out and your heels slightly pointing to each other, feet hip-width apart. Your arms should be held overhead. Slowly bend your knees with your back straight, and stop before your knees get further than your toes. As you bend, your arms should slowly go down, and end in a rounded position, as if you are releasing a fish into water. Slowly come up and as you do, bring your arms overhead like a ballerina. Hold this position and repeat.

Leg Stretch. Support yourself against a solid wall, bend a leg backward and hold the bent leg’s foot for a few counts. Do the same for the other.

Do these exercises every other day. You may also want to enroll in water aerobics or pregnancy yoga, which have specific routines for pregnant women.

How to Exercise While Sitting at Your Computer

With today’s fast-paced lifestyles and bloated schedules, it’s hard to find time to exercise. Fortunately, there are ways we can exercise right from the comfort of our own desk cubicles. Do these exercises daily and you’re sure to feel a difference.

Sit Properly.

The 1st step with any exercise is proper posture. If you can, try to find an ergonomic seat that will both provide support and correct your sitting posture. Your seat’s back chair rest should be angled a little over 90 degrees, but not by too much.

Prevent Carpal Tunnel.

Your wrists should also not be resting flat against the desk, as this causes Carpal Tunnel Syndrome. Your wrists should be angled slightly lower than your elbows. Find wrist support for both your mouse and keyboard. Roll your wrists for twenty counts every hour.

Position Your PC Screen Properly.

Your eyes should be level at the screen and your head mustn’t have to be angled downwards or upwards to look at it properly. Adjust your screen accordingly.

Rotate Your Head.

Roll your head around slowly for five counts in a clockwise direction, and in a counterclockwise direction for another five counts. Do this every other hour, and do it slowly.

Stretch Your Back.

To prevent yourself from having a hunching position as a default, roll back your shoulders and stretch back your arms as far as you can. Roll your wrists and flex your fingers before resuming back into a proper sitting position.

Stretch Your Arms.

Extend one arm fully in front of you, fingers pointing upward. Use your other hand to bend back your fingers slightly, until you feel a stretch. Hold this pose for ten counts before doing the same to your other hand.

Stretch Your Legs.

Back up your chair a little to allow more space for your legs. You can stretch your legs while sitting down by extending them straight outwards with your toes pointing slightly backward. You can support your thigh with your hands. Keep this position for ten counts before doing the same with your other leg.

You can stretch your legs standing up by finding a solid wall, putting your palms flat against it, shoulder-width apart. Put one foot slightly in front of the other, extending the other leg behind. Bend the forward leg until you feel the stretch in the other leg. Hold this position for ten counts before repeating this with the other leg.

Walk Around.

it a point to walk around the office once in a while. Try to keep it at short distances as not to be accused of loitering. Go to the bathroom, or walk around your hallway.

Be Hydrated.

Have a tall glass of water nearby at all times. Drinking water helps flush out toxins in your body and that will keep you healthy. It’ll also give you a good reason to walk to the bathroom plenty of times.

Leg Lifts.

Lift your leg up on the balls of your feet and down again. Repeat until you feel comfortably tired. Repeat all throughout the day.

Clench Those Muscles.

Clench your abdominal muscles in a similar way that you do with sit-ups. Hold those muscles clenched for five counts before releasing, and repeat. You can also do the same for your gluteus muscles.

Full Body Stretch.

Remember the stretch you sometimes do when you’ve just rolled out of bed? Do the same in your cubicle: Stand up and put up your arms to give your whole body a stretch.

Hand Gripper.

Invest in a hand gripper or elastic bands to help you exercise without leaving your seat. You can do these exercises during your lunch break or when you’re waiting for something to finish loading.

You can also do leg lifts and stretches while doing other office work, such as taking calls or running errands. You can also do some quick exercises by taking the stairs instead of the elevator.

Keep in mind, though, that exercises done within the confines of your cubicle will not be an adequate replacement for real exercises that can be done in thirty minutes to an hour. Having a healthy diet and enough rest will also help a lot in your endeavors.

How To Lose Love Handles

Love handles may prove to be handy and lovely when you are hugging someone or making love but they can be anything but cute especially if you’re planning to hit the beach.

These layers of fat that are located on both sides of your body can be a source of insecurity and lack of self-confidence in the presence of other people.

If you are dead tired of feeling ashamed of those nasty mounds of fat, then just follow these tips and bring all that loving feeling back.

Revise Your Diet

Make sure to read food labels when going to the grocery store to avoid certain kinds of fat in the food you eat and cook. Stay away from saturated fats that are found in most animal products like dairy and meat. You should also shy away from trans fatty acids that are present in foods that have “hydrogenated oils” in them.

Go for alternatives. For instance, you can use skim milk instead of regular or whole milk. Go for egg whites rather than egg yolks. When cooking, you should try using more olive oil while lessening the butter and cream in the food that you prepare.

Starchy foods such as rice, potatoes and cereals should be taken in moderation and should be coupled with rigorous exercise or else, you’ll just end up with more body fat if you don’t burn enough calories.

The key here is losing the needed pounds through proper diet. On way to find out if you need to shed off excess weight is to take a BMI test. You can easily do this online to check and see if you are within a healthy range. Losing weight in general can help reduce the size of your love handles.


Many fitness buffs say that you can’t target fat deposits but what you can do is concentrate on building and toning muscles to help your body burn calories more efficiently, even when you’re just watching TV at home. Strength training is the way to go just as long as you target the right areas.

There are many exercises available also such as crunches, shower flexes and jumping jacks, among others. You can all do these in less than half an hour for beginners.

You should also pair some cardiovascular exercises to your muscle building routine to burn more calories. Do this at least three times a week for 30 minutes. Swim, ride a bike and jog and raise your heart rate to pump more blood through your circulatory system.

Don’t be tempted to pig out especially after a strenuous exercise. Eat several small snacks daily and always eat breakfast so you won’t get hungry easily. If you’re hungry, try to drink water so you’ll get full and rehydrate properly. If you happen to live near Guelph, Ontario, check out personal trainer Guelph.

Consider Surgery

If all else fails, you may want to consider undergoing surgery. The good news is that liposuction has now proven to be a safe and quick outpatient procedure. Minimal rest is necessary and you can return to work within a few days. You may want to check all possible treatments first and make sure you go to a reputed clinic to get utmost safety and comfort.

These are just some of the simple exercises and techniques you can employ to get rid of love handles the easiest and fastest way. There are many other possible ways to try and they are all available on the Internet. Start studying your options and say goodbye to your love handles today!

How to Burn Calories Quickly

A calorie is a metric unit of energy now used to refer to energy that we get from food.

Every activity we do, from conscious actions like walking or talking, to unconscious actions like breathing and our hearts beating, are all powered mainly by calories.

So why all the fuss about calories? When we burn less calories than we actually have in our body, the unspent energy gets stored up as fat. For those who want to lose weight, this means that one either has to eat less calories than what their body burns up or exercise more to make sure more calories are burned.

Here are some ways to help you burn calories faster.


Exercise teamed with your daily activities should help you burn your calories faster. Aerobic exercise like brisk walking, jogging, cycling, jump rope boxing and dancing will burn calories faster than you would any other time of the day and its effects would persist even later on.

Cardio exercises like the ones mentioned above, are even better paired with strength and weight training. Muscle exercises also help burn calories faster, more than other body tissues.

Exercise need not be restricted to visits to the gym. Gardening, taking the stairs and doing the chores will all contribute with both cardio exercises and weight training.

Spread Out Your Meals

Instead of eating three big meals in a day, spread out your meals into six smaller-sized portions. Not only will this help with your blood sugar levels, but it will also help your body burn the calories that come with the meals more efficiently.

Improve Your After-Meal Burn

After meal burn is the term used for the calorie burn your body produces right after you eat. The after meal burn can take up at least 200 calories per meal. If improved upon, your after meal burn can even burn more calories.

To encourage a bigger after meal burn, eat more vegetables and lay off the meat and dairy products. Studies have shown that fibrous fruit, vegetables, complex carbohydrates and low-fat meat generate a bigger after meal burn.

Vegetarians in fact have been shown to have a bigger after meal burn than their normal meat-eating counterparts.

Don’t Starve Yourself

Metabolism is a key element in burning calories. A fast metabolism means that your body burns up calories faster. Starving yourself or eating less calories than you should slows down your metabolism and signals to your brain to store up more fat to survive. Eat smartly and moderately, and you’ll be fine.

A combination of exercise, spreading out your meals and improving your after meal burn will give you an edge against those who wish to lose weight. You don’t need to resort to fad diets or eating disorders after this!