Buff Bride: Awesome Abs

Try these four exercises to achieve a stronger core, better balance and good posture for your wedding day.

When it comes to getting in shape for your wedding day, targeting core muscles is most often a number one priority. The importance of a strong core reaches far beyond just physical appearance.

Benefits of a strong core include stronger back muscles, better balance and good posture. Working all muscles of the core pulls the entire stomach and abdominal muscles tighter, resulting in an overall flatter stomach.

There are tons of fad diets, products and exercises that promise to give women a flat stomach, but Kayla Itsine‚Äôs e-book “Bikini Body Guide” and Toneitup.com are two resources that women anywhere can depend on for advice on how to shape up their midsections. Both provide fitness plans to kickstart a healthy lifestyle.

Here are four main exercises that help promote a strong core that can be found in the “Bikini Body Guide” and Toneitup.com.

AwesomeAbs

Plank
Begin by placing palms or elbows and knees on the floor, then straighten legs to be supported by the balls of the feet. The back should be flat, and the body should be in a straight line parallel to the floor. If this is too advanced, the alternative would be keeping the knees bent and touching the floor. This should be held for two minutes then repeated once.

Push-Ups
Start on the balls of the feet and palms of the hands with elbows slightly bent, then lower to the floor as far as possible and return to the original position. Do two sets of 15 reps.

Toe Taps
Begin by lying on the floor on the back with arms above the head and legs extended straight into the air. Bring the hands up to touch the toes, using your abdominal muscles to pull the rest of the body up. Finish the move by lying back down with arms back on the floor above the head. Remember to squeeze the abs the entire time on the way up.

Ab Bicyles
Lie flat on the back with shoulder blades off the ground and hands holding lightly behind the head. Knees should be bent. Bring the right knee to meet the chest while the left leg is extended straight out. Alternate sides adding an upper body twist to each corresponding side.

Flat-Belly Foods

Most people assume that exercise is the number one key to a flat belly and healthy lifestyle. While that is definitely a component of getting in shape, nutrition is also an important factor to remember. When trying to achieve a strong core and flat belly, reach for these four fantastic foods:

Grapefruit: Grapefruit breaks down fatty acids in the body and boosts metabolism to help the body absorb nutrients and digest food quicker. It also aids in digestion, which decreases bloating in the stomach, promotes lean muscle growth and helps curb the appetite.

Pineapple: Pineapple reduces belly fat, which helps the abdominal muscles show through and appear more defined.

Blueberries: These berries contain catechins, which target fat-burning genes in the body but specifically in the abdominal fat cells.

Yogurt: The probiotics contained in yogurt help speed digestion, which gets rid of bloating to create a flatter looking tummy. Reach for plain Greek yogurt, which has no sugar added.

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