It’s funny how things change when you have a baby around. Blogging for example. I used to write and post first thing in the morning after my workout, and before heading off to work. It was my routine. Now, I randomly find times during the day (or sometimes not at all) during Hunter’s naps when I’m not cleaning, cooking, exercising, running errands, teaching, or on the rare occasion, taking a nap myself.

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It sure is funny how things change. Prioritizing is key now, and exercise is definitely one that is high up on the list of importance for me. It’s going to help me meet my post baby body goals, and it just makes me feel so good.

While I was pregnant I didn’t exercise at the same intensity as before. I was pregnant after all! I still did most of the same workouts and exercises, only modifying as I needed when I got into my third trimester. I thought I was keeping my abs nice n strong, but boy was I wrong!

I’m sure the exercise I did helped me maintain some strength, but now that I’m back to all my regular workouts again at an ever increasing intensity, I can definitely tell I loss not just some, but a lot of core strength during those 9 months.

But I’m going to get it back! These 3 workouts last week left my abs screaming anytime I laughed, coughed, stretched… basically anytime I used them. And only one of the workouts focused directly on my abs.

3 core strengthening workouts

running

I forget how much running engages your entire core, but wow, after each time I’ve gone running (which is 3 times now), my abs are so sore. It makes sense though, you have to, whether you think about it or not, hold your abs in the entire time! Keeping your body upright uses those muscles.

cycling

It’s been a while now since I’ve been on a bike outside, but I am back on the spin bike teaching! Any time you hinge forward, stand up or have to push through heavy resistance, those abs get used again.

ab exercises + strength workouts

Of course there are specific exercises for your abs. I’ve been practicing the choreography for the latest body pump release at home as my strength workout, and with just 4 different moves, my abs are on fire: crunches, bicycle crunches, planks and mountain climbers.

Plus keeping your core engaged while you lift is super important. Not only does it help strengthen them, you’ll maintain proper form throughout the exercise which will help keep you safe. During a squat you have to brace you core. If that didn’t happen the lower back and whole squat would suffer.

And with that I’m off to teach cycle this morning then body pump later tonight. Double core whammy!

How do you like to strengthen your core?

Heather

0 thoughts on “3 ways to strengthen your core

  1. I love working my abs. Among the things you mentioned I also like pilates, kickboxing and I have some good ab dvds (Jackie Warner and Cathe Friedrich).

  2. I like doing ab exercises *with* my baby! I’ll put her on the floor (she’s getting too old for this one now), & get into plank position. I’ll do pushups with her below me & give her a kiss with each rep. She thinks it’s hilarious!

  3. He is just too cute! I am sure you will get that body back in no time! You were already so little when right before you had him! So fun to watch you in this journey though! Trying to take notes and any tips I can for in the far future we want to start our family! 😉

  4. Does your gym offer the Les Mills Cxworx? Its a 30 min core strengthening class. Its awesome! I sweat so much during it.

  5. Your son is adorable- I love his outfit! It looks so soft and comfy- why can’t we get away with wearing stuff like that all day long? :) I like push ups- especially since I had Lula, I really feel my core when I do them.

  6. I like doing a combination of running intervals and doing core specific exercises like the plank to strength my abs! :) Also, while lift heavy weight I always make sure to engage my core!

  7. Heather,
    I have been following you for pry over a year now. I just LOVE your posts!!!! I love your positive attitude!!! I love how you take a healthy lifestyle and make it possible…you still allow yourself to be a normal human being (with the sweet tooth) :) I am also a fellow mom trying to feed myself and my kids healthy and work out :) I just got a new at home program that I LOVE but am looking forward to being able to try some of the ones you have posted!!! Thanks so much for sharing your life with us!!! I love it!!!
    Jessica

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