Sculpt Your Abs

(Without Sit-Ups)

Master these moves to get those coveted abdominal "V lines."

Sculpt Your Abs

(Without Sit-Ups)

Master these moves to get those coveted abdominal "V lines."

Sculpt Your Abs

(Without Sit-Ups)

Master these moves to get those coveted abdominal "V lines."

If you want shredded six-pack abs, experts agree that you need to limit your carbohydrate intake, get plenty of sleep and minimize stress. And while you can't spot reduce fat, you can focus your workouts to target muscle groups that can help sculpt your midsection and help your inner washboard shine through. It's important to remember that there's more to abs than just sit-ups. Training your obliques (located on either side of the abdomen between your hip flexors and your lats), will translate to a slimmer, more defined midsection—not to mention a stronger, more stabilized core. It will also land you those lower abdominal V-line cuts that are so lovingly referred to as "sex lines."

Bird Dog Crunches

1

 

Get down on all fours, with your hands flat on the ground directly beneath your shoulders, and your knees beneath your hips with a flat back.

2

 

Engage your core and drive your right arm straight out from your shoulder, while your left leg drives straight back from your hip, keeping both parallel to the floor.

3

 

Squeeze your arm and leg back to the starting position, but don't set them back on the floor. Repeat this movement for 10 reps, then switch to the left arm/right leg.

Duration

Complete three sets of 10 reps on each side with 30 seconds rest between each set.

Russian Twists

1

 

Grab a medicine ball, dumbbell or weight plate and sit on the floor with your hips and knees bent 90 degrees.

2

 

Holding the weight in front of you, keep your back straight (your torso should be at about 45 degrees to the floor).

3

 

Twist your torso as far as you can to the left, then reverse the motion, twisting as far as you can to the right. That's one repetition.

Duration

Complete three sets of eight to 12 reps with 30 seconds rest between each set.

Single-Leg Side Planks

1

 

Lie on your right side, stacking your knees and feet over one another in a straight line.

2

 

Prop yourself up on your right elbow and engage your right oblique and hip flexor to maintain this rigid position.

3

 

Lift your left leg straight up about six to 12 inches, while keeping your foot flexed directly forward. Hold this position for 15 seconds, keeping your core rigid.

Duration

Complete three sets of eight to 10 plank holds on each side with 30 seconds rest between each set.

FYI

Golf, baseball swings and paddling a kayak all involve use of the external oblique muscles for strength and stability.