Females can work out and get six packs.
We have all seen her -- she has the bulleted six-pack abs that make everyone in the room stop and do a double take, wondering how all that muscle definition and lack of fat came about. Working out your abs, or core, involves almost 30 muscles in the hip, abdomen, pelvis and lower back area. There are outer, middle and inner layers of muscles, each with its own function. These muscles are involved in bending, squatting, sitting, standing, tucking, twisting and stabilizing the spine. A workout that incorporates all of these moves will develop your abdominal muscles the most, like her.
Tucks and Seals
Lie on your back, stretch your arms overhead and your legs downward and lifted off the ground. Lift your head and bring both knees up to your chest, hugging them before extending them out again. Repeat 10 times. Next, alternate hugging one knee at a time, 10 times each. Then, add rolling to your tuck by doing 10 seals. To do a seal, sit on the floor with the bottoms of your feet touching. Thread your hands under your knees and grab the outside of your ankles. Clap your feet together three times, then roll onto your back and when your feet are up in the air, clap them together three times before rolling back to sitting.
Toes to Bar
Working against gravity forces you to work harder and brings the best results. Toes to bar, or T2B, are done hanging from a bar. Bring your legs forward, bend at the waist and draw both feet upward to touch the bar together. Then return your legs down, with your arms and hips extended. At the end of the move, your legs must pass behind the bar before attempting the next one. This can be modified into "elbows to knees," where you hang from the bar and draw your knees up toward your elbows. Your workout goal is to do eight reps. You can rest between them if needed.
Movement of the entire trunk works the external layer of abdominals, the rectus abdominis, internal and external obliques and the iliopsoas. The candlestick engages these muscles. Start by lying on your back. Roll your knees up toward your chest, and then use the backward momentum to point your feet to the ceiling, balancing on the back of your shoulders. You can push your arms back on the floor to assist with support, or place them by your head. Return your legs to the floor by tucking them to chest and then straightening them out again. Repeat this 10 times.
The pike position is used in diving and gymnastics and is a great way to challenge your abs. Start by lying on your back. With legs straight, point your toes toward the ceiling, and hold them there while you bring your shoulders off the ground. Reach for your toes with your hands 10 times in a row. Next, leave the right leg in the air and climb up it with your hands until you get as close to your feet as you can. Come back down and repeat with your left leg. Do both legs 10 times, using hands only when necessary.
To really sculpt your abs, you will need to do some twisting. The mason twist is great for this. Begin by sitting on ground with a 1- to 8-pound dumbbell between both hands. Lift your feet off the floor. The back of your left hand should touch the ground on the left side close to your fanny. Then twist so the back of your right hand touches the ground on the right side, keeping your head forward and elbows back. This is one repetition. Try to perform three sets of 20 reps, resting between for 10 seconds with your feet still off the ground.