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The 30-Day Core Sculpting Challenge

Truth be told, it doesn’t matter whether you are a recreational runner, seasoned athlete, or someone who spends most of their time sitting in an office chair, a strong core is vital for both health and performance.

Your core muscles are the foundation for almost all athletic and non-athletic movements.

And when the core muscles are in trouble—read: too weak—expect all sorts of troubles, including chronic pain, bad posture, back issues, even spinal injury, God forbid.

Therefore, once you get your core strong and powerful, you’ll be adding more support to your body so you can run and perform every athletic activity (and every other life task) much more efficiently and with more ease.

The Core – It’s not what you think

I hate to sound like a broken record, but as I have already said in my previous posts, the core is not just the abs—that’s what people typically think of their abs.

The core is more than that.

The fact is, your core muscles involves all of the muscles in your midsection, including the ones on your sides (the obliques), the erector spinae, abdominal muscles, inner abdominal muscles, glutes and lower lats.

The 30-Day Core Sculpting Challenge

With this 30-day core challenge, you’ll be getting yourself on the path of saying goodbye to your love handles for good, and be able to strengthen and tone your core in under a month.

Of course, this challenge is not a silver bullet. It will not lead to an overnight success. You need time, patience, and healthy eating for that.

So are you excited? Then here we go…

The Exercise program

Each week you’ll be performing four workouts. Each workout is different and varies in length, intensity, and exercises.

For the most part, you’ll be spending one minute on every exercise—unless otherwise stated.  Take at least 20 to 30 seconds of rest between moves and one to two minutes between rounds.

Of course, as you get stronger and fitter, make sure to up the ante by increasing the length time or number of reps you perform on each move.

Just don’t try to do these workouts every single day. Your core, just like the rest of other muscle groups, needs a time-off and recovery in order to restore itself.

Doing too much will only backfire on you. And you don’t want that, do you?

Without further ado, here is the 4-week core challenge:

Week 1

The first week is all about pacing yourself and finding where you are at when it comes to core strength and endurance. This is why most of the exercises prescribed below are simple and straightforward. Most of them are isometric exercises designed to test both your endurance and strength.

Nothing crazy here.

Workout I: The Core Shredder

Do the following;

One minute Plank hold

20 Crunches

15 Russian Twists

10 Leg raises

Repeat three to five times.

Workout II: The Love Handles Eliminator

Do the following:

Side Plank right side for one minute

Side plank left Side for one minute

15 reverse crunches

20 Bicycle crunches

Repeat three to five sprints

Workout III: The Explosive Core

Do the following:

One minute floor sprints

One minute High knees

15 Hanging leg raises

One minute Planks jacks

Repeat three to five times

Workout VI: The Core Blaster

Do the following:

One minute hold planks

15 Spiderman push-ups

One minute of Plank with knee to chest

20 alternating leg raises

15 Plank reaches

Repeat three to five times.

Week 2

Workout I: The Core Shredder

Do the following

90 second of plank holds

30 Crunches

25 Russian Twists with a weight plate.

20 leg raises

Repeat  three to five times

Workout II: The Love Handles Eliminator

Do the following:

30 seconds of  side arm plank crunches (right side)

30 seconds of  side arm plank crunches (left side)

30 reverse crunches

40 bicycle crunches

Repeat three to five times

Workout III: The Explosive Core

Do the following:

Two minutes of floor sprints

Two minutes of high knees

30 Hanging leg raises

90 seconds of plank jacks

Repeat three to five times

Workout VI: The Core Blaster

Do the following:

Two minutes hold planks

20 Spiderman push-ups

90 seconds of Plank with knee to chest

30 alternating leg raises

20 Plank reaches

Repeat three to five times.

Week 3

Workout I: The Core Shredder

Do the following

Two minutes of plank holds

50 Crunches

40 Russian Twists with a weight plate.

30 leg raises

Repeat three to five times

Workout II: The Love Handles Eliminator

Do the following:

90 seconds of  side arm plank with opposite leg raised (right side)

90 seconds of  side arm plank with opposite leg raised (left side)

40 reverse crunches

50 bicycle crunches

Repeat three to five times

Workout III: The Explosive Core

Do the following:

Three minutes of floor sprints

Three minutes of high knees

30 Hanging leg raises

Two minutes of plank jacks

Repeat three to five times

Workout VI: The Core Blaster

Do the following:

Three minutes hold planks

25 Spiderman push-ups

Two minutes seconds of Plank with knee to chest

40 alternating leg raises

25 Plank reaches

Repeat three to five times.

Week 4

As you are coming to week 4, you are coming near the end of this 30-day challenge. So you have to give it your best here. Go for the extra mile, if you have to.

Some of these workouts are quite challenging. This is no longer beginner territory, so pace yourself if it feels like too much of a challenge.

You are the boss. You call the shots.

Workout I: The Core Shredder

Do the following:

Three minutes of plank holds

70 Crunches

50 Russian Twists with a weight plate.

40 leg raises

Repeat three to five times

Workout II: The Love Handles Eliminator

Do the following

90 seconds of  side arm plank crunches (right side)

90 seconds of  side arm plank crunches (left side)

60 reverse crunches

60 bicycle crunches

Repeat three to five times

Workout III: The Explosive Core

Do the following:

Three minutes of floor sprints

One minute of Jumping Squats

Three minutes of high knees

One minute of Burpees

30 Hanging leg raises

Two minutes of plank jacks

Repeat three to five times

Workout VI: The Core Blaster

Do the following:

5 minutes Plank Hold

30 Spiderman Pushups

Two minutes of Plank knee jumps

50 alternating leg raises

30 Plank reaches

Repeat three to five times.

Exercise Demonstrations and Tutorials

In case you are not familiar with the exercises above, here are the form tips you need:

Plank Holds

Crunches

Russian Twists with a weight plate

Leg Raises

Side arm Plank Crunches

Reverse Crunches

Bicycle Crunches

Floor Sprints

Jumping Squats

High Knees

Burpees

Hanging leg raises

Plank Jacks

Spiderman Pushups

Plank knee jumps

Alternating Leg Raises

Plank Reaches

Featured Image Credit  – CCFoodTravel.com Via Flickr

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David Dack

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