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    abd fat
    suzxray posted:
    I have been exercising regularly 5-6 days a week. I alternate btwn cardio and strength training (i.e. cardio day 1, strength day 2, cardio, strength.....). I am having a hard time reducing the abdominal jiggle. Any suggestions on how to improve my ab workout? I have a 53 min Hard Core DVD from Xtrain fit program that I use as my main ab work. I also will do Zumba and have several other DVDs that focus on abs. I have cut calorie intake also. Any suggestions?
    Rich Weil, MEd, CDE responded:
    You're doing lots of cardio, but you could increase it to 5-6 days a week and see if that makes a difference. It burns more calories and fat than resistance exercise, but keep up the resistance exercise to shape your physique. You'll need to do cardio on the same day as resistance exercise if you increase your cardio. I suggest the cardio first. If the ab DVD's you're doing don't include true cardio where you get your heart rate elevated, than you need to add that to your workouts so you get at least 4 days a week.

    You can't spot reduce, but here are some excellent ab exercises. Make sure to stretch your low back before and after doing them.

    1. Bicycle Maneuver: Lie flat on the floor with your lower back pressed to the ground. Put your hands beside your head. Bring knees up to about 45-degree angle and slowly go through a bicycle pedal motion. Touch your left elbow to your right knee, then your right elbow to your left knee. Keep even, relaxed breathing throughout.

    2. Captain's Chair: Stabilize your upper body by gripping the hand holds and lightly pressing your lower back against the back pad. The starting position begins with you holding your body up with legs dangling below. Now slowly lift your knees in toward your chest. The motion should be controlled and deliberate as you bring the knees up and return them back to the starting position.

    3. Crunch on Exercise Ball: Sit on the ball with your feet flat on the floor. Let the ball roll back slowly. Now lie back on the ball until your thighs and torso are parallel with the floor. Cross your arms over your chest and slightly tuck your chin in toward your chest. Contract your abdominals raising your torso to no more than 45 degrees. For better balance, spread your feet wider apart. To challenge the obliques, make the exercise less stable by moving your feet closer together. Exhale as you contract; inhale as you return to the starting position.

    4. Vertical Leg Crunch: Lie flat on the floor with your lower back pressed to the ground. Put your hands behind your head for support. Extend your legs straight up in the air, crossed at the ankles with a slight bend in the knee. Contract your abdominal muscles by lifting your torso toward your knees. Make sure to keep your chin off your chest with each contraction. Exhale as you contract upward; inhale as you return to the starting position.

    5. Reverse Crunch: Lie flat on the floor with your lower back pressed to the ground. Put your hands beside your head or extend them out flat to your sides-whatever feels most comfortable. Crossing your feet at the ankles, lift your feet off the ground to the point where your knees create a 90-degree angle. Once in this position, press your lower back on the floor as you contract your abdominal muscles. Your hips will slightly rotate and your legs will reach toward the ceiling with each contraction. Exhale as you contract; inhale as you return to the starting position.

    6. The ab exercise that almost all ab exercises are judged against is the simple crunch. The form is on your back, legs in air, knees and hips both at 90 degrees, arms in the air slightly pointed up and backward behind the head, and then contracting the abs while crunching up.
    suzxray replied to Rich Weil, MEd, CDE's response:
    Thank you. I will try your suggestions. Due to my work schedule, it may be hard to do abs and cardio in the same day. Will give it the old try though.
    Rich Weil, MEd, CDE replied to suzxray's response:
    You're welcome. Even 5 minutes a day of abs will help. Good luck, Rich

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