Rebuilding core strength

by - Tuesday, November 17, 2009

As part of Angela's Whittle My Middle challenge, I did between 10 and 15 minutes of core work after my run last night and I was sad to see I had fallen so far in the core strength department.

Back when I was in college, I was a fitness instructor and one of my favorite classes to teach was our half hour Abs and Low Back class. In the class I would take participants through series of crunches, back extensions and planks galore. I didn't have a six pack, but I had great core strength.

Since I graduated and stopped teaching the class, I've let my core strength slip. Teaching yoga last spring definitely helped bring some of it back, but I don't think I've done a lick of core work since July.

And that was pretty evident last night.

I was taking myself through a plank series I used to do in my class -- three planks held for a minute each with 10 seconds rest in between. Intense, but back in college I could do it, no problem. (My participants were probably cursing my name by the time they left class though.) Last night I had to modify, I did three planks for 30 seconds with 10 seconds rest between.

So now I have a new goal. By the end of the challenge, I want to be able to do my three planks for one minute with 10 seconds rest between.

To clarify the series goes like this:
Three regular planks
Three side planks
Three other side planks
It's nine minutes of planks when I do the whole thing.

Feel free to steal my plank series if you're looking for something to mix up your core work.

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  1. Know what I hear really gives you ripped abs?

    Playing cornhole.

    I think you know what I'm talkin' 'bout, sister.

    O, yay-yuh!

  2. nice job on the core workout!! gah its one of those things i have the hardest time doing, but really need to do!

  3. I have TERRIBLE core strength and I actually kind of hate working my core. It's not fun.

    I need to do it though so I just may steal your plank series :) 9 minutes of planks has got to equal a strong core!!

  4. Working on core strength is on my goals list for next year, after these marys are over for this year. Thanks for the plank exercise series!!!

    How awesome that you used to teach all those fitness classes! I love classes like that!!

  5. yea core strength is ultra important from the tri side too. it's a big balance and stabilizer deal. i need to do more core work than i do now. good job!

  6. Ah, I need these core/plank exercises. Thank you for sharing!

  7. eeeiik I'm trying to get better with all my middle work...but seriously I'm just not dedicated, what the heck!

  8. THREE?!? i do like, one of each... for maybe 30 secs (when i actually do them 2-3 times per year it seems). and yet i wonder why i'm so flabulous? ;) guess i need to kick my butt more - i'm nowhere near hardcore!