Core Challenge

Pretty San Diego sunset to distract you from the core burn

Pretty San Diego sunset to distract you from the core burn

This is your monthly core challenge… For the next 4 weeks, do these exercises 3 days a week alternating with days off in between. Core strength is vital excellence in any sport and it increases the amount of fat you burn overall!

Fun Fact! Did you know that you abdominal muscles could support up to 40% of the weight of the spine! Strong abs can improve posture and decrease the strain put on the lower back. This means fewer back aches for you.

The different exercises below target different abdominal muscles to give you the best overall strength and best overall workout.


Upper Abdominals

Curl-Up ————— 3 sets of 12 reps


The Curl-Up is a normal abdominal crunch, but your arms are by your sides at your hips verses crossed over your chest or behind your head. Each crunch you are reaching with your hands to try to touch your feet. The full description is below!

  • lie on back with feet flat on floor & knees bent (approximately 60 degrees)
  • Place arms next to hips, palms down, head neutral
  • Curl torso up, moving hands towards feet, shoulders lift off floor
  • Feel abs contract, hold for a county of 1
  • return slowly to starting position

Lower Abdominals

Pelvic Tilt ————— 3 sets of 15 reps


The pelvic tilt is a lower abdominal exercise. The movement is small. Click on the video link above if you need more assistance doing the exercise, but do not worry about the Pilates info being provided.

  • Lie on back with feet flat on floor & knees bent (60 degrees)
  • Place arms out to the sides to stabilize you
  • Slowly flatten out lower back, pressing small of back into the floor
  • Roll your hips towards your chest
  • Hold 5 seconds!
  • Return to starting position and repeat


Seated Twist ————— 3 sets of 12 reps
  • Sit on the floor with legs extended and spread in front of you (in a straddle position)
  • Place each hand on the same-side shoulder (right hand on right shoulder etc.)
  • Twist from side to side using slow movements
  • Twist at the hips not at the legs

Here is my challenge to you all… do the core challenge 3 x a week for 1 month (until the next core challenge is posted). Take a picture before you start of your abs, whatever state they are, and take a picture after so you can track your progress. Measure your waist around the point of your belly button and measure again in 1 month.

Core is a work in progress for all...

Core is a work in progress for all…

My name is Emma Petshow and I am a 3rd year naturopathic medical student at the National College of Natural Medicine in Portland, OR. For more about myself, check out my bio. This blog is intended for information about preventive health and lifestyle improvement. The information contained on this blog is not to be used as medical advice. For specific medical advice you should consult your physician.

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