Diana Mitrea, NYC-based trainer and co-founder of Stronger With Time, created a quick 10-minute abs workout that works all of your core muscles without including a single plank.
“Doing a core-strengthening routine consistently is beneficial because every functional movement starts with core strength—something as simple as squatting or running will benefit from a stronger core. It will help you feel faster and powerful during your all of your other workouts,” she adds.
She ditched the planks because while the move is great at strengthening the front, back, and sides of your core, if you hate ‘em, chances are you’ll hate the majority of abs-focused workouts. And remember, results come from consistency! This 10-minute abs routine is a way to work your core without having to suffer through planks—now let’s get to work.
Here’s How To Do This Workout:
Warm-Up: Start by doing high knees for 30 seconds.
Part 1: Cardio Abs Do each move for 20 seconds, resting for 10 seconds after each one. “Focus on moving fast. You want to get your heart rate up quickly during the 20 seconds of work,” explains Mitrea.
- Roll Up
- Pilates Scissors
- Repeat 3x
Then take a quick breather (about 30 seconds).
Part 2: Strength Abs Do each move for 45 seconds, resting for 15 seconds after each one.
- Bird Dog Crunch (using just your right arm)
- Boat Pose (try to hold the pose for the entire 45 seconds!)
- Bird Dog Crunch (using just your left arm)
- Repeat 2x
Equipment Needed: Yoga mat
- Lie faceup on mat with your arms resting on floor above your head.
- Float your arms up so wrists are directly over shoulders, and begin to curl your spine up and off the floor.
- Fold over your legs, forming a “U” shape with body. Reverse movement to lower back to mat.
- Start on your back with your legs straight and arms reaching overhead.
- Extend the right leg toward the sky as you curl up off the shoulder blades and reach for the calf or thigh, grabbing behind your leg gently with both hands. Hover your left leg above the ground.
- Keeping your torso lifted, switch legs, so your right leg is hovering over the ground and your left leg is pointing upwards.
Bird Dog Crunch
- Start on your hands and knees in tabletop position with your wrists above your shoulders and your knees below your hips.
- Extend your right arm forward and left leg back, maintaining a flat back and square hips. This is your starting position.
- Draw your right elbow and left knee to meet under your torso. Then extend back out to your starting position.
- Sit with your knees bent, feet flat on the floor. Grasp your legs under your thighs, slightly above your knees.
- Lean back slightly. Lift your feet off the floor so that your shins are parallel to the floor.
- Extend your arms straight out in front of your at shoulder height.
- Keep your knees bent, or straighten and raise your legs out on a 45-degree angle so that your body forms a V shape (as shown).
And it’s worth noting that you shouldn’t ghost on planks entirely. (If you want to get better at planks, you’ll need to actually do planks, too.) Start with a 10-second hold and gradually add on another five or 10 seconds when you’re ready.
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