How to Trim Belly Flab with the Lower Abs Lift

3 of 6 in Series: The Essentials of Day 5 of Your Ten-Minute Tone-Up

Both men and women struggle continuously, for obvious aesthetic reasons, to lose their flab, accusingly called a gut or beer belly. You can bust that beer belly in a minimum amount of time if you eat a balanced diet, do aerobic activities, and use exercise those lower abs.

The Lower Abs Lift strengthens and flattens your lower stomach muscles:

  1. Lie on your back with your legs raised and knees bent at a 90-degree angle.

    The Lower Abs Lift targets the lower abs.
    The Lower Abs Lift targets the lower abs.

    You're in correct form if your knees are pointing up to the ceiling and your shins are parallel to the floor. Rest your arms down by your sides.

    Don't arch your back. Keep it in neutral alignment, meaning your spine is elongated from top to bottom, allowing for its natural curve. Keep the chin raised as if you're holding an orange under it.

  2. Lift your pelvis toward your rib cage by contracting the abdominals. At the same time, raise your tailbone off the floor to move your knees in the direction of your chin. Pause as you squeeze and hold your abdominals in for a moment. Slowly return to start.

    Do five to ten repetitions. As you progress, work up to 10 to 20 repetitions.
    Do five to ten repetitions. As you progress, work up to 10 to 20 repetitions.

To get the most benefit out of this Lower Abs Lift move, be sure to use your abdominal muscles rather than your butt muscles to lift the pelvis. This takes sharp mind over body concentration.

Doing lower abs movements is not enough to lose your pouch. You still must lose the excess fat in order to show off your toned muscles, which means coupling these exercises with a healthy diet and aerobic activities.

  • Breathe properly: Exhale at the point of exertion or, simply put, during the most difficult part of the exercise.

  • Avoid momentum: Because many lower abs exercises involve raising the lower part of your stomach, it's all too easy to use momentum to complete the movement. Swinging your lower abs or legs up and down uncontrollably works with gravity but, unfortunately, does nothing to tone that belly.

    Your strength should come from your core (abs and lower back), not the earth’s gravitational field.

  • Tighten those abs: Remember to contract or squeeze your lower abs to get the most out of the exercises.

  • Stop the slop: If you find that your form starts to get sloppy — stop! It’s better to do fewer repetitions with correct form than to do tons of lower abs exercises with poor technique.

  • Make a mental and physical plan: Use the power of mind over body to capitalize on your lower abs workout.

  • Hold the contraction: Holding the contraction of a lower abs move is a powerful action. It completes the lifting part of the movement and makes it more effective.

Try these modifications:

  • Place your feet on the ground: You can simplify the move by placing your feet flat on the ground hip-width apart with your knees pointing up toward the ceiling. Use your lower abdominals to tilt your pelvis slightly up.

  • Use a stability ball: For more of a challenge, try it with a stability ball. Lie on your back on the ball so that your hips are lower than your shoulders. Raise your arms up over your head to hold onto a weighted object such as a chair for balance. Curl your legs up toward your chest. Don't hyperextend your back.

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