Intense core workout with 2 supersets and 4 exercises! You will develop abs, obliques and hip flexors.
When it comes to developing a great six pack, proper training is extremely important but so is having a good lifestyle (not just diet).
Lifestyle factors such as sleep, getting enough vitamin D (sun), inflammation and dealing with stress make a huge difference, but diet is probably the biggest one.
If you need help with your diet (and also learn how to fully train the core), check out Abs 20XX guide for all the guidelines, recipes and nutrition plans.
Training is the second big component that you need to develop a strong, aesthetic and defined core.
You sometimes hear many myths like "everyone has abs, just lose body fat" or "big compound exercises are enough for abs", but this is not the case.
It's true that everyone has abs beneath the layers of fat, but not everyone has good and big abs. Abs are similar to your biceps: they grow when you work on them.
It's also true that compound exercises and movement training are GREAT for developing the abs, but for full development you also need to train the core with many isolation exercises.
The reality is that the core is incredibly complex and requires a wide repertoire of different exercises to target all different parts of the core.
Here is an intense core workout to develop abs, obliques and hip flexors (tightly connected to abs training). If superset 2 is too difficult for you, then just do the super set 1 for 3-5 rounds.
Dynamic Core Workout
SUPERSET ONE for 2 rounds
Mountain climber: 4 x 8 repetitions
Explosive push up to side plank: transition
Side plank bend: 4 x 8 repetitions
SUPERSET TWO for 3 rounds
V-sit flutter kicks: 2 x 10 repetitions
V-sit up: 2 x 8 repetitions
Rest 1-2 minutes between rounds and supersets.
Mountain climber is both a great cardio exercise but also an outstanding exercise to train the abs and hip flexors.
Mountain climber is one of the best exercises to develop core stability because you are in the push up plank position and there is plenty of distraction coming from your legs.
In this video we are focusing on rapid and fast mountain climbers (but without sacrificing any control), but it's also possible to do more controlled and slow mountain climbers.
Both variations are great and will stimulate the muscles differently. See this video for the most epic mountain climber compilation.
Side Plank Bend
Side plank bend is a killer obliques exercise designed to target the lower obliques.
The most important thing is to focus on bending from the obliques (as seen in the video) and allow your obliques to do majority of the work.
Almost everyone has poorly developed obliques because their selection of exercises is narrow and basic. Core is far more complex than people think and requires a great deal of training to fully develop the musculature.
For the best obliques exercises and progressions, see Abs 20XX guide. You will target all parts of the obliques and develop the most functional and powerful core.
V-Sit Flutter Kicks
V-sit flutter kicks exercise is great for developing the abs (core stability) but you will also heavily train the hip flexors.
In the beginning it's normal to feel your hip flexors cramp and you don't need to do V-sit flutter kicks with completely straightened legs. It's even OK to just do knee raises.
Use your arms for balance. Focus on slow and controlled leg raises where you really feel the hip flexors and core muscles contract.
V-sit up is an advanced sit up variation that will annihilate your abdominal muscles.
When the regular sit up will nicely work both abs and hip flexors, V-sit up will mostly focus on the abs because your legs aren't anchored anywhere and as a result it's hard to use the hip flexors to raise yourself up.
The slower you can do the V-sit up, the better you will activate the abs. In the beginning you may have less control and need to work real hard to just get up.
For more sit up variations (advanced, hip flexor sit ups, abs sit ups), check out our advanced sit ups video and article here.