Today I watched a man at the gym do crunches for three minutes straight. He was pulling his head forward with his hands, his feet were coming off the ground each time he curled up and his stomach was rolling over his shorts. I wanted to stop him, but I figured I'd write to all of you instead.
The abdominal crunch is not for most people.
As many of you know, if you want lean, toned abs you must FIRST address your diet. Because food intolerance inhibits the abdominal wall from working properly, the presence of inflammatory foods such as dairy, gluten and most grains in your diet renders ab workouts futile. It doesn't matter how great your trainer is or how much of a burn you feel in your abs, if you're eating the SAD (standard American diet) you're going to have to work that much harder to look good AND you'll most likely feel terrible in the process. Bottom line:
If you're eating inflammatory foods, most ab exercises won't help.
Ready for an exercise that tones your abs and helps improve your posture? Try the Stability Ball Ab Push Back. In addition to helping you get a lean midsection, this exercise is fantastic for stability in the scapula and pelvis and mobility in the shoulders. To keep from winging the shoulder blades, be sure to push the ground away from you and imagine a fish hook lifting your chest. It's also very important to maintain a neutral pelvic tilt in this exercises, so watch yourself in the mirror at first to ensure that you aren't arching the low back too much, or rounding through the mid back. And most importantly, have fun!!
*To make this exercise easier, bring the ball closer to your pelvis and start with a very small range of motion.