Katrina Hodgson, NASM CPT, BS Health Science, has helped thousands reach their goals by designing fitness programs with her workout videos and her website ToneItUp.com. As one of Diet.coms featured personal trainers she hopes to share her passion for fitness and continue to make a positive impact for the Diet.com community.

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Fitness Expert Katrina

by Katrina Hodgson, Diet.com Fitness Expert
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tummy. My favorite core circuit to do at home is below…

Plank 1 minute
- Prone to floor, with forearms below your chest, lift up at the hips while keeping your core tight.

10-16 Bicycle crunches
- Lay on your back and bring your opposite elbow to your opposite knee and alternate.

5-10 V-sits
- Sit with your knees out in front of you bent slightly, lift your feet off the ground and place your hands on the ground right behind your bottom, extend your legs strait, then crunch your knees in toward your body. Repeat.

5-10 Side planks (great for obliques)
"Lay on your side with your bottom foot forward and your top foot just behind, rest on your forearm on the ground and lift your hips up into the air!

5-10 Laying leg lifts
- Lay on your back and put your hands under your bottom. While pressing your lower back into the floor by doing a pelvic tilt, bring your legs up to a 90 degree angle the bring them down about 10 inches off the floor. Repeat.

My favorite exercises to do for my abs in the gym are…

Hanging leg raises
-They look scary, but they are very effective for working mostly the lower abdominal area. It’s important to ask a trainer to help you and give you a spot the first time.

Decline Bench sit-ups
While doing a pelvic tilt, sit on a decline bench and go half way back - sit all the way up while squeezing your abs.

Physioball sit-ups

Physioball side sit-ups

Reverse crunch with physioball between legs

Cable core twist

Many of these exercises you can ask a trainer to help you.

Committing to these three main parts to creating flat abs…
1.Deducting your calories
2.Burning extra calories by doing cardio.
3.Creating a smooth toned tummy by doing abdominal exercises
…Will give you a tight core and the satisfaction in wearing your favorite summer clothes! Good luck, be safe and have fun!


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@ 2:39pm ET on April 11, 2007
I have a class at my gym called core storm. It is awesome, you do all sorts of ab moves combined with cardio to keep your heart rate up inbetween what ever strength training you are doing, mixed in with some balance work (also engages the abdomon) and he even tosses in some arm/leg work. It is the most perfect 70 minutes of my week. You guys should see if your gym has something similar, it is awesome. (Mine is heald at the Las Vegas Athletic Club, Central Location, if any happen to be members there...)

@ 4:14pm ET on April 11, 2007
Is it true that if you do things like normal situps that it will just make your stomach stick out more? I'm a pilates girl now, but in the past I did lots of situps!

@ 9:52am ET on April 12, 2007
Pilates is amazing. It demands a ton of core strength and endurance. Many of the moves in pilates are holding a pose and using muscle endurance. A combination of both is what I like best. Doing sit ups will create muscle and strength, but do not worry about your tummy sticking out more! The 'v-sit' I suggest and the side and front planks are much like the moves we do in pilates. Whatever you can do for you core is good! If you enjoy it- you will do it, so if you are working those muscles then keep up with what you really enjoy and that you will stick with! Have fun ;)

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