The midriff is back.
Crop tops are shaping up to be one of this summer’s biggest fashion trends, with Rihanna, Emma Stone and Demi Lovato just some of the celebs recently rocking the look. But unlike more flattering summer fashions, like maxi skirts, this revealing style can be tough to pull off.
To help get your tummy into top form, David Barton Gym trainer Kate Grande recommended these five exercises three to four times a week, so you can sport a short top with a flat stomach this summer.
Of course, it’s also important to be mindful of what you eat. Grande recommended sticking to lean meats and veggies while limiting breads and sweets.
“No matter how strong those abs are, if they’re hiding under fat, no one will know,” she said.
This simple, effective, static exercise can be done with your arms straight or bent with your elbows on the ground. “Start with 20 seconds and work your way up to a minute,” says Grande.
Double leg stretch
Lying on your back, bend your knees into your chest and wrap your arms around your legs without touching them. Simultaneously stretch your arms and legs out at a 45-degree angle. Exhale and place your arms and legs back to the starting position. Do three sets of 20 (10 each leg) with 30-second rest between each set.
“Pull-ups are amazing for ripping up that core,” Grande said, “and your back and arms will thank you as well.” One is tough enough, so aim for as many as possible.
While lying on your back with your legs straight and at a 90-degree angle, raise them toward the ceiling, then lower to the ground in a very controlled manner. “These are a great way to work your entire core,” Grande said. Do three sets of 12 to 15 leg raises, with a 30-second rest between each set.
Target those obliques by doing five crunches at a slow pace, followed by five crunches at a fast pace, all while maintaining good form. Do 30 uninterrupted reps, rest, then repeat two more times for 90 total crunches.