Workouts Tips

You’re Making a Mistake If You Don’t Do These Ab Exercises Before a Workout — Here’s Why

I know it may sound a little weird to work your abs before you do the rest of your workout, but hear me out. I’m not saying you should never do abs during or after a workout, I actually recommend it! But, before you get started with your sprint intervals, strength training, or whatever it is you love to do, you’ve got to warm up your muscles.

Before starting your workout, activate your core. Why? Because your abs play an important role in how your body moves. Your abdominal muscles aren’t just for looks. They support and stabilize your spine, are used every time you breathe, help with bowel movements, and allow you to perform functions like walking, picking objects up, and twisting.

The muscles that make up your core are the internal and external obliques, rectus abdominis, transverse abdominis, erector spinae, and the multifidus. If you don’t get those muscles ready for the load you place on your body, chances are you’ll increase your risk of getting injured. For example, if you don’t activate your core and glutes before you perform squats, your spine will more than likely take on the load, which may lead to a lower back injury. Not to mention the muscles that should be firing aren’t.

To strengthen your abs and prevent getting injured, I recommend taking five to 10 minutes to get your ab muscles firing and ready to work. Ahead, you’ll find a few of my favourite core-activating exercises. They aren’t the most intense moves, but they will improve your stability and core strength, which is more important than how hard or how cool they look.

Select three to five exercises, and complete them before you start your workout. Check them out ahead.

This exercise can also be done with a resistance band.


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Elbow Plank

Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography

  • Start face down on the floor resting on your forearms and knees.
  • Push off the floor, raising up off your knees onto your toes and resting mainly on your elbows.
  • Contract your abdominals to keep yourself up and prevent your booty from sticking up.
  • Keep your back flat — don’t let it droop or you’ll be defeating the purpose. Picture your body as a long straight board, or plank.
  • Hold for 15 seconds.
  • Repeat two times.

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