Flat Belly Hacks
If you think that Gwyneth Paltrow has materialised these abs miraculously, think again? Her taut mid-rift stands the test of time thanks to a low sugar, high fibre 5-small meal a day diet
Compliance in the Time of COVID 19 can be challenging as routines fly out of the window and cabin fever can set in. Alternatively, some alone time can foster a new plan of action with daily exercise being top on the list. The best work out for a lean, strong belly is Pilates. Invented by gymnast Joseph H. Pilates 100 years ago, Pilates consists of a series of exercises that place intense concentration on the abdominal muscles. Besides shaping a beautiful belly, it also strengthens and stretches the entire body, creating toned muscles similar to a dancer. Loved by Gwyneth not as a standalone exercise, but in conjunction with endurance and cardio exercise, WELLNESSworld shows the three simple Pilates exercises that she does from the comfort of her mansion and that we, lesser mortals, can do from the comfort of our own home.
The Bridge: Works the lower back, butt and hamstrings
Lie on your back with your knees bent and feel flat on the floor, hip-width apart. Rest your arms at your sides, palms down. Take a deep breath. Exhale as you contract your abs and slowly curl your hips off your torso. Support your upper body on your shoulder blades (no your neck) and use your hands only for balance.
While in the bridge, lift your right foot off the floor. Stretch through your toes to keep your in a body straight line. Repeat with your left raised. Do the sequence one more time.
Double leg stretch: Works your abdominals
Lie on your back with your knees pulled in towards the chest. Rest your hands just below your knees, and exhale as you use your abs to raise your stomach off the floor. Inhale.
Exhale and stretch your body long, pressing your arms overhead and your legs straight in front of you in the air. Ensure you move from your abs and extend through the fingertips and toes. Hold for a second. Inhale as you bring your knees back in and sweep your arms towards your knees. Then extend again. Repeat five to eight times.
Teaser: Works your abdominals
Lie on your back with your arms extended overhead, your right knee bent, and your left straight up. Exhale as you use your abs to curl your upper body off the floor and reach towards your left foot. Pull in your abs and keep your back lengthened.
While sitting with your knees bent, lean back. Balance so your feet are slightly airborne. Exhale as you extend your legs with toes pointed. Hold your legs for support.