Exercises to Flatten the Stomach Fast

Obtaining a flat stomach is a little more involved than doing a single exercise hundreds of times on a daily basis. This is the premise of all the ab gadgets seen on late-night infomercials. It is true that you have to work your abdominals, but you also have to burn the flab that covers them up. The fastest way to do this is with high-intensity cardio training and multi-angled ab exercises.

Interval Training

If you want fast results with weight loss, you have to work hard and perform calorie-burning cardio exercise. Interval training is a specific type of cardio where you alternate your intensity from low to high for a certain amount of time. Start your session with a light five-minute warm-up, increase your intensity for 20 seconds, lower it for 40 seconds, then repeat for a total 30 minutes. This is only an example of your time splits; use any interval duration as long as your lower intensity bouts are twice as long as your high intensity. Aim for three interval sessions a week and do any form cardio, such as running, spinning, walking, arc training, inline skating, rowing or rebounding.

Weight Training

Weight training is an often-overlooked facet of flat stomach development, but is valuable when time is of the essence. When you lift weights, you build muscle and your metabolism increases, causing you to burn more calories when your body is at rest. Perform compound exercises that recruit a high proportion of muscle fibers and also cause you to tighten your abs for stability. Bench presses, pull-ups, deadlifts, shoulder presses and lunges are examples. Perform 10 to 12 reps and three to four sets of each exercise.

Single Leg Pikes

Single leg pikes work your lower abdominal area and they are performed with a stability ball. Place your toes together on the ball with your hands shoulder-width apart on the floor, hips lifted and back straight. After raising your right leg in the air, roll the ball toward your head by contracting your abs. When doing this, your body should form an inverted angle and your head should be between your arms. Roll the ball back out and repeat with your right foot. Alternate each leg for a set of 15 to 20 repetitions. Keep your legs and arms straight throughout.

Resisted Bicycle Kicks

Resisted bicycle kicks work your whole stomach and they are done with ankle weights attached to your lower legs. Lie on your back with your shoulders and legs elevated, knees bent 90 degrees and shins parallel to the ground. With your hands on the sides of your head, move your left elbow and right knee toward each other as you extend your left leg and twist your torso. Quickly reverse the direction to work your other side and continue to move in a steady motion for 15 to 20 repetitions.

Single-Leg Cable Rotation

A single-leg cable rotation works your obliques with the aid of a single handle and one side of a cable machine. Attach the handle to a shoulder-high setting, stand with your right shoulder facing the weight stack and hold the handle in both hands with your arms fully extended. After lifting your right foot, rotate your torso to your left side, moving your arms in that direction as far as possible. Slowly rotate all the way to your right side and repeat. After doing 15 to 20 reps, switch sides.

Cable Crunches

Cable crunches work your upper abs and they are done with one side of a cable machine. Attach a rope to a high setting, grasp one end of the rope with each hand on kneel on the floor in front of the weight stack. While holding your hands on the sides of your head, move your torso downward in a curling motion. Forcefully squeeze your abs, lift yourself back up and repeat for 15 to 20 repetitions.

About this Author

Kevin Rail has worked in the fitness industry since 2001 and has been writing since 2004. He has professional experience as a certified personal trainer, wellness coach, motivational engineer and freelance fitness writer. He currently writes a monthly column for Ron Jones High-Performance Health. Rail has a bachelor\’s degree in sports management: fitness and wellness from California University of Pennsylvania.