It’s just about that time of year again when the birds start chirping, the sun beats stronger and the bikini and tank tops in your closet start to rustle for some fresh air. We all love the dawn of summer, but let’s be honest: Months of sweaters, turtlenecks and gym membership cards that weren’t used as often as they should have been makes us all a little timid about baring our midriff.
Getting a flatter stomach by summer does not have to involve fear, thousands of crunches and lunches after lunches of un-dressed salads topped with a plain chicken breast. Instead, focus on these next three months of spring to start or ramp up your yoga practice for a lean and bikini-ready middle by summer.
If you don’t already have access to a yoga class either through a yoga studio or your gym, poke around your town for a great discount on classes. If the class experience isn’t your thing, spend some looking at DietsInReview.com library of yoga DVDs. Bryan Kests’ Power Yoga Complete Collection is a challenging but comprehensive start.
Doing the right moves
One of the many benefits of doing yoga is that thanks to the intense breath work and full-body moves, you are working the many muscles of your stomach in nearly every posture or asana you perform. But there are a few hallmark yoga postures that put a strong spotlight on the core. Postures like Navasana or boat pose and plank pose are super stars for toning the stomach muscles. The key with these postures is to hold them and to keep extending through the crown of your head and tips of your toes as you do them. This action will consequently cause you to engage your core.
Putting it all together
It’s one thing to do the right yoga moves for a flatter stomach and it’s another to keep doing them. Frequency and consistency are integral to firming up your middle. Start out by taking one to two yoga classes a week or doing one to two 20-minute yoga sessions at home. Gradually work your way up to three to five times per week.
And don’t forget your diet! Combine the core-blasting yoga moves with a whole-foods eating routine filled with lots of flat-belly foods and you’ve got the makings for a flatter stomach by summer.
March 28th, 2011