It is important to train your abs the same way you would train your other muscles. Try a triple set, a super set, a quadruple set, etc. Try to focus on time under tension, different angles, and stimulus to keep your body guessing.
Many people do one abs exercise, and then rest. Try hitting all areas of your abs in the below sequence and you will see amazing results. Here is an excellent routine I designed on The Total gym that will target just about every area of your abs using the above principles. It will leave you sore for days!
Lay on your back on the Total Gym and adjust the metal handles upward so that they are upright in a field goal position. Now go into a set of crunches with each hand holding onto one of the handles and aligned directly over your chest.
When you crunch the board will move but the handles should remain over your chest the whole time moving only slightly. Crunch up, hold and return to the starting position. Try twenty reps.
Then, without resting, hold the handles over your chest, head flat and press your back into the bench and drive both of your knees toward your chest. Straighten your legs out to a locked position hold and repeat. Try twenty reps.
Again, without resting, stay flat and lower your arms to your sides (still with handles in each hand) and begin to do heel touches. Alternating side to side reach one handle toward one heel sliding it along the bench and repeat side to side. After twenty reps immediately crunch up, (bring your legs up in the air to the point where you can keep your back flat) and go right into a set of Pilate’s 100’s. Bring your arms to your sides, about 2 inches off of the bench, and pump up and down for a total of 100 reps.
For the more advanced abs connoisseur, after you’ve completed your 100’s, go right to the end of the Total Gym, put your toes on the edge of the bench, and raise yourself up into a plank position and rock yourself back and forth for a total of 50 reps. When you are done your abs will be on fire! Use this routine until you are able to complete three sets. Add variables to make it more difficult if it gets too easy.
On your crunches try crunching and drawing one knee in and then extending the same leg out. Repeat on the other side, then do regular crunches. Ten on one leg, 10 on the other, and then 10 with both feet flat. Then for the leg-ins add a stability ball and hold it between your ankles. Substitute the heel touches For Russian twists (I call them windshield wipers). Lay flat on your back and holding one handle in each hand, rotate side to side like a windshield wiper. Then go into your Pilate’s 100s, but before you do your planks, add twenty pike ups, or jackknifes using the end of the Total Gym board.
The possibilities are endless with the Total gym. Experiment, have fun, your nervous system will be on overload, and force new muscle fibers to be recruited to give you a solid and powerful midsection. Thank You Total Gym!