Who has 11 minutes to work their abs? Not me, so I upped the intensity and cut the duration. Presenting 5-ish minute medicine ball abs. Grab your timer, set it for 30 seconds of work with 10 seconds of rest for 8 rounds (so it’s half the 11 minute routines.)
Medicine Ball Selection
You’re going to want something that you can balance on for the later rounds but something small enough that you can hold it for the endurance rounds. If you’re doing medicine ball abs for the first time, as in you’ve never tried dumbbell or kettlebell ab routines (weight in general), then start with something light-ish in the 4-6 lb range. Depending on what gym I’m at I’m grabbing either an 8 or 10 lb medicine ball for these routines.
Start on the lighter side when you try this routine for the first time or at least find something that fits comfortably in your hands. This will make you sore but you don’t want to be juggling a ball that’s too big or too small for you.
Rounds 1 & 5 – Deadbug
If you’re right handed let’s start with your left leg and if you’re left handed let’s start with your right leg for the first round then switch it up for the 5th round (so you’ll do 1 side for the entire 30 seconds then when you get back to it you’ll do the other leg.)
For the deadbug lay on your back and lift your legs with knees bent to 90 degrees. Hold the medicine ball at roughly chest level with arms extended holding the ball. Kick the designated leg straight out and bring your arms across your face in the opposite direction (if you kicked out your left leg bring your arms to the right side of your face fully extended out.) Bring your leg back in to the 90 degree knee bend and your arms back their starting position to complete one rep.
Rounds 2 & 6 – V Ups
If you’re new to V Ups or struggle with them do 1 leg up instead of 2 legs up. Start laying on your back with your arms and legs extended far away from your body. Hold the ball in your hands. Bring your arms and legs towards eachother then lay back down to complete one rep.
Breathe out when bringing your arms and legs together and breathe in on your way back down to the ground. This is also good for cardio but please exercise caution if you have pre-existing neck or back problems.
Rounds 3 & 7 – Russian Twists
It’s time to sit up on your butt. Depending on your current condition of your hamstrings and quads, either lift your feet slightly off the ground crossing at the ankles (if your hamstrings and quads can handle it) or place your feet on the floor (if you find yourself having to take breaks due to tight hamstrings.) Hold the ball a little above your belly button, twist to your left, tap the ball down on the ground, pick it up, rotate back to center, rotate to the right, tap the ball down on the ground, pick it up, twist back to center. That’s one rep.
Rounds 4 & 8 – Plank on Ball
Plank like this, only on a medicine ball
This is your standard arms fully extended plank, only instead of putting your hands on the ground you want to put your hands on the ball (this is the biggie where medicine ball selection makes a world of difference.) Get yourself into your plank position and hold. Don’t forget to breathe. This is your “resting” period before the cycle begins again (when it’s round 4) and the final activity you’ll be performing for the day (when it’s round 8.)