1. Stability

    Today we’re going to take a different look at core/abs training than you’re probably used to. When people ask questions about what to do for abs training, the usual answers are – crunches, situps, leg raises…that sort of thing, but the number one best things you can ever do for your core strength and stability are the biggest compound exercises you should be doing in the gym already!

    When you Squat, in order to keep good back posture and form, your core has to stabilize that weight so your torso doesn’t fold in half. When you Military Press your core has to stabilize your body so you don’t lose balance with that weight over your head. These are the exercises that will build functional core strength. Doing 1000 crunches is completely useless outside of the gym.

    Today’s workout of the day focuses on stability that can be transferred to overall athletic performance, and every day activities. It will also train your shoulders, and your legs! All you’ll need for this workout is a barbell, a dumbell, some floor space, and a trusted friend to act as a spotter.


    1. Military Press x 12 (3x4x Tempo)

    2. Planks x 30-60 Seconds

    3. Goblet Squats x 20


    Perform this circuit five times with as little rest as possible. After the last WotD you should be familiar with the horrors of using rep tempo, so load the barbell up with 10-20% less than you would usually press for 12 reps. For those not familiar, “3x4x” means “3 seconds up, 4 seconds down”. Make sure you either have a power rack to do the presses in, or a good spotter.

    Planks are pretty well-documented on the internet. Basically, lie face down and put your forearms underneath you in contact with the floor. Come up onto your toes and put your bodyweight through your forearms. Keep your body perfectly flat and hold this position. Thats it!

    Goblet Squats are a variation of the front squat which really hit the core hard. Squat holding a dumbell in front of your body with your hands underneath one weighted end so the other hangs below. Okay, if you still can’t picture it :

    What are Goblet Squats? Goblet Squat Instruction

    That should help!

    This is a killer on your core, and if you can even think about doing crunches after this all the power to you.

    Work hard, everyone! » WotD (11/05/2010)

  2. Major problem with typical crunches and leg raises is they shorten the hip flexors in a population that generally already has some form of anterior pelvic tilt.

    An issue I see with many people doing military presses is they turn it into a standing incline press. The lower back is in excessive lordosis and the spine is supporting all the weight, rather than the muscles supporting the spine.
    Solution: Squeeze your glutes and contract your abdominals while you press. Also, do not allow your shoulders to drift back further than your hips. Keep your knees bent. See how much your weight goes down, its humbling.


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