It’s that time of year again! Trees are budding, basketball tournaments dominate sports news, and the multiple clothing layers that have hidden bodies from sunlight since mid-October are being stripped away one at a time as the temperature rises. We do not sweat t-shirt weather because we are participating in March Ab-ness and by the time we’re down to one layer, our core will be strong.
For those of you who are new to March Ab-ness, here’s how it works. Choose a core-strengthening goal for the month of March, do it, and see how great you feel and how much better your pants fit in April. It can be a certain number of crunches crunched, minutes spent planking, or even second sucking in your belly. (Sucking in is contracting the muscles and technically, that counts as exercise.)
My goal this March is 3 minutes per day of ab exercises for a total of 93 minutes of core building. I find that having a daily goal and a grand monthly total helps keep me on track. If I miss a day here or there, I can make it up and still stay on par for the month. If three minutes sounds like unattainable agony for you, aim for one minute. Let’s be honest: for most of us, even ten seconds a day is an improvement and an ab-worthy goal.
A bikini is not in my future, Katie, so why should I participate? March Ab-ness is not all about looks. It’s about strengthening your core. “Think of your core muscles as the sturdy central link in a chain connecting your upper and lower body. Whether you’re hitting a tennis ball or mopping the floor, the necessary motions either originate in your core, or move through it.” Your ab muscles and back muscles work as a team; if one side weak, the other side will try to compensate which can lead to injury or pain. In fact, core strengthening exercises are often prescribed to relieve lower back pain.
Some more benefits of a strong core are better balance, better posture, and better performance in sports, chores, and the bedroom. That’s right, ladies, a strong core improves your tennis swing, your vacuuming, and your love-making. You can read more about the benefits HERE.
If you’re going to participate, consider leaving a comment below with your goal to encourage others (and me!) to make this March a core-changer.
The Lord is my strength and song, And He has become my salvation; He is my God, and I will praise Him; My father’s God, and I will exalt Him. Exodus 15:2 NKJV
Images courtesy of: mixtapecomics.com (ab exercises-I love this picture, by the way…finally, someone else who exercises in baggy shorts!), bizarrocomics.com (snowmen), offthemark.com (fruit)