Tummy toning exercises are important at any age, but more so in middle age. As you age and life's stresses increase, your body's physiology changes, resulting in more abdominal fat. Tummy toning exercises help to build a strong center and stabilize your lower back, which is important for preventing injuries and staying in optimal shape as you age.
Tummy Toning in the Morning
A strong abdominal center will help your posture and help you to feel leaner. Prioritize your abdominal exercises. Set your alarm to get up 10 minutes earlier each day, and make tummy toning the first thing you do in the morning. You might do crunches on your bedroom floor. While resting on your back with your knees bent and arms behind your head, do sit-ups that work the center and sides of your abdomen. Start off with as many repetitions as you can endure and increase the number each day.
Tone the Tummy While Sitting
If you have a busy schedule and it's difficult to find time for crunches, think of moments in your life when you might be sitting in a chair. In a private office at work or in the evening while watching television are good times to do abdominal exercises while sitting. With an upright back, hold in your stomach as you lift your feet off the ground. Keep your knees bent if you have back problems. If you do extend your legs, be sure to really engage your abdominals to avoid putting stress on your back. You can also work the muscles on the side of your abdomen by first locking your hands behind your head. Then reach for the opposite knee with your elbow while lifting one leg at a time off the floor.
Tummy Toning While Walking
A simple tummy toning exercise can be done while walking. Simply tighten your abdominal muscles while walking and be sure to breathe naturally. You can do this exercise while walking to your driveway or to your office from the parking lot, or while walking around the house doing other tasks. Anytime you find yourself walking, you can consciously pull in your abdominal muscles.
More Strenuous Tummy Toning
For a more advanced abdominal workout, lie down on your back with straight legs. Then lift your legs off the ground while keeping them as straight as possible. Keep your abdomen tight as you do this movement. It may be necessary to place your hands underneath your buttocks to prevent any strain on your lower back. Variations of this movement include raising the legs straight up until they are perpendicular to the floor. Then lower them slowly to the ground with tight abdominals and while breathing deeply. For an additional option, raise one leg at a time and lower each leg slowly to the ground.
A flat stomach requires an overall health and exercise regimen that burns fat and increases muscle. However, every little bit counts and the above tummy toning exercises will help to get you started.