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Count Your Way to a Stronger Core

Heather Hudson

If you were to interview 100 people, guess what would be on the majority of most people’s fitness wish list?

Trim my waistline!

Hopefully by now you know that you can’t just do thousands of crunches and get a six pack. There is no such thing as spot reduction. And, if you don’t eat right, you can have the strongest core in the world, but no one will ever know it because it’ll stay hidden under what you’re eating in secret….

But, if you’re wanting to truly live a healthier lifestyle (note: lifestyle, not a few weeks of your life) and simultaneously increase true core strength, then here are two exercises that will surely increase overall basic core strength quickly IF DONE CONSISTENTLY.

Know your numbers!

When you start these two exercises, I encourage you to write down your numbers. For the sit ups, write down how many you can do with perfect form (be honest!) as your starting point. For the planks, write down how long you can hold it with perfect form (ahem…again, be honest). This will be your starting point and then go to your calendar and write down 30 days from now. At that point, you will count again and compare your numbers.

If you are consistent with these two exercises, and follow the suggested plan as followed, I would guarantee your numbers will be higher, not just by a little, but by a LOT!

I truly believe in keeping track of your strength abilities on paper to compare month by month, because it usually shocks people how quickly they get stronger and this immediately creates a flood of feel good emotions that encourage them to keep going! It has always worked for me!

Are you ready to get started? Here are the two exercises.

Do the below form of sit ups 3 times a week until failure, meaning, just do as many as you can with the exact form shown below until you can no longer do them without pulling your hands away from your chest. If you cannot do any, have someone hold your feet.


Above is starting position (shoulder blades touch floor)


Above is finishing position (elbows touch knees)

Do the correct form of plank 3 days a week to failure; meaning, hold it for as long as possible with the correct form (shown below at the very bottom). Time yourself each time and strive to go longer by a few seconds each time. When your form starts to suffer, stop the timer immediately.


Do not let your hips come up or allow your neck to drop down as seen here.


Do not let your hips sag down either.


Keep your body straight and tighten your core. This is a full body exercise, you will feel it in your back, shoulders and legs as well. Eventually, with practice, you will be able to hold a plank for at least one complete 3 minute round.


When you are doing these exercises and it starts to get tough, rather than feel discouraged, know that in just 30 days, you are going to be nailing these exercises!

Good luck and have fun with this!