Unveiling my Lower Abs’ Surprising Transformation: A Week of Daily Crunches

I decided to do tabletop crunches daily for a full week, focusing on the lower abs. I laid on the floor on my back, with my legs at a 90 degree angle. “tabletop” Shape with my legs. My hands were behind my head as I lifted my upper body and crunched towards my knees. I controlled the movement by concentrating on the contraction and flexion of my abs.

After a consistent week of tabletop crunches I noticed a noticeable change in my lower abdominals. They began to feel stronger and more toned. The crunches worked and targeted the lower abs. This created a firmer, tighter look. The increased focus on lower abdominal muscles also improved my overall stability and balance. It was encouraging to see such rapid progress, which motivated me to incorporate tabletop crunches in my regular workout.

 a photo of a man doing a tabletop crunch

A photo of a woman doing a tabletop crunch

The week-long challenge I completed was the three-legged plankThis is a fantastic core workout. After that experience I jokingly remarked that a week’s worth of tabletop crunches should be a breeze. Of course I was joking around, but I wasn’t joking enough. No one exercise can be used to work every muscle. You need to perform a variety exercises to work all the muscles.

What is tabletop crunch?

This variation is on the basic crunch. It’s more focused and less likely than a sit-up to cause lower back problems or overwork the hips flexors. Sit-ups are no longer as popular in recent years. Instead, the plank and all its variations have taken the spotlight. When done correctly crunches, sit-ups and other exercises like them deserve to be part of your fitness regime. They are effective.

Tabletop crunches are similar to other crunches but, because the legs are raised, your lower abs will get a much better workout (see below for more information). This exercise will work your hip flexors as well, but it is mostly a core strengthening exercise. As I have said before, a solid core is essential. improves posture and stabilityIt helps prevent or alleviate lower back problemsThe core muscles are also important for sports performance. They make it easier to do everyday activities, such as turning your head to look behind you. The core will help you achieve defined abs. However, you must also eat healthily and do plenty of aerobic activity. You can work on specific muscles to gain them, but fat cannot be targeted to reduce it. If visible abs are your goal, you’ll need to focus on your body fat percentage — here’s how to calculate your body fat percentageWhy you should care about.

How to do a tabletop crunch

an illo of a woman doing a tabletop crunch

An illo showing a woman performing a tabletop crunch

It is simple to start in the correct position; it is more difficult to execute the move. And as for maintaining form as you begin to tire…

  • This one is best done on a mat. Start by lying flat on your back. Raise your legs, bend your knees and align your thighs at an angle to your torso. Your lower legs should be parallel to the ground. Keep this position. Keep your legs straight.

  • As you exhale, engage your core muscles to lift your shoulders. You won’t be pulling your head towards your chest if you keep your hands in place. You’ll see many people doing this. They place their hands behind their heads. You could injure yourself, as it’s not good form. Be careful. As shown in the image above, you can also raise your arms up straight alongside your body and place them directly above your body.

  • Slowly lower your body back to the ground, while inhaling. This is one rep. You should aim to do three sets, each 5-10 reps depending on your strength and fitness.

  • If you are tired and in pain, you might start to rock to convince yourself that you’ve completed the reps. It’s a waste. If you cannot maintain your form, do fewer repetitions until you are stronger.

What I learned after a week of tabletop crunches

This movement was felt in my lower core

On the first day, I struggled with this crunch because I’m used to using a stability ball. It was difficult for me to perform crunches in a flat position, as I am used to more movement. It took me a while to get my core muscles to do the work. I did three sets of 10 reps, but I admit I rocked my body during the last few. Afterwards, I felt it deep — very deep — in my lower core.

I had to slow my pace to concentrate on my form

On the second day, my form was far better — more consistent, smoother — on the first two sets, but again I fell back to the rocking motion towards the end of the third set. This is easy to understand: If you are not physically prepared to perform the move, you will do it in any way possible. And because you can perform what appears to be a crunch, by bringing your lower back into play you risk injury. You won’t benefit from the move. Done properly, this is an intense and focused move — It demands your attention.

On the third day I did three sets of 15, then on the fourth day I went up to three sets 20 and took breaks of 20 second. I tried another thing: I crossed both ankles. It was easier to maintain my legs raised, since they were inclined towards the left or right. You’re cheating a bit, but this could be a great way to get started.

I have noticed a noticeable improvement

By the fifth day, I was feeling in my groove. (I did not resent this challenge at all while I was on holiday. I felt like my form was perfect, my ankles weren’t crossed, and the reward for my efforts was a swim in the pool with a cocktail.

At the end of the first week, I had done 40 crunches continuously (the very first time). I could have done more during the day by taking breaks. But this constant effort made a significant improvement within a few days. It was not because I had more strength but rather better form and confidence.

The tabletop crunch is a great move for your lower abs and it also makes you aware of them — days later, I can isolate and contract them without having to flex my other core muscles. It’s possible I could have done this before, but I didn’t realize it. Give it a go.

Tom’s Guide: More Information