Wouldn’t it be great if you could get fit without having to leave your bed? It might not be as impossible as you think. This short workout routine is perfect for adding a little sweat to your latest Netflix binge. You won’t even need to change out of your pajamas!
Even simple exercises like these can deliver major benefits. The core movements in this routine are key for getting a flat belly. They also strengthen the part of your body responsible for keeping you upright and moving.
Unlike cardio or weight training, there is no fancy equipment required. These bed exercises can help you reach your fitness goals from the comfort of your mattress.
1. Bicycles for 30 seconds
Bicycles were named the best ab exercise by the American Council on Exercise in 2001. ACE evaluated 13 common core moves for how well they stimulate the rectus abdominus and obliques. The “bicycle maneuver” was the winner.
- Lay flat on your back with your hands behind your head, elbows pointing out.
- Bend your knees so that your legs are in a 90-degree angle.
- Raise your shoulders off the mattress, keeping your hands behind your head.
- Straighten your left leg and hover it about an inch off your mattress.
- At the same time, pull your right knee into your chest.
- As you pull your right knee in, twist your torso to touch your left elbow to your right knee.
- Switch your leg positions – straighten your right leg while your left knee pulls in.
- Touch your left knee to your right elbow. Continue alternating sides.
2. Leg raises for 30 seconds
Leg raises specifically target the lower abs. These help strengthen your hips and lower back. If you find this difficult, bend your knees to modify the movement.
- Lay flat on your back with your arms stretched down by your sides. You can also place your hands underneath your tail bone if that is more comfortable.
- Straighten both legs and hover an inch off the mattress.
- Keep both legs straight as you raise them up to form an L shape with your body.
- Lower back down to hover an inch off the mattress. Repeat.
3. Regular crunches for 1 minute
Crunches zero in on your upper abs. When completing this exercise, be mindful of your form. Keep your back straight by looking up at the ceiling and take care not to pull on the neck. Use your hands only to support your head.
- Lay on your back with your knees bent toward the ceiling.
- Place your hands behind your head, elbows pointing out.
- Raise your head and shoulders off the mattress as you crunch towards your knees.
- Lower back down and repeat.
4. Heel touches for 30 seconds
Heel touches are a great exercise to target the obliques, or the sides of your core. It also performs double duty by working the upper abs as well.
- Lay on your back with your knees bent toward the ceiling and your feet shoulder-width apart.
- Stretch your arms out straight toward your feet.
- Lift your shoulders off the mattress.
- Crunch to your left side so that your left hand touches your left heel. Repeat to the right.
- Alternate touching the left and right heels.
5. V-Ups for 30 Seconds
This exercise works the upper and lower abs at the same time. It can be difficult for beginners, but don’t get discouraged! To modify, bend your knees.
- Lay flat on your back with legs stretched out straight.
- Straighten your arms above your head.
- Keeping your legs straight, raise them up close to a 90-degree angle.
- At the same time, lift your arms and shoulders up to touch your feet with your hands. Don’t worry if you can’t quite touch, just do your best!
- Lower your arms and legs back down and repeat.
Complete this circuit for three rounds total.
Getting a fit, flat belly doesn’t have to be complicated. Perform this routine a few times a week and no one will be able to tell that you traded the gym for your bed!