#BTExpert How To Get Flat Abs

Tone your midriff in six weeks with Sumaya Dalmia's expert advice

Whether you are scouting for a venue or attending cake tastings, one thing is for sure—wedding planning is in full swing. It’s time to focus on your health and a strong core is essential.

For a healthy timeline, set up a program three months prior to your big day to achieve your fittest body yet. I often see brides following ‘crash’ diets as a last-minute resort, which leaves them with sallow skin, instead of that lovely bridal glow. But if, for some reason, you missed the pre-planning phase, here is a compressed six-week guide to getting you closer to your dream body.

WEEKS 1-3:

• Thirty minutes of cardio twice a week, such as walking /jogging on the treadmill or outdoors, a cross trainer, or your favourite spin class. Followed by 15 minutes of stretching.

• Two mat-work sessions that can be done at home or in the gym. Include exercises like planks, side planks, hip bridges, side leg raises, push-ups, basic crunches, and jackknives. Perform all exercises for 15-20 repetitions and do two to three sets of each.

• If you’re working out in the gym, include a TRX full-body workout as it focuses on several core exercises. Use the Swiss/ exercise ball for an added challenge to your basic ab routine.

WEEKS 3-6:

• Practice a few 30-minute training sessions, which include exercises that use everyday functional movements like squats, lunges, push-ups, and dips. This kind of training counts for more calorie burn post your workout.

• If you are struggling to find the time, even small 20-minute circuit workouts at home focusing on exercises such as planks, side planks, hip thrusts, skipping, jumping jacks, and push-ups would be beneficial.

Exercise know-hows: Aim to dedicate three to four days a week to an exercise routine. Give importance to core training that focuses on the deeper muscles of your mid-section. This will help to not only visually improve muscles of the core but to also enhance your posture. NUTRITION GUIDE Diet will play a huge role in achieving this goal. You cannot ‘crash-diet’; instead, you need to include nutritionally dense foods and exclude foods that cause inflammation, bloating, and act as allergens in the body.

• Eliminate all refined flour and sugars (so, no bread, burgers, pizzas, pasta, cakes, and biscuits).

• Stay away from foods that are hard to digest and cause unnecessary bloating—like too many raw vegetables and heavy pulses.

• Avoid dairy to prevent breakouts and excess bloating.

• Steer clear of salt; it can cause you to retain unnecessary water.

• At least 10 glasses of pure distilled water every day and a few cups of green juice.

FOODS TO INCLUDE:

• Healthy fats which help burn fat faster—think salmon, coconut, chia seeds, almonds, and avocado.

• Low-GI and high-fibre grains and seeds such as brown rice, amaranth, and quinoa.

• Green leafy vegetables, because the chlorophyll helps increase blood oxidation.

• Fruits that are low in sugar like apples, berries, oranges, pears, and papaya.

• A skin booster juice made of celery, spinach, carrots, ginger, mint leaves, and wheatgrass.

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