30 day ab challenge for beginners that works

The first question you are probably asking when looking for information to help you tighten your abs is this – do 30 day ab challenges work? The honest answer? Ab challenges only work if you do. What I mean is that that is more to sculpting abs than doing 100 sit-ups a day for 30 days. Eating a balanced diet, doing exercise that lowers body fat, and creating a calorie deficit are pieces that have to work together to help you lose the belly pooch.

I have previously shared the best ab exercises for beginners, the ultimate 30 day leg challenge that works like crazy, and the best 30-day workout challenge to lose weight. Now, We are going to talk about the best 30-day ab challenge for beginners, how a meal plan for abs for females should look like and what other workouts you should be doing in addition to the ab challenge to reduce body fat.

Now, We are going to talk about the best 30-day ab challenge for beginners, how a meal plan for abs for females should look like and what other workouts you should be doing in addition to the ab challenge to reduce body fat.

30 day ab challenge for beginners

How to eat for abs

Being in the fitness industry for years, I have seen a lot of misinformation about what one should and should not eat to lose weight. The lies go as far as advising people to cut certain food groups to speed up weight loss. Yes, lots of people have indeed lost weight by cutting out carbs or fats from their diets, but more have gained all the weight back after getting back to eating normally after a restrictive diet plan.

Crash diets are not the way to go if you want to avoid gaining weight after a certain period. I fully agree that what you eat is important to defining your abs but, it does not necessarily mean that you must cut food groups from your diet. Carbs should not be demonized because they are your body’s main source of energy, and if you are going to do a 30 day ab challenge for beginners, you will need that energy.

How to eat for abs

A key takeaway here is that there are obviously certain foods that you should never eat when trying to lose weight, but you should never cut out of your diet food groups, not even starchy food.

Foods to avoid for abs

These are the things you should cut out of your diet to lose belly fat:

Sugary drinks

Consuming high amounts of sugary drinks has been known to lead to weight gain. Beverages such as sodas, iced tea, fruit drinks, soft drinks, sports, and energy drinks, usually contain high amounts of calories and added sugar. The amount of sugar that is loaded into some of the beverages can be equivalent to that in candy. By consuming high amounts regularly, you might as well liquidity three candy bars and call it a drink. Long-term effects of drinking these sugary drinks include diabetes, tooth decay, and of course, obesity.

Alcohol

Most alcoholic drinks are high in both sugar and calories and make it hard for people who drink regularly to lose belly fat. While alcohol does not necessarily slow down metabolism, it affects how the body absorbs nutrients. Your body’s fat-burning process gets messed up as it focuses more on breaking down alcohol and not fat.  I do not know about you but, when I have more than one glass of wine, I usually feel crappy the following day, and exercising on such a day goes out of the window.

Processed foods

Foods to avoid for abs

Heavily processed foods such as low carb anything, white bread, potato chips, and candy bars, breakfast cereals sweetened with sugar or corn syrup, cookies, cheese, pastries, and pizza should be avoided if you want to sculpt or maintain beautiful abs.   While they look like food, most of the processed foods contain insane amounts of artificial preservatives, coloring, flavor, and other such chemicals, and too much sugar and salt, all of which are bad for your health. 

Other Foods to avoid for abs include cakes, deep-fried foods like fried chicken and French fries, ice cream, pizza, donuts, processed meats, microwave popcorn, fast-food burgers, and low-fat yogurt.

Ab diet plan

Your abs meal plan should consist of plenty of vegetables, a good portion of lean protein, complex carbohydrates, healthy fats, and lots of water.

Good protein includes skinless chicken breasts, eggs, chickpeas, turkey, fish, beans, and lean meat. Good carbs for weight loss include quinoa, brown rice, sweet potatoes, whole-wheat pasta, couscous, leafy greens, and oatmeal.

Avocadoes, nuts and nut kinds of butter, olives and olive oil, butter, pumpkin seeds, and fish oil are some of the best fats for weight loss that you should stock up.

If you are short on snack ideas, I have written a few articles on healthy snacking such as healthy sweet snacks for weight loss if you have a sweet tooth, low-calorie snacks for weight loss, and high protein snacks for weight loss.

30-day ab challenge for beginners that works

With this 30-day ab challenge for beginners, you will not be training abs daily because that is just insane! Any fitness trainer that knows what they are doing will tell you that you cannot train the same muscle groups for 30 days straight.

For your muscles to grow, they need time to recover. If you do not give your muscles enough recovery time, you are bound to experience inflammation, exhaustion, and even injury. The ideal time is 24 hours between each workout and, if the workout is intense, you might need longer than that.

30-day ab challenge that actually works

In addition to recovery time for the muscle groups, you will also notice that this ab workout plan includes cardio exercises. This is because you cannot target weight loss by doing endless exercises. You need to incorporate exercises that will turn your body into a fat-burning machine and walking is the best for weight loss.

This workout plan is divided into 4 phases and progresses from beginner level to intermediate. Phase 1 starts at a low intensity to allow beginners to jump right in without feeling overwhelmed.

Week 2 of the 30-day ab challenge picks up the pace a little bit but remains manageable for beginners. While exercise intensity moves from easy to intense in weeks 3 and 4, you still won’t be doing 200 crunches. 

30 day ab challenge no equipment

PHASE 1

Day 1

  • 12 Leg raises
  • 12 crunches
  • 20 sec elbow planks
  • 20 sec side planks (20 sec each side)
  • 12 V- Crunches
  • 12 Russian twists

Repeat 2X

Day 2

30 minutes power walk

Day 3

  • 12 Leg raises
  • 12 crunches
  • 20 sec elbow planks
  • 20 sec side planks (20 sec each side)
  • 12 V- Crunches
  • 12 Russian twists

Repeat 2X

Day 4

30 minutes power walk

Day 5

  • 15 Leg raises
  • 15 crunches
  • 30 sec elbow planks
  • 30 sec side planks (30 sec each side)
  • 15 V- Crunches
  • 15 Russian twists

Repeat 3X

Day 6
45 minutes easy walk
Day 7
Rest

PHASE 2

Day 8

  • 20 mountain climbers
  • 15 crunches
  • 15 single leg drops
  • 15 reverse crunch
  • 30 sec elbow planks
  • 30 sec side planks
  • 20 flutter kicks
  • 12 Russian twists
    Repeat 3X

30-Day Ab Challenge

Day 9

40 minutes power walk

Day 10

  • 20 mountain climbers
  • 15 crunches
  • 15 single leg drops
  • 15 reverse crunch
  • 30 sec elbow planks
  • 30 sec side planks
  • 20 flutter kicks
  • 12 Russian twists

Repeat 3X

Day 11

35 minutes power walk

Day 12

  • 30 mountain climbers
  • 20 crunches
  • 20 single leg drops
  • 20 reverse crunch
  • 35 sec elbow planks
  • 35 sec side planks
  • 25 flutter kicks
  • 20 Russian twists

Repeat 3X

Day 13

45 minutes easy walk

Day 14

Rest

PHASE 3

Day 15

  • 30-sec hollow hold
  • 16 Mountain climber twists
  • 16 Russian twists
  • 16 leg raises
  • 16 reverse crunches
  • 16 scissors kicks
  • 16 crunches
  • 30 sec side planks (30 sec each side)
  • 30 sec full plank
  • 16 Bicycle crunches

Repeat 2X

Day 16

35 minutes power walk

Day 17

  • 30 sec hollow hold
  • 16 mountain climber twists
  • 16 Russian twists
  • 16 leg raises
  • 16 reverse crunches
  • 16 scissors kicks
  • 16 crunches
  • 30 sec side planks (30 sec each side)
  • 30 sec full plank
  • 16 Bicycle crunches

Repeat 2X

Day 18

30 sec hollow hold

  • 16 mountain climber twists
  • 16 Russian twists
  • 16 leg raises
  • 16 reverse crunches
  • 16 scissors kicks
  • 16 crunches
  • 30 sec side planks (30 sec each side)
  • 30 sec full plank
  • 16 Bicycle crunches

Repeat 3X

30-day ab challenge no equipment

Day 19

Rest

Day 20

45 minutes easy walk

Day 21

Rest

PHASE 4

Day 22

  • 30 sec hollow hold
  • 20 mountain climber twists
  • 20 Russian twists
  • 20 leg raises
  • 20 reverse crunches
  • 20 scissors kicks
  • 20 crunches
  • 30 sec side planks (30 sec each side)
  • 45 sec full plank
  • 16 bicycle crunches

Repeat 3X

Day 23

Rest

Day 24

  • 30 mountain climbers
  • 25 crunches
  • 25 single leg drops
  • 25 reverse crunch
  • 35 sec elbow planks
  • 35 sec side planks
  • 25 flutter kicks
  • 25 Russian twists

Repeat 2X

Day 25

45 minutes power walk

Day 26

Rest

Day 27

  • 30 sec hollow hold
  • 25 mountain climber twists
  • 25 Russian twists
  • 25 leg raises
  • 25 reverse crunches
  • 25 scissors kicks
  • 25 crunches
  • 35 sec side planks (35 sec each side)
  • 45 sec full plank
  • 25 bicycle crunches

Repeat 3X

Day 28

Rest

Day 29

  • 30 mountain climbers
  • 25 crunches
  • 25 single leg drops
  • 25 reverse crunch
  • 35 sec elbow planks
  • 35 sec side planks
  • 25 flutter kicks
  • 25 Russian twists

Repeat 3X

Day 30

  • 30 sec hollow hold
  • 25 mountain climber twists
  • 25 Russian twists
  • 25 leg raises
  • 25 reverse crunches
  • 25 scissors kicks
  • 25 crunches
  • 35 sec side planks (35 sec each side)
  • 45 sec full plank
  • 25 bicycle crunches

Repeat 3X

How to do the 30-day ab challenge with no equipment

1. How to do lying leg raises for abs

How to do leg raises

If you do not have access to a gym’s captain chair, lying leg raises are the alternative exercise for hanging leg raises.

Lie down on your back, keeping your shoulders down and tummy tucked in.

Place your hands either under your bum or on the side of your body.

Bring your legs together and raise them to form a 90-degree angle.

Slowly lower legs until they are about a few inches from the ground. Slowly bring your leg to the starting point.

That is one rep. If your back arches as you lower your legs, then don’t go as far down.

Do as many reps as the workout requires.

2. How to do crunches

How to do crunches

Start by lying flat on your back with your knees bent and feet on the ground.

Place your fingertips behind your ear-do, making sure fingers are not locked together.

Crunch up using your abs and not your neck. Lower your body to the starting position, and this will count as one rep.

Do as many repetitions as the workout requires.  

3. How to do elbow planks

How to do elbow planks

Start in a push-up position, with your elbows under your shoulders.
Bend your elbows 90 degrees and rest your weight on your forearms. Your elbows should be directly beneath your shoulders.
Place feet hip width apart and contract your abs and hold this position.
Do not crane your neck. Maintain a straight line from your head all the way to your feet.

4. How to do side planks

How to do side planks

Lie on your side and keep your body in a straight line and your feet together.

Rest your weight on one elbow and slowly lift your torso off the ground.

Contract your abs and hold this position for 20-30 seconds.

5. How to do V- Crunches

How to do v crunches

Lie on your back with legs extended, and arms at the sides.

Suck in your belly button and raise your upper body towards your knees, and your knees towards your chest to form a V.

Hold this position for a second before releasing to the starting position.

Repeat as per workout.

6. How to do Russian twists

How to do Russian Twists

Sit on your bum, knees bent and firmly plant the feet on the ground.

Slightly lean back and keep your spine rounded.

Contract your abs and extend your arms in front of you.

Rotate your torso from the right to the left to complete one rep.

If this move feels easy for you, you can add a little resistance by using dumbbells while twisting.

7. How to do mountain climbers

How to do mountain climbers

Get into a full plank position and tighten your abs.

Bring your right knee toward your chest and for 1-3 seconds.

Return to the starting position and switch the legs.

8. How to do single leg drops

How to do single leg drops

Lie on your back, with your arms by your sides or tucked under your tailbone, and legs extended towards the ceiling.

Contract your abs, and lower your right leg as far as you can go without lifting your back off the floor.

Return your leg to the starting position and switch legs.

Continue alternating the legs until you complete the required repetitions.

9. How to do reverse crunches

How to do reverse crunches

Lie with your back, legs extended in the air, and arms at your sides or underneath your tailbone.

Focus on using your abs, not your hands, to slowly lift your tailbone off the floor.

Slowly lower yourself to the starting position to count as one rep.

Repeat the movement, making sure not to use momentum to power your next rep.

10. How to do flutter Kicks

Lie flat on your back on the floor, arms by your sides and palms facing down.

Extend your legs out, taking care not to lock the knees.

 Lift your legs about 6 inches off the floor. Make small, rapid up and down movements with your legs, keeping the abs as quiet as possible.

11. How to do the ab hollow hold (hollow man)

 

How to do the ab hollow hold (hollow man)

Lie on your back, legs extended, arms at your sides.

Contract your abs and raise you’re your legs and upper body off the floor and hold.

12. How to do mountain climber twists

 

How to do mountain climber twists

Start off in a plank position.

Contract your abs as you bring your right leg towards the left elbow and pause for 1-3 seconds.

Exhale as you switch legs and repeat the movement.

13. How to do scissors kicks

Lie on your back, legs and arms extended.

Lift your legs and thighs and cross the left leg over the right leg.

Alternate to complete the reps, making sure not to crane your neck.

14. How to do full planks

How to do full planks

Get into a push-up position, resting your weight on your hands and not the elbows.

Suck your belly button in towards your spine, keeping feet shoulder-width apart.

Maintain a straight line from your head all the way to your feet, and hold still for 20-30 seconds or as the workout requires.

15. How to do bicycle crunches

How to do bicycle crunches

Lie on your back, with your hands behind your ears.

Contract your abs as you curl up to raise your legs above your hips and upper body off the floor.

Slowly bring your right elbow towards your knees in a cycling movement.

Repeat with the opposite arm and leg and cycle for 12 reps or as the workout requires.

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