advice needed re abs excersises

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Joined: Mar 07
Posts: 33

Posted: 25 Aug 2007, 04:12
Have lost 12.5 kg and want to tone up. Have started walking and have hired treadmill for the rainy days. When I started toning up the tum with gentle sets of crunches have had really bad muscle spasm down the left side. Any suggestions?

Joined: Jul 07
Posts: 23

Posted: 25 Aug 2007, 12:52
Hi. Good to hear that you are exercising. In terms of your ab muscles, when a muscle goes into temporary cramp, all the fibers within the core of a muscle contract simultaneously. This most commonly occurs when you suddenly move or overextend a tensed-up muscle that hasn't been properly prepared for the movement. Contracted fibers squeeze off blood flow to the muscle, creating irritation and more pain. The additional pain triggers even tighter contractions. You're caught in a painful vise without a chance of the muscle relaxing on its own. There are a few key points you should consider to help yourself: (a) Consult a fitness instructor to make sure you are performing the ab crunch properly and have the right environment/equipment. (c) Make sure that your exercise program includes proper phases to warm up and develop other muscle groups. Because ab muscles take time to build and they can strain easy if not relaxed properly. (c) Consistency is more important that number of reps. Which means that overstraining your muscles won't produce better results. Gradually increase your reps. Less is more in the long run. (b) Be sure to hydrate before you exercise but don't drink too much water, especially cold water. (c) If you've injured your ab muscles in the past consult your physician before performing ab exercises.

Joined: Mar 07
Posts: 33

Posted: 27 Aug 2007, 14:35
Thanks for the tips Jakes. I think I do need to consult a trainer. I was in such a lot of pain from the cramp that I was reluctant to go there again. I had warmed up running first but did have a lot of cold water before doing the crunches so that might not have been helpful.

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