Everyone wants killer abs. And everyone wants to lay on the couch all day.
What if you could have both?
Well, you can't. But there are definitely some great ab exercises you can do with out leaving your sofa. So if you're feeling kind of flabby but you really don't want to turn off the game, here's how to have the best of both worlds ...
Let's start with the pinnacle of all ab routines, the plank. All you need to do is hold yourself in the push-up position for 30-second increments, which happens to be the length of a commercial. So challenge yourself to do one commercial, then two, then an entire between-innings break. Side planks work too. And doing them on the couch actually might give you a better workout because you will need to work harder to stabilize your torso.
Now move to pulse-ups, which are every bit as efficient as crunches and are very simple. Just lie back, point your toes to the ceiling, and "punch" the sky. You can do this one without taking your eyes off the TV.
Finally, try some mason twists. You P90Xers will know this one by heart. This is a move that works your entire core. It helps considerably if you have a weight, so grab a six-pack of soda (or a dumbbell, if you have no imagination) and scoot toward the end of the cushion. Then lift your legs up off the ground and rock back. Now twist, lightly tapping the soda/weight on each side. Do not let your back hit the couch. (And do not open the soda after this exercise.)
Now, let's be real: All of these exercises are better on a mat laid on the floor. You can still watch the game from there.
And don't use a good ab routine to rationalize a popcorn binge. As the saying goes, abs are made in the kitchen.
Eric Adelson can be reached at email@example.com.