With Exercise Menu exercises, I am all about getting straight to the point of the workout. You are looking to do an ab workout without gimmicks, tricks or unrealistic promises, but at the same time, you want to be sore tomorrow. With this Down and Dirty 20-Minute Circuit Abs Workout Routine, I promise you will feel it where it counts.

I must give you some credit though. You are smart. Why? Because you realize the importance of a strong core. Sure, you probably want to rock the 6 pack abs like the rest of us, but you also recognize that a strong core will help you perform better in your other fitness activities. Whether it is hitting longer drives in golf, a home run in softball or improving your efficiency with your other workouts, a strong core is key and the focus of this 20-minute circuit abs workout routine.

Keep in mind, that although we all focus a bunch on our abs, our back muscles are just as important if not more. Don’t worry, because this workout routine will also target some of the key muscles in your back to help you improve you posture as well. As a physical medicine and rehabilitation physician, I can appreciate the differences I have seen in those with strong core and back muscles and those without. Trust me, back problems are no fun to deal with and can be difficult to treat at times. So take care of your back and core with this Down and Dirty 20-Minute Circuit Abs Workout Routine.

20-Minute Circuit Abs Workout Routine


Perform each exercise for 90 seconds. Allow yourself a 30 second break between exercises, and then repeat!

Hold for as long as you can over the 90 second period. If you need to take a break, that is okay, but get back into the hold as soon as you can.

Try this first without a dumbbell. If you can make it the entire 90 seconds without a dumbbell, then step up your workout and hold at least a 5 pound dumbbell to start.

This is one crazy difficulty exercise, but is seriously effective in working your lower abs, which are often neglected. It’s tough, but worth it.

My favorite back exercise… And not only because I love the name. It’s an effective exercise for your entire back, including glutes and hamstrings. Try to hold for the full 90 seconds.

Twisting ab exercises are more functional that the typical crunch, so they are always important to include into your regimen. You can’t get much better than the wood chop!

Picture: A tribute to our military service personnel.