Olympian Nastia Liukin's Go-To Ab Workouts

Closeup of Nastia Liukin
Shutterstock | 673594

Health & Lifestyle
Fatima Araos

Nastia Liukin is currently enjoying a tropical getaway in Costa Rica and, naturally, she’s been burning up her Instagram feed with a lot of pics. The 32-year-old former gymnast recently uploaded a photo of herself, and those flat abs of hers are giving us serious inspiration and making us want to run to the gym ASAP.

Luckily, Liukin’s fitness secrets are no secrets at all. Keep scrolling to see how she keeps those abs so flat.

Her Go-To Ab Exercises

The 2008 Olympic all-around champion shared with Today three exercises that she does to tighten and strengthen her core. She suggests doing these moves every day as she does – or even a few times a day – to get the best results.

“I always feel better when I get in a workout,” she explained, “even if it's 30 minutes or 20 minutes of something, every single day.”

The three exercises are the plank, the side plank, and the Russian twist. Scroll for the details.

Plank And Side Plank

Nastia Liukin posing in black crop-top and red skirt
Shutterstock | 73910

To do the plank, get down in a push-up position with your forearms flat and your body raised off the floor. Maintain this position for one minute, or if that’s too long, do only 15 or 30 seconds to start.

For the side plank, lie on your right side and raise your hips and upper body off the floor, using your right arm with the forearm flat on the ground for support. Next, lift your left arm and leg high up, and repeat 20 times. Do the same moves on your left side. If you find it too hard to raise your arm and leg, just hold the position.

Russian Twist

Nastia Liukin posing in black crop-top and maxi skirt
Shutterstock | 564025

To do the Russian twist, sit on the floor with your knees bent. Recline your torso so that it creates a V shape with your thighs. Then swing your arms from side to side, making sure you feel the twist in your core. Do this move 20 times on each side.

When you’ve done all three exercises, repeat everything twice. Watch the video below.

On her website, Liukin shared four additional moves that target the core, including V-ups, reverse crunches, around the world, and plank-ups.


If you’re looking for a quicker way to get fit, the Olympian suggests running. “The most effective for me is running, though it's not my favorite,” she explained to Today. “But if I need to get in shape quickly, I need to run.”

As for lifting weights, she said she doesn’t do that often, and if she does, “it's probably very light weights, five to ten pounds, no more than that."