20-Min At-Home Abs Workout for Core Strength and Fat Reduction

You’re in the right place if you want to strengthen your core and get that six-pack. In just 20 minutes, you can improve your core strength and lose tummy fat. The best thing is that you don’t need any weights or equipment, and you can do it wherever you want.

If you want to burn calories, you should do the workout in the form of a circuit. You can do it at home or in the gym, and you can do it whenever you have 20 free minutes.

Perform at least two rounds of this workout, and if you can, do three. Make sure to focus on the quality of the reps and not the speed of the sets.

It is recommended to perform this workout twice or three times a week, and after a few weeks, you will notice a more toned and sturdier midsection.

Why Only 20 Minutes Abs Workout?

You may wonder, “Is 20 minutes really enough?” The short answer is yes! If you’re consistent and put in the effort, even a 20-minute daily commitment can yield significant results over time. Not to mention, short workouts are more manageable to fit into your busy day and more sustainable in the long run.

Within a timeframe of 20 minutes, it is possible to develop a more comprehensive routine that targets various areas of your core, including the upper and lower abs, obliques, and even the lower back. This means a more balanced workout and better results.

Equipment Needed

You’ll need minimal equipment for this workout:

  • Yoga mat: To provide a soft surface for floor exercises
  • Optional: Light dumbbell or water bottle: For added resistance in certain exercises
  • Timer: To track time for each exercise and rest period

The 20-Minute At-Home Abs Workout To Lose Fat

This 20-minute abs workout consists of five effective exercises to work your entire core. Each exercise is performed in sets with specific rest intervals.

  • Number of Exercises: 5
  • Sets: 3 sets for each exercise
  • Rest Periods: 15-20 seconds between sets, 30-45 seconds between different exercises

1. Plank

The plank is a highly effective and versatile exercise that targets the entire core, including the abs, obliques, lower back, and stabilizing muscles.

A plank is an isometric exercise where you hold a static position, resembling the top of a push-up. It engages the core muscles by challenging their endurance and stability.

Plank Variations

  • Beginners: Knee Plank
  • Advanced: Side Plank or Plank with Leg Lift
Forearm Plank

How to do it

  1. Start to get in a push-up position, but bend your elbows and rest your weight on your forearms instead of on your hands.
  2. Your body should form a straight line from your shoulders to your ankles.
  3. Brace your core by contracting your abs as if you were about to be punched in the gut.
  4. Hold the position for a specific duration, such as 30 seconds to 1 minute.

Time duration

  • Hold for 30-60 seconds.

2. Russian Twists

The Russian twist is a great way to do your abs exercises at home more interesting. It engages your core and strengthens your abdominal muscles as well as your lower back.

This exercise helps to tone and tighten your abs and obliques and to trim your waist. It also helps to improve your balance, stability, and posture.

Russian Twist oblique

Russian Twist Variations

  • Beginners: Keep feet on the ground
  • Advanced: Lift feet off the ground or hold a light dumbbell

How to do it

  • Sit on the ground and lean back slightly.
  • Hold your hands together in front of you.
  • Rotate your torso to touch the ground next to your hip, then rotate to the other side.

Number of Repetitions

  • Perform 16-20 reps (8-10 reps each side).

3. Mountain Climbers

Mountain climbers is an explosive bodyweight exercise that engages multiple muscle groups at once, helping to improve your balance, coordination, strength, flexibility. It is a great way to improve cardiovascular endurance and burn calories to get six pack abs.

As you perform the move, your shoulders, arms, and chest work to stabilize your upper body while your core stabilizes the rest of your body. It’s particularly effective for strengthening your core muscles, including the abs, transverse abdominis, and obliques.

Mountain Climber


  • Beginners: Slow down the pace
  • Advanced: Cross-body Mountain Climbers

How to do it

  • Start in the push-up position with your arms completely straight and directly beneath your shoulders.
  • Your body should form a straight line from your shoulders to your ankles.
  • Squeeze your abs, lift one foot off the floor and bring your knee up towards your chest while keeping your body in as straight of a line as possible.
  • Return to the starting position and repeat the movement with your opposite leg.

Time duration

  • Perform for 30-45 seconds.

4. Leg Raises

Lying leg raises are touted as killer abs exercises, but your hip flexors actually reap some major benefits. So don’t be surprised if your hips feel a bit of the burn during this one.

It mainly works on the lower part of your abs, making it stronger and more toned. It also strengthens the muscles of the upper thigh, the quadriceps, without placing any stress on the knee joint.

Leg Raises Variations

  • Beginners: Single leg raises
  • Advanced: Add a hip lift at the top of the leg raise
Lying Straight Leg Raise

How to do it

  • Lie flat on your back on a mat or the floor with your legs extended and your arms by your sides.
  • Keep your legs straight and together.
  • Engage your core muscles and lift both legs upward towards the ceiling.
  • Hold your legs a few inches off the floor.
  • Slowly lower your legs back down to the starting position.

Number of Repetitions

  • Perform 12-16 reps.

5. Bicycle Crunch

Bicycle crunches are an excellent exercise to incorporate into your home workout regimen to strengthen your abs and core. It targets the rectus abdominis (six-pack muscles), obliques, and hip flexors.

In a 2001 study by ACE, it was found that in compared to the standard crunch, the bicycle crunch produces 148% more mean activity in the abs and 190% more mean activity in the obliques.

Bicycle Crunch


  • Beginners: Perform with feet on the ground between reps
  • Advanced: Hold the crunch at the top for a second before switching sides

How to do it

  • Lie flat on your back with your hands behind your head and your knees bent.
  • Lift your head, shoulders, and feet off the ground.
  • Bring your right elbow to your left knee while straightening your right leg.
  • Switch sides, bringing your left elbow to your right knee while straightening your left leg.
  • Continue alternating sides in a pedaling motion.

Number of Repetitions

  • Perform 16-20 reps (8-10 reps each side).
Know More: 18 Abs Exercises At Home Without Equipment

Sequence and Timing For 20-Min Abs Workout

Do the exercises in the order listed to get the most out of them.

  1. Plank
  2. Russian Twists
  3. Mountain Climbers
  4. Leg Raises
  5. Bicycle Crunches

Perform all the exercises back-to-back as a circuit. Complete the circuit 3-4 times.

Timing for Each Exercise, Rest Periods, and Sets

1. Plank

  • Time duration: 30-60 seconds
  • Rest: 15-20 seconds before moving on to the next exercise

2. Russian Twists

  • Repetitions: 16-20 reps (8-10 reps each side)
  • Rest: 15-20 seconds before moving on to the next exercise

3. Mountain Climbers

  • Time duration: 30-45 seconds
  • Rest: 15-20 seconds before moving on to the next exercise

4. Leg Raises

  • Repetitions: 12-16 reps
  • Rest: 15-20 seconds before moving on to the next exercise

5. Bicycle Crunches

  • Repetitions: 16-20 reps (8-10 reps each side)
  • Rest: 15-20 seconds before starting the next circuit

Between Circuits

  • Rest: 30-45 seconds to catch your breath and hydrate before starting the next round.

Each set of an exercise should take between 1 and 1.5 minutes to complete, including the rest period. Completing all five exercises should take around 5-7 minutes. With three circuits and a rest in between, the entire workout should fit into 20 minutes.

Nutrition: The Other Half of the Equation for Toned Abs

A good workout routine is important for core strength and fat loss, but it’s only half the battle. A good diet is just as important as a good workout for toned abs. As the saying goes, “Abs are made in the kitchen, not just the gym.”

Even if you do all the ab exercises in the world, you won’t get a toned midsection if you’re eating too many calories or eating too many unhealthy foods.

To know your fat loss calories requirements, use our free calculator.

Healthy Eating Habits for Reducing Belly Fat

  • Caloric Deficit: Essential for fat loss. You need to burn more calories than you consume.
  • Control Portion Sizes: Eating controlled portions helps you keep track of caloric intake. Overeating, even healthy foods, can lead to weight gain.
  • Eat High-Protein Foods: Protein-rich foods like lean meats, fish, and legumes can help you feel full longer, support muscle recovery, and boost metabolism.
  • Limit Sugar and Refined Carbs: These foods can cause blood sugar spikes and lead to fat accumulation, particularly around the belly area.
  • Consume Healthy Fats: Avocados, olive oil, and nuts contain fats that are good for you and can actually help you lose weight when consumed in moderation.
  • Fiber is Your Friend: Whole grains, fruits, and vegetables are rich in fiber, which helps you feel full and also aids in digestion.
  • Stay Hydrated: Drink plenty of water throughout the day. Sometimes thirst is mistaken for hunger.
  • Plan Your Meals and Snacks: Pre-planning prevents last-minute unhealthy choices. Always have a healthy snack like fruit or nuts at hand for when you get hungry.
  • Avoid Late-Night Snacking: Eating late at night can interfere with fat loss and can lead to weight gain.


Getting a toned, strong core doesn’t require endless hours in the gym. With a strong commitment, appropriate exercise, and a balanced diet, one can achieve significant progress within a brief period of time.

We encourage you to incorporate this 20-minute workout into your daily schedule. Consistency is key, and remember, every small effort counts.

Thank you for taking the time to read this blog. Now, it’s over to you—take that first 20-minute step today for a stronger and healthier tomorrow.


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  2. Rossow, L. M., Fukuda, D. H., Fahs, C. A., Loenneke, J. P., & Stout, J. R. (2013). This Link Will Open A PDF DocumentNatural bodybuilding competition preparation and recovery: a 12-month case study. International Journal of Sports Physiology and Performance, 8(5), 582–592.
  3. Davoodi SH, Ajami M, Ayatollahi SA, Dowlatshahi K, Javedan G, Pazoki-Toroudi HR. Calorie shifting diet versus calorie restriction diet: a comparative clinical trial study. Int J Prev Med. 2014;5(4):447–456.

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