How to Tone the Stomach After Weight Loss

You've worked hard to lose those extra pounds you were carrying around, and you deserve a set of abs you won't mind showing off in a bathing suit. Regular exercise and a healthy diet are the best ways to reduce belly fat, but toning your stomach muscles will help give you a leaner appearance once your weight is in a healthy range. Keep making healthy eating choices and engage in regular aerobic exercise to prevent the weight from creeping back on, and add at least two or three strength-training sessions a week to your exercise regimen -- with a particular focus on core exercises that will tone your abdominal muscles.

Step 1
Lie on your back on the floor with your fingers laced behind your head and your legs raised. Bend your knees at a 90-degree angle so your calves are parallel with the floor. Pull your abs in and lift your left shoulder off the floor, twisting to meet your right knee as you pull your knee toward your chest. Straighten your left leg as you complete the movement. Return to the starting position and repeat the exercise lifting your right shoulder to meet your left knee.

Step 2
Lie on your back with your feet on floor and your knees bent. Hold a medicine ball or dumbbell above your head with both arms straight, elbows against your ears and your arms flat on the floor stretched above your head. Pull your abdominal muscles in and roll your shoulders up off the floor while raising your arms several inches off the floor, keeping your arms straight. Hold the position for two counts, then lower yourself back to the floor.

Step 3
Kneel on the floor holding a stability ball above your head with one hand on either side of the ball. Exhale and lean your torso to the right, letting your arms and the ball follow the movement of your body. Raise yourself back up so your back is straight, and repeat the exercise leaning to the left. After returning back to the center position, lean your upper body forward, squeezing your abs and letting your arms and the ball come forward in front on your head as you bend down before returning to the starting position.

Step 4
Lie on your stomach on a stability ball with your toes and palms on the floor under your shoulders. Tighten your abdominal muscles, imagining you're lifting them off the ball while slowly walking your hands forward so your toes come up off the floor. Keep your back straight and continue walking your hands forward until the ball is under your knees. Hold your position for a breath and walk your hands backward to return to the starting position.

Step 5
Sit with your feet flat on the floor and your knees bent. Stretch your arms out behind you and place your palms flat on the floor, keeping your back straight. Lean back as you bend your elbows until your upper body is supported on your forearms. Tighten your abs and straighten one leg before slowly returning to the starting position and repeating the exercise with the other leg. As your abs get stronger, lift both legs so your body forms a V-shape and lift your arms off the floor, straightening them along either side of your body.

Things You'll Need
Medicine ball or dumbbell
Stability ball