Class #4038

Day 1: Abdominals

20 min - Class


Welcome to Day 1! Today, Carrie focuses on working the abdominals, challenging you to push yourself step out of your comfort zone so you can find more strength from within. She guides you to move from your core so you can keep your connection during creative combinations and transitions.
What You'll Need: Mat

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Hi everyone, welcome to day one of the challenge. The focus today is abdominals. We're gonna get started lying on your back, bend your right knee so that your foot is flat to the floor and extend your left leg out. The prep that we're gonna do right now, we're gonna refer back to throughout the workout. So this is our inspiration for the workout.

Breathe in to prepare and as you breathe out, just begin to send the belly down towards the back and allow the leg to float up. Repeat that, inhale as the leg goes down and exhale, send the belly to the back to lift the leg up. This time as the leg lowers down, create length in the front of the body, so that you have that long lean feeling throughout the front of the body. Your exhale is gonna send the belly even deeper down away from your T-shirt as your leg floats up. Do that twice more.

The leg lowers down and you feel lengthened, from the tip of your toe all the way up to the top of your head. Exhale, float the leg up and do that one more time. Inhale, lower the leg down, the exhale sends the belly to the back and that floats your leg up. Now lower the leg down, rest it on the floor and take a moment. And as you're laying here, I want you to feel active.

I want there to be a connection of your belly deepening to your back and that connection is somewhat holding up your left leg. We're gonna switch legs now, left knee is bent, right leg is extended out. With an inhale, find the length through the top of the head down to the toes. Exhale, send the belly away from your T-shirt as your leg floats up high. Lower the leg down, breathe in, exhale, pull deep through the front of the body to bring the leg up.

Remember this sensation so that as we go through the workout today we can think back about the way this feels, to really try to guide the leg movement with your core, and float the leg once again, lower the leg inhale, exhale float the leg up. Find that deepening of the belly. Now let's breathe in here. As you exhale flex this foot and lower it, all the way down. We're gonna keep this leg flexed, we're gonna keep deepening through the body thinking of that long length feeling.

Send the other leg down now. Both legs are gonna be flexed. And we're gonna flow right into the 100 from here. Your next exhale draws your chin into your chest and you'll curl and look forward to your legs, purposely flexing the feet the toes are pulling back and we're getting that deepening through the front of the body, as we hold up the legs. Now rest the head down.

So the legs are not lifted, I wanna be clear, the legs are just lightly positioned on the mat. Breathe and prepare. Breathe out, draw the chin and curl again and as you're curling up, you're flexing your feet, you're kind of making your legs feel heavy. The belly is deepening down away from the T-shirt as you connect to using your long, long front body to hold up those legs. Rest the head back down.

This one flows into a 100. The exhale draws the chin in, we curl up and we're gonna hold the legs this low and pump the arms, inhale. So I'm not afraid of the fact that my legs are working to even hold up my legs here. But I wanna also think of using my belly to hold up my legs. Breathing in two, three, four, five and out.

(breathing in and out) As I look down at my toes, I'm seeing just a little shimmy, there working a little bit hard and that's a good thing. Trying to work my whole body from the tips of my toes, all the way up to the top of my head. Breathing in and out, (breathing in) and exhale (breathing out) two more long breaths, inhale and exhale two, three, four, five, inhale and exhale two, three, four, hold it's not over. Extend through the toes and rest the head down. You're still doing Pilates.

The belly is pulled deep and towards the back. Now from here flowing right into your first roll up of the challenge, we're gonna lift the arms, lift the head, peel off the mat with your inhale and exhale stretch inhale stretch. Inhale, start to come back. Now I want the arms low, the spine articulates deep in through the middle, now when you put your head down, do not stop working, stay connected, stay strong, think of deepening the belly away from your T-shirt. Lift the arms, inhale peel up, exhale stretching over.

Again just like that one. Inhale, start to go back, the arms are low, articulate through all the way down, stay strong. Again, arms lift peel up, exhale stretching over. A little different this time, we're gonna inhale, roll up to sitting straight, float the arms and float the gaze and roll down, looking more up and take it down. Still doing Pilates here.

Arms lift, head lifts, peel it up, exhale stretching over. We're gonna sit up tall again. Lift the arms, lift the gaze and take it down. Still articulating through the back. Once again like that.

Lift the arms, lift the head, peel it up, stretching over, inhale sitting up straight, arms lift, gaze lifts, and you roll all the way down, and rest. Circle your arms around, you're still doing Pilates. Don't release the energy that you feel from the tips of your toes up through the top of your head. We're gonna flow right into the single leg stretch from here. Starting with the legs on the floor breathe in.

As you breathe out, draw the chin into the chest and curl. Now think back to the way that we started the workout. We'll keep the left foot pointed forward. But think about it being light in that same way that we started. Keeping that leg light, hug the other knee into the chest.

Now we're gonna curl a little deeper into it, drop the tummy off the T-shirt and now hover the foot off the floor. We switch legs, we breathe in one. So there's this constant feeling of floating the leg off the floor. Switch (breathing out). Inhale and exhale, hold.

Now let's have some fun. We're gonna send the legs out completely together and then roll to your side, so you extend your legs out, roll to your side and pick your legs up and lower them down. Lift them two, lower down. Three and down. Four, and down on the fifth when we hold, now we've got to go to the middle and we're going into the double leg stretch.

So we're gonna curl through the middle, we're going into the ball position. Now, inhale arms and legs out low everyone, circle the arms bring it in. Inhale, exhale bring it in. Challenge yourself, see how low can you take your legs and then bring it in. Don't be afraid to use your legs.

Use all your muscles, bring it in one more, inhale, exhale bring it in. Now we roll to the other side and we pick both legs up. One, lower down. Two and down, three (breathing out). Four on the fifth one we hold up, now we've got a roll to the side and we get right into scissors.

So roll, one leg up, other leg down. Tap-tap, tap-tap, breathe in and out. (breathing out) Light long, leg here. So think, pull the belly to hold up the low leg, one, two, one, two. Now take both legs up, now we have to transition this into the side, and we pick the legs up and take them down.

Two and down, three, four, one more, hold. Now we transition this one into both leg lift, lower. So ready, flip, curl, high the legs go low. Bring them up, inhale and down. Bring them up.

Challenge yourself, I bet you can go a little lower than you think. I kept this safe for years. I'm stronger than I thought I was. One more, down, bring it up, we got to flip to the other side. Both legs go, up and down two, keep the legs together, I lost mine there.

Keep them together and down. It's so much more fun that way. Down, up last one lift and hold, now we transition through, we can go ahead and bring the hands behind the head, knees to chest, crisscross one, and two. Breathing in and out. In, out, two more sets today, inhale, exhale that's enough.

Knees come in and the head comes down. Over to your tummy now for your Swan. Bring your forehead to the mat, place your hands under your shoulders and do Pilates. So send your shoulders back and down. As you're laying here, allow your body to have some energy, not tension or strain, just some energy.

Through the top of the head, down through the toes and a little connection of the belly up towards the back. Begin to go into your extension. Lift your chin first, arch your upper back, middle back, lower back and then reverse that on the way down. Again, head, neck, shoulders take it up. And lower that down.

And again, float it up and take that down. You get a quick counter stretch but not a long one, big breath in, long exhale (breathing out). Let's turn around and go through a series of crunches. Reach your arms out in front of you, roll down to your mat. You're gonna bring your right knee into a tabletop position.

As you breathe in here to prepare, exhale, draw the chin into the chest, reach the arms forward and we're back the way we started, even though this leg is up. So the leg is gonna stay up, but this leg, we have the deepening of the belly and that feeling of lightening the legs, who will flex through the ankle hands behind the head. Our crunches start here, going up, two, three, keep your crunches to arrange where you can work and not see everything jumping around. Pause for a second. Big inhale, start another set of eight there.

Really look at what your legs are doing. If you're seeing your left leg hopping off the mat, don't try so hard. Six, seven, hold up on eight. Now we're gonna twist. From here, I'm thinking of my left elbow reaching down to my left foot.

So I'm rotated but I'm going towards the legs. Up, two, three, four, five, six, seven, I lift and hold. Now we're going back to the middle, you're gonna exhale and draw the belly in so tight that this left leg lifts, and now it inhale lowers. Exhale it lifts, inhale it lowers. Exhale it lifts, inhale it lowers, this time exhale lift it, crunch up to it, one, two (breathing out).

Did I mention this was the Abs class. And six and seven hold on eight. Bend the knee to tabletop, send the other leg down, flex the foot, it's other side too. This leg is light. Four, five, deep in the belly, away from the T-shirt and hold, eight more.

Go up (breathing out). Four, six, twist to the left, make sure the right leg is still light. Crunch up to it. One (breathing out) four, five, lift and hold. Now come to the middle.

You're in your very highest curl, this next exhale drops the tummy so tight that that leg lifts, inhale you lower it. Lift it, inhale lower it. Lift it, inhale lower it, lift it and hold, crunch up to it. One, two, three, four, five, six, seven, hold up on eight, bend the knee, it's not over, curl a little higher, deep it through the middle a little more, let's send one leg all the way down and hold it. Send the other leg down, curl high and hold it, rest all the way down.

The next thing we're gonna do is a plank series but we have to roll up first. So let's see if we can do a beautiful roll up, after all of those crunches. Draw the chin to the chest, look forward and let's see what happens, I never know. Peel up, oh I made it. (laughing) Do a little stretch over and let's come up, turn around and we'll go into a, just squat your head here.

So hands and knees, and I want you to find a lot of length, through the top of the head and out through the tailbone here. We're doing Pilates through the whole body again. This is a great place to even think about your fingertips. So use your hands, use your fingers, don't hang in your wrists and your joints, press into the fingertips and reach one leg back. Okay, so now we have to think back to the start of the class again.

Just like when you were laying on your back, I want you to be in this position and I want you to press your foot, down into the floor. Use it as a tool to help you find a greater connection through the front of the body. So as I push my foot down, I'm pulling my belly away from my T-shirt even tighter. Now I'm gonna send my other leg back (breathing out) and I just hold my plank. Nice long breath in, long exhale pulls the tummy up from the T-shirt as I pushed it down into my fingertips and down into my toes.

This creates a lot of energy through the whole body so we are feeling the whole body work. One more long breath in, (breathing out) long breath out (breathing out). Knees come down this is a quick counter stretch, just long enough to get some length in the back, come forward again send the other leg back first, let's take our time finding our plank. That's gonna then flow right into leg pull. So we're pressing the foot down into the floor, pulling the belly in and up, find that connection and then boom, other leg goes back.

We pick up one leg, rock back, come together, switch, rock back, come together (breathing out) the whole time, I'm trying to keep that connection of my belly pulling up and away from the T-shirt, so that I get an even greater feeling of length in the front of the body. Last time and knees come down, sit back, take a moment. Now we're coming back up onto the hands and the knees and we're gonna go into a little down dog stretch. Curl the toes forward, send the heels down, reach the tail up high. Now from here we're just gonna enjoy the stretch for two long breaths.

As you let your breath out, allow your heels to just soften to the floor and your ankle joints to relax. Just let those joints release, to help you deepen into your calf stretch. Now from here walk your feet together into a little Pilates V stance. We're gonna take this into a plank. Now we're back to that same, strong, lengthened out feeling.

Breathe in. As you breathe out, send so much energy down into your feet and so much lift up through your tummy, that it pulls you up into a Pike. Now take it forward, inhale. Again pull up through the front of the belly as you send your hips up high. So using your mind-body connection to help you get even more out of this, than you naturally would.

Inhale, lengthen out through the top of the head, exhale chin balls to chest and you lift up through your middle one last time, inhale lengthen and exhale. Walk the feet back to a parallel stance, soften in for that long stretch, again. We're gonna bring the knees down, sit back and take a little stretch there. And now on to your back, so we're gonna go through a little teaser and balance control combination exercise. So we'll lie down beautifully.

Arms reaching out and just roll down to your mat. With the knees into the chest, begin to create the connection of your arms down into the floor and extend your legs to the sky, nice long breath in. As you exhale, lower your legs down to your working level, which we've been challenging today. So let's see if we can get those legs nice and low. From here, we're gonna do like a jackknife.

Just go over and then lift up. Now from here we're gonna take both arms at the same time and we're gonna slide them along the floor and reach back, now from here. One leg lowers, I'm gonna lower my right leg as I exhale and reach my left leg up but I'm still thinking pull the tummy, away from the T-shirt. And then I inhale, meet the legs together in the middle. We do the other leg.

Exhale, so I'm still getting that long, lean, yummy feeling and then I'm meet in the middle. Now from here I'm essentially in a teaser, I just have to rock it up. So I'm gonna bring my arms up, roll with control, find that teaser, I did it. And then I'm going down, this stuff isn't easy, and over again. So now I've got to take the other leg down first.

So exhale, it's my left leg down as my right leg lifts and I meet in the middle. Right leg down, left leg lifts, deep in through your center inhale, meet in the middle, and then I'm just in my teaser, it's just can I keep that shape and bring it up, and I take it down. I always get so excited when I make it teaser. Right leg goes down, left leg lifts. Inhale, meet in the middle.

Left leg goes down, right leg lifts, meet in the middle. And I bring that up. Lift the arms, just take it up, take that down. And then we do it one last time, with the left leg lowering first, right leg floats and meet in the middle and switch and meet in the middle, and I teaser it up. From here, slowly lower the legs, down, down, down, down, we're back to the way we started the class, the legs are on the floor but they're light.

Roll all the way down, rest onto the floor and maintain that great energy that you have given your body, from the tips of your toes, all the way up through the top of your head and take that with you for the rest of your day. Thanks for joining me for day one, I'll see you next time.

10-Day Pilates Reset Mat Challenge: with Carrie Pages


Tanya S
23 people like this.
Thanks Carrie for these creatives!  One thing : realistically speaking the clients doing these workouts don't really perform optimally to this pace of yours of verbal your 20 mins class might be 35-40 mins for my clients coz little alignment cues need to be given by me to them before the main exercise .
6 people like this.
Thanks Carrie ! I’ll join you daily on the mat , having a reformer I tend to neglect mat work so great to start again . Roll overs didn’t feel very good for me today so I opted out my back didn’t feel flexible in the short time frame . See you tomorrow from my living window less quarantine days .
3 people like this.
Thank you so much ! I have a question: during the single leg stretch, when you bring your knee towards you, you loose your pelvic in the neutral position. I've learnt that we must bring the knee just above the hip to not loose the pelvic neutral. What is the correct form? I'm a bit confused. Thank you
 In the plank position, where should we place the hands? Right under the shoulder or a little bit further than your shoulders? Thank you 

MaryBeth C
4 people like this.
Thank You Carrie for an energetic class! I loved the leg transitions. It was so much fun. I’m looking forward to the next 9 mornings :)
Hi Pauline! I like to place my hands slightly forward of my shoulders so my wrists are a little bit happier.  As far as neutral when performing SLS I appreciate the feedback!  For this challenge my focus was definitely fun and flow over form, so thanks for keeping me on track!
Thanks for joining me on Day 1 everyone!!!!
Anne M
Reduce my challenge to level 1 please
A. Matheson
Chuhang G
1 person likes this.
Wow that’s a good workout, the last 2 minutes almost killed me...
1 person likes this.
Carrie Pages it is a great flow ! perfect to work on those abs !

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