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5 Ab Workouts for the Hotel Gym

5 Ab Workouts for the Hotel Gym

The hotel gym can be hit or miss but that shouldn’t stop you from getting your abs beach-ready.


If you travel enough, you’ll see every kind of hotel gym. From the tiny one with a treadmill and dumbbells to the massive fitness center and spa, the hotel gym comes in a wide range of sizes and it can be difficult to predict what equipment you’ll find.

The great thing about training your abs is that it doesn’t require much. In fact, there are some great ab workouts that you can do with no equipment.

So don’t worry so much about the quality of the hotel gym and focus more on shredding your core.

The Why and How of Ab Training

Want to get into a spirited debate with someone about a fitness topic? Then bring up ab training. You’ll get a different answer from everyone you speak to about the best way to train your abs. One thing that most people will agree on, at least for now, is that you need to train your abs directly.

Your midsection is where every movement starts. It’s why it’s called your core. It may be thought of as vanity work by some, but there’s little debate about how awesome a good set of abs look on a man or a woman.

Photo: CrossFit

Photo: CrossFit

A key thing to remember with ab training is that to see your abdominal muscles, direct ab workouts will only get you so far. You have to lose the fat around your midsection to see your abs and this comes primarily from disciplined nutrition, cardio, and exercises that burn a lot of calories. So don’t forget to do your squats and deadlifts.

A simple rule to follow at every meal is to divide your plate into thirds - one-third protein, one-third carbohydrates, and one-third healthy fats. And limit your intake of processed foods and alcohol.

With that said, here are five ab workouts for the hotel gym that will help get you a carved and toned core.

Workout #1

Complete the 15 exercises below in order, taking a 30-second rest every two exercises.

Workout #2

Do three rounds of this circuit:

  1. 20 Flutter Kicks

  2. 20 Crunches

  3. 20 Russian Twists

  4. 20 Elbow-to-Knee Crunches

  5. 20 Butterfly Sit-Ups (soles of feet together, knees out to the side)

  6. 20 Side-to-Side Knee Drops (on back, knees bent up in a right angle)

  7. 20 Crunches

  8. 20 Flutter Kicks

Workout #3

Complete the following circuit four times, resting 1 minute after the burpees in each round.

  1. 20 Leg Raises (From Lying Position)

  2. 1 Minute of Bicycle Crunches

  3. 20 Sit-Ups

  4. 20 Oblique Crunches (Each Side)

  5. 10 Burpees

Workout #4 (“Annie”)

This one is a CrossFit WOD (workout of the day) and requires a jump rope. If you have no jump rope, do jumping jacks. Perform the workout as fast as possible:

  • 50 reps each of:
    Double-Unders*
    Sit-Ups

  • 40 reps:
    Double-Unders
    Sit-Ups

  • 30 reps:
    Double-Unders
    Sit-Ups

  • 20 reps:
    Double-Unders
    Sit-Ups

  • 10 reps:
    Double-Unders
    Sit-Ups

*If you can’t do double-unders, do single-unders and double the number.

Workout #5 (Cardio + Core)

Set a timer and complete this workout as quickly as possible. Using the treadmill in the hotel gym:

  • Run a quarter of a mile.

  • Do 25 sit-ups or crunches.

  • Run a quarter of a mile.

  • Do 20 sit-ups or crunches.

  • Run a quarter of a mile.

  • Do 15 sit-ups or crunches.

Make this workout harder by adding another round or by completing it with a faster time.

The Bottom Line

The hotel gym might suck but that shouldn’t stop you from training your abs. Perform the workouts at high intensity to burn that belly fat as quickly as possible and train your abs two to three times a week.

Remember that direct ab training is only accessory work, meaning you must have your nutrition dialed in and you should be doing cardio, weightlifting, bodyweight training, or some combination of all of them for the best results.

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Cover photo by CrossFit.

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