8-Minute Abs 2.0

8-Minute Abs 2.0 workout

UPDATED 6/27/17: This workout is still one of my most popular on Pinterest so I thought it was worth filming a video version of it. Revisiting old workouts is a great way to track progress, and I was pleased to find I could complete it with ease this time around (when I originally made it back in 2013 I distinctly remember being sore the next day). Maybe it’s time to make a 3.0 to follow up this 8-minute abs 2.0 workout …

Below is the original blog post with the addition of the new video.


We’ve all heard of 8-minute abs, but have you guys ever watched the original workout video? It’s…well, it’s special. And by that I mean it was filmed in the late 80s/early 90s, the spandex is on a whole new level of not OK, and the instructor’s commentary is pricelessly cheesy. Lots of “hang in there, gang!”

That being said, it’s not a bad ab workout, and I’ve done it countless times. The problem is, if you don’t switch up your workout routine, any fixed sequence is going to eventually stop being challenging. 8-minute abs quickly became an easy joke of a workout for me, and it was time to give it a serious makeover. Not just regarding the wardrobe (c’mon man, the bright blue spandex shorts with tube socks combo should be illegal), but with the exercises as well. I kept the structure of the workout the same, and switched up most of the ab movements. The result was an 8-minute abs 2.0 workout that actually challenged me again.

And before we get to the workout breakdown, how sick are the Nike running leggings I’m wearing?? I’m obsessed and trying to wear them as much as possible before summer hits—think they’d pass as Casual Friday-appropriate? I may test that boundary…

8-Minute Abs 2.0 workout

8-Minute Abs 2.0

Equipment I Used:

You’ll do each move for 45 seconds and move immediately on to the next without taking a break. The last move (elbow plank) is only held for 30 seconds. I just set my Gymboss Interval Timer for 11 rounds of 45 seconds of work and 0 seconds of rest and then watched the timer on the last round to end it at 30.

8-Minute Abs 2.0 workout

  • Leg Lifts: Laying on your back with hands under your bum for support, lift legs off the ground and up, perpendicular to the ground (keeping them straight the whole time). Lower.
  • Side V Crunches (Right): Start laying on your side with bottom arm stretched outwards on the ground for support. Do a side crunch, lifting your legs up and crunching them in to meet your elbow and raised torso.
  • Side V Crunches (Left)
  • Toe Touch Crunches: Lay on back with legs lifted perpendicular to the ground. Crunch up, reaching your hands towards your toes (you don’t actually have to touch them—I can’t, anyway haha)
  • Cheek-to-Cheek Plank: Start in an elbow plank position. Keeping shoulders level, twist your torso to lower your right hip to the floor. Return to plank position and then twist the other way, lowering your right hip to the floor.
  • Side Plank Lifts (Right): Start in a side plank position. Lower your hips towards the ground, and then lift upwards, crunching into an arch passed your original straight plank position. Continue lowering and raising.
  • Side Plank Lifts (Left)
  • Seated Leg Scissors: Sit with hands lightly on ground by your sides for support, lean back slightly and lift legs off the ground. Crisscross them back and forth keeping toes pointed, left over right then right over left, and so on.
  • Butt Lifts: Lay on back with legs lifted perpendicular to the ground. Lift butt straight off the ground, reaching toes towards ceiling, and then lower. Try not to rock back and forth too much (the momentum makes the exercise easier, but you’ll get a better workout from slow, controlled lifting and lowering).
  • Windshield Wipers: Lay on back, legs perpendicular to the ground and arms outstretched for support. Lower your legs to the right, twisting your hips, until they are just hovering above the ground. Lift back to starting position and over to the left side. Continue back and forth in a windshield-wiper motion.
  • Elbow Plank (30-sec): You know the drill!

My parents’ dog Ginny was visiting while I shot this workout and between high-fiving me in the face with her paw and running in front of the camera every 5 seconds, I would say she definitely is not a proponent of fitness. Had to give her a little loving scolding: 🙂

8-Minute Abs 2.0 workout

Stay tuned for 8-minute abs 3.0—I’m sure after a few months, my muscles will have mastered and become bored of this one as well!


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  1. oh my gosh, I want those leggings!!

  2. those are some crazy cool tights!

  3. love mixing up my ab routine! thanks for the update. although, i totally think you could rock the blue spandies and tube socks, just sayin…

  4. I LOVE IT ! I do these core exercises 3 times a week and can not get over how much stronger and tighter my core is !!! You will see and feel amazing results it you just DO IT !!

  5. LOVE the leggings (and the ab workout 🙂 can’t wait to try it)

  6. Damn! Hello abs! Loved this workout, thank you!

    And I agree, LOVE those pants!

  7. 50 plus says:

    The dog matches the outfit!

  8. Yes! Seriously, where did you get those pants??

    • Nike – I included the link in the blog post, you can order ’em right online 🙂

      • I was wondering if you had to size down when you bought those awesome pants.

        • I ended up ordering the size I normally wear and keeping them (because I’m too lazy to return things haha), but I definitely could have gone down a size.

  9. I cant wait to try this tomorrow!

  10. I love your leggings! This workout looks great too!

  11. Chelsea says:

    Yep that’s one great ab workout! Good one to mix it up with

  12. Where are the leggings from??

  13. The leggings are over a hundred bucks. How could anyone possibly afford those?

  14. If people couldn’t afford them, they wouldn’t be for sale.

  15. Jaclynn says:

    This may be a silly question, but I am no expert on core exercises…for the leg lifts do you go up and down for 45 seconds? Or hold it for 45 seconds? Thanks!

  16. I’m about as beginner as beginners get, so I moved everything down to 30 sec for now because I just couldn’t keep the 45 sec intervals…is that OK for now? 🙂

  17. VERY BAD ARCH ON THE BACK, for the elbow plank!!!! The exercise itself is not all that matters, is doing it with good technique.

    • Hi Sara! I try to demonstrate proper form to the best of my ability in each post, but sometimes it’s difficult to capture when I’m setting self-timer on my camera and then running back to the mat to get in position in time. 🙂

  18. M Summers says:

    I understand that the plank at the end is just holding still, but are you doing reps for all the others? If so, how many on each one please?

  19. ok, the exercises where your feet have to be perpendicular to the ground, what if I have trouble getting my legs straight? No matter how hard I try, I just can’t! Does this affect my workout? And why can’t I get my legs straight?? Thanks!

    • A slight bend in the knee is perfectly fine! I have difficulty with it as well sometimes, but as you build flexibility and strength, you’ll be able to straighten your legs more and more.

  20. Oh wow this is an intense an regimen! It’s really great though thanks for sharing! I had back surgery over a year ago and this is perfect for tightening my core. Thanks again!:)

  21. Tyler Kurtz says:

    Ok, so I’m a male, unlike everyone else who has been asking about this, I already have near perfect abs from my years of Mixed Martial Arts training. So my question is, is this still a good workout for me to try, just because its mixing up the routine?

    • Haha I love your modesty, Tyler! 🙂 I think it would definitely still be a good workout, but maybe you should increase the intervals so that you do each exercise for 60-90 seconds instead of 45.


  23. I was on the nike site after a quick look at the workout and had to buy them before i could do it.Ha my flatmates and i used to those 8min workouts but we where laughing at the cheesyness the whole time so liked yours way more. How do you keep track of the 45sec.. count, interevill timer or a big clock? i found keeping time the hardest

    • I use an interval timer and set it for 11 rounds of 45 seconds (and then just stop 15 seconds early for the last plank interval). So glad you like the workout! 🙂

  24. Hi Nicole!! I love this ab workout. I just want to know how many times should we do the rutine?

    • Hi Lina! Going through the sequence just once is 8 minutes. But if that’s not enough of a challenge for you, you can always make it harder by going through it twice! As for how often you should do it–really as much as you’d like. I always suggest switching up your routines, but you could do this one as much as 6x a week until it stops challenging you.

  25. Stefcorbin says:

    You are adorbs. Thank you for this updated workout in a format we’re all familiar with.

  26. Rachel Brannon says:

    I need to know where she got those workout pants!? I have to find them!!
    Rachel Brannon rachelbrannon@yahoo.com

  27. First off, love your site. I always browse fitness & lifestyle blogs and always come back to yours. Also, I’m pretty partial to you because I’m a Boston Girl myself.

    Second, love love loved this workout! It’s quick and it kicked my butt (or abs?) which is just what I needed. Much better than the original 80’s guy and his gang. Also, thank you for mentioning the Gymboss Interval Timer! It is exactly what I have been looking for in the AppStore and made the workout a lot more organized.

    Finally, I don’t know if you do vids or not but I would love to see a youtube video of this! I think it would make the workout much easier to follow & some of your exercises I’m not so familiar with and would love some tips on form as I go along.

    Thanks So Much!

    • Hi Kate! Thanks so much for your kind words about my blog 🙂 Creating a YouTube channel is on my 2014 to-do list. I’m excited to start making videos to accompany my workouts!

  28. Racheal Zauche says:

    where did you get these super cute work out leggings?

  29. do you remember the name of those amazing nike leggings? A friend of mine just found some online and I wanted to search to see if I could find some too : )

  30. Great way to hit those core muscles! I am making an early resolution to keep it up until I find 3.0!

  31. Okay so I have a question. m posting on the old post seen as you updated it.
    I’ve been following you a long time and I remember when you called out your own form in the plank you said you stuck your butt out because it looked better and then you corrected it to be less bootilicious. So in the old pics, yes it’s clear that you are thrusting your ribs and sticking your butt out but in the video you have zero lumbar curvature with a flat back and your hips raised quite high. That means you don’t have a neutral pelvis and your TVA muscles aren’t activated. So my question is, do we go goldilocks and do the mean between the video and the pics or is the video plank you demo’d how you were trained to plank? I see lots of fitness trainers do the same thing and their lumbar curvature is nowhere to be seen so they’re not actually working their abs. Anyone reading can search Katy Bowman’s website for how your back and abs should be in exercises like tabletop and plank.

    • Hey! That’s a great question. And for anyone else reading this, here is the Katy Bowman article being referred to: https://nutritiousmovement.com/what-a-waist/. In the video, I would say my hips are an inch or two too high–something that happens sometimes if I don’t have a mirror. I have a slight anterior pelvic tilt when I stand from tight hips and poor posture at my desk, which I’m constantly conscious of trying to correct. In an effort to correct that in plank, I may have overcompensated a tad here, but had I just had my hips a couple inches lower I think the alignment would have looked correct. I’ll try to locate a mirror to use filming in the future to avoid any confusion. So to clarify for lumbar curvature, while I’ve worked with trainers who have taught me varying degrees of alignment cues, you want a neutral spine (the space between a tuck and a booty pop). You haven’t lost the natural curve to the low back, but you’re also not letting it be exaggerated. For someone with low back pain or just beginning to build up core strength, I’d rather see them with my video alignment vs the alignment in that last picture from 2013.

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