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Go With the Flo

Today's blogger: Janet Lee, deputy editor

Let’s face it, ab work can get redundant. You crunch, you do planks, you try woodchoppers—sure, there are a bunch of really good ways to challenge your midsection, but when you’re at the gym, it’s hard to remember what they all are. I recently took a new abs-focused class here in San Diego called Flo Fusion Fitness. Created by three-time Olympian Flora Hyacinth, D.C., who’s now a chiropractor, the 50-minute workout is designed to target your core while working other areas of your body as well. All of the moves are done in front of a FreeMotion dual-cable cross machine — at least one limb at a time is attached to it — and there are six different levels of each exercise. The moves are a combination of Pilates, yoga and traditional toning exercises, but adding the cable resistance to them takes the core challenge up way more than a notch — you’ll be lucky (or just limp) if you can get through all of the exercises in one level. While it did seem like a lot of ab work, rest assured your middle muscles will no longer be cruising along on auto-pilot. The widespread (good) soreness I felt the next day let me know I targeted my entire core and then some. Classes are small and only in San Diego for now, although I think you might be seeing more of this type of workout in gyms around the country soon. Flora also provides a complete movement assessment when you sign up, so you know exactly what muscles might need a little extra attention before you get started. She’s offering a free 30-minute session to newbies until May 20, so check it out. (Go to for more info.) 




Flora demonstrates a Level I (beginner) exercise. You can try this at home with two resistance bands and a dumbbell!





Flora demonstrates a Level III move. At home, use a resistance band and a Bosu or squishy couch cushion.




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