Fast and Effective Ab & Butt Workout
This routine is designed to give you firmer abs with an extra lift to your back side. It’s a 20/20 routine- 20 reps each exercise for a total of 20 minutes of work. Depending on your fitness level, you may want to start with only 10 repetitions instead of the recommended 20. Take breaks to stretch as needed. As you become stronger this routine will take you less time. If you finish in less than 20 minutes- great! That means you get to repeat the exercises that challenge you the most. Commit to the 20 minutes!
Exercise 1: Lateral Toe Walks (2 minutes) Start with feet hip distance apart, toes turned out. Lift your heels and bend your knees to come into a semi-squat. Step your left foot wide while you squat down lower, then bring your right foot to meet the left (straightening the legs slightly). Step again to the left. Now repeat to the right, take two steps. Pick up the pace and get your heart rate going. Tip: Keep your heels in to maximize gluteus medius contraction.
Exercise 2: Step Back Lunge (20 each leg) Start with feet hip distance apart. Step the right foot back, keeping the heel lifted. Bring the right knee towards the floor, aiming for 90 degrees in both knees (keep your left knee above your ankle). Lift yourself half way up and push forward out of the right foot to return to the starting position. Repeat the same leg a total of 20 times. Tip: Keep your shoulders above your hips to keep the weight in the legs.
Exercise 3: Cross Chop (20 each side) Standing on your right leg, extend your left leg to the side so just the toe is resting on the floor. With hands clasped together, bring them over to the right shoulder. Pull your left knee towards your right shoulder as you draw the hands down to the left hip in a chopping motion. Return to the starting position. Repeat this 20 times each side.
Exercise 4: Crunch (20 reps.) Lying on your back with your knees bent and feet flat, bring your hands behind your head. As you exhale, lift your chest towards your thighs. Avoid pulling on the head, keeping fist distance between chin and chest. Aim to get your shoulder blades off the floor. Tip: Draw the belly in before you crunch.
Exercise 5: Loaded Bicycle (20 each side) Start lying on your back with both knees bent and feet lifted to make 90 degrees in the knees. Place your right arm straight overhead and take your left arm bent under your head and grasp your right arm above the elbow. Extend your right leg straight, above the floor. As you exhale, bring your right shoulder up towards your left leg. Repeat one side and then switch to the other. Tip: Give a little lift to the hips as you move your upper body toward the legs for more of a challenge.
Exercise 6: Side-lying Leg Lifts (20 each leg) Lying on one side of the body, stack your shoulders and hips. With outstretched, lift both legs off the ground about an inch. Lift and lower the top leg (foot flexed), while keeping both legs elevated. Tip: Watch that you don’t drop the toe or heel during the movement to ensure consistent muscle training.
Exercise 7: Low Plank Knee Ins (20 each leg) Start with hands directly under the shoulders. Walk your feet back and lift into a full plank, then lower your knees to the floor and rest the top of your feet on the floor. Extend your right leg straight behind you at hip level. Watch that your low back does not dip (the abdominals should be engaged). Bend your right knee out to your side (like a dog at a fire hydrant) and draw it in to your elbow while turning your head to look at it. Extend the leg behind you once again. Tip: Your abs should be working along with the glutes. Draw your belly button up towards the ceiling and contract through the waistline as the leg moves to the elbow.
Exercise 8: Plank Leg Lifts (20 each leg) Transitioning from exercise 7, tuck the toes under and lift into a full plank. Press through your heels to engage your glutes and keep the abdomen lifted. Lift one leg about 1-2 inches off the floor, pressing through the heel, then slowly lower. Switch to the other leg, alternating with each repetition. Tip: keep your head lifted (lined up with your spine) while in plank to keep from straining the neck.
Remember to stretch at the end of the routine.
For the best results, do this 3-4 times a week. Use this routine for at least 4 weeks (no more than 6 weeks). This is the first of 3 routines that will provide you with at least 3 months of moves for a flatter belly and perkier backside. Check back in 3 weeks for the next in the series.
Dr. Brighten has been helping people reach their fitness goals for over 10 years. Schedule a complimentary appointment today to learn more about her approach to fitness & physical health.