30-Minute Total Body Toner

For some of these exercises you’ll need a pair of light hand weiahts. (The dumbbells pictured are 8-pound weights.) Perform each exercise 8 to 12 times (on each side of the body, where appropriate) or as noted. Work through the exercises with minimal rest in between. Then rest for three to five minutes, and perform the entire routine one more time. To protect your back and make sure you’re working the right muscles, keep your stornach muscles tensed throughout each exercise

1. Lunge

Muscles worked: quadriceps, hamstrings, and buttocks Take a giant step forward with your right foot, planting the foot firmly in front of you. As you step, keeping your upper body straight, bend your right leg at a 90-degree angle. (Don’t extend your knee past your toes.) You’ll and up on the ball of your left foot. Hold the position briefly, then press back up to starting position.

2. Bent row

Muscles worked: back and posterior shoulders For this exercise you’ll need a bench or table. From a standing position, support your upper body with your left arm as shown. Hold a dumbbell in your right hand, with the arm hanging directly below your shoulder. Pull the weight upward to your underarm, keeping your elbow close to your side. Work on pulling the weight from your elbow rather than from your hand, Slowly return to starting position

3. Upright row

Muscles worked: forearms, shoulders, and upper back Start with weights resting on your thighs while you re standing up. Pull weights up toward your chest, Keeping your elbows higher than your hands. Pause and return to starting position

4. Push-up

Muscles worked: chest and arms Start with your arms fully extended, as shown. Lower yourself down until your upper arms are parallel with the floor. Inhale on the way down and exhale as you return to starting position. Keep your abdominal and buttock muscles tensed throughout the exercise.


5. Push press

Muscles worked: shoulders and arms Hold a dumbbell in each hand at shoulder height, as shown. Begin with your knees slightly bent and your abdominal muscles tensed. Press the weights over your head until your arms are almost straight, simultaneously straightening your legs. Return to starting position and repeat.

6. Opposite arm/opposite leg

Muscles worked: lower back, posterior legs, and shoulders While on all fours, raise your right leg and left arm parallel to the floor as shown. Pause for 2 to 3 seconds, return, then immediately repeat on the other side

7. The bicycle

Muscles worked: abdominals Lie on your back with your knees bent and your hands on the sides of your head (not behind your head). Raise your feet and shoulders off the floor. Bring your right knee toward your chest and your left elbow toward your right knee. Return to starting position and repeat on the opposite side. Keep your shoulder blades off the floor throughout the exercise. Perform 16 total repetitions.

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