By Fred De Vito
It's that time of the year: you shed your winter layers and suddenly notice your muscles again - or rather, the lack thereof! The tee shirts and shorts aren't looking quite as you'd like (and forget about that swimsuit). No need to panic - there's still time to get in shape for summer…but you need to start now!
Single Leg Pulse
No more procrastinating. From this moment forward, every morsel of food that you consume counts as calories going in - and every step that you consciously take (forgoing the escalator for the stairs) counts as calories going out. At the end of the day, it's simple math: over consume and you gain weight. Over exert and you lose weight. Once you shift to choosing your calories wisely, it's time to implement a series of strengthening and toning exercises. I want to share some of the most fun, challenging, and muscle-burning moves from our Core Fusion Boot Camp class at exhale (also found on the Core Fusion Boot Camp DVD). This series will jump start your fitness routine and get you on the path of exerting energy through challenging movements. Your muscles will start to become stronger and in the process become shapelier. Lean muscle is what burns those calories. So get started today! Core Fusion Boot Camp Workout for Bikini Blaster Results!
You can do this Core Fusion Boot Camp Workout 2 to 3 times per week. The classes use a Core Ball, but you can switch in any ball-volleyball, soccer ball, kickball, beach ball-that you have available. It just needs to be able to support your bodyweight for pushups. You'll also need a 5-to-8 pound dumbbell for the lifting moves.
Single Leg Pulse Targets: Shoulders, abs, butt, legs Stand on right leg with left leg held out in front of you. Hold the ball or weight with arms extended directly in front of you at chest height. Bend right leg slightly lowering your body 2-3 inches, then straighten the leg and return to standing. Do 20 pulses in this style. Switch legs and repeat.
Single Leg Squat and Leap
Single Leg Squat and Leap Targets: Shoulders, obliques, butt, legs Stand with your legs wider than shoulder width, toes turned out slightly. Hold the ball or weight overhead slightly in front of your forehead, elbows partially bent. Squat down until you can touch the ball to the floor in between your feet - then spring up to the right, extending the ball over head as the left foot leaves the floor. Return the ball to the floor between your feet and then spring up to the left, extending the ball overhead until the right foot leaves the floor. Twist from your trunk as you leap to activate the oblique abdominal muscles. Do 10 reps. Repeat a second set.
Uneven Pushup Targets: Chest, triceps, abs
Get in full pushup position with your right palm on the ground and your left palm on top of the ball. Make sure your left elbow is directly over your left wrist - the body should form a straight line from head to heels. (Beginners can do a modified pushup position with knees on the ground.) Bend elbows and lower yourself toward the ground - then straighten arms and return to starting position. Do 10 reps. Switch sides, repeat. Oblique Trunk Twister with weights in the Curl Position Targets: the full abdominal wall with emphasis on the obliques, the inner thighs.
Start by sitting on the ground with knees bent and feet flat on the floor. Place the ball between your inner-thighs and hold there. Holding a 2-pound weight in each hand, roll slowly down to your waist, vertebrae by vertebrae. Bring fists together near the breast bone. Rotate trunk from side to side to work the oblique muscles. Do 10 reps. Repeat 2 sets. Pretzel Position Targets chest, biceps, abs, hips, butt
Sit on ground with left knee bent in front of your left hip, right knee bent and positioned behind your right hip. Rotate right hip forward so that the right ankle is higher than the right knee. Place ball on ground in front of your left leg to get started for the basic position. The next, more advanced level is to press into ball with palms at chest level, shoulders down, elbows out. Lift bent right leg a few inches off ground, then press right leg back. Be sure to keep the right ankle higher than the knee and the right knee behind the right hip. If you can't lift the right knee in the beginning, just slide it along the floor, working to keep the ankle higher than the knee. Do 2 sets of push backs. A second variation is to keep the same position and lift the right knee up just enough to clear the floor. Do 2 sets of 20 lifts. Switch legs in between sets.