5 Classic Exercises for Full-Body Fitness
Get toned without leaving home.
Last month, you made it your resolution to get healthier. That probably meant eating more vegetables, getting better sleep, and — hardest of all — sticking to a fitness routine. It can be overwhelming to create a workout plan, so we understand if that part of your resolution has gone the way of the wind. But here’s some good news: You don’t have to give up trying until 2024. Even better news: You don’t even have to leave your living room to get fit. Here, full-body fitness pro and former Olympian Samantha Clayton shares some workout moves that’ll get you feeling stronger ASAP.
Tighten your tummy with jumping lunges.
Jumping and landing safely during this explosive move activates the entire core to strengthen those ab muscles, says Clayton, vice president of Sports Performance and Fitness Education for Herbalife Nutrition.
To do: Start with your feet together. Take a big step forward with your left foot and bend both knees to lower into a lunge. Explode up off of both feet, switching legs in the air, and land in a lunge with your right leg forward. Continue switching for 20 seconds.
Lift your tush with knee raises.
Pressing up from a lunge into a standing position engages the glutes and hamstrings to help shape the backside, says Clayton. Bonus: The balance at the top calls on the transverse abs to flatten the belly.
To do: Start with your feet together. Take a large step back with your right foot and bend both knees to lower into a lunge. Press off your right foot to balance on your left, lifting your right knee toward your chest. Hold for a moment, then lower back down into the lunge. Do 15 reps; switch sides.
Sculpt your shoulders with plank taps.
Tapping your opposite shoulder with your hand engages the deltoids, triceps, and core to carve a lean, toned upper half. Adds Clayton, “This exercise is all about stability, so it’s really a head-to-toe sculptor.”
To do: Start on your hands and knees. Extend your legs back into a plank with your feet wide. Keeping your hips pointed toward the floor, tap your right shoulder with your left hand, then your left shoulder with your right hand. Alternate for 20 seconds.
Firm your chest with push-ups.
Push-ups utilize the pectorals, deltoids, and serratus anterior muscles, says Clayton, to lift the bosom and eliminate bra bulges.
To do: Start on your hands and knees. Extend your legs back into a plank position in a straight line from your shoulders to your feet (or do push-ups from your knees). Bend your elbows to lower your chest toward the floor, keeping your back straight, then press back up. Do 15 reps.
Tone your thighs with quad extensions.
This move works the calorie-burning quads to slim the thighs. Holding the tabletop position also uses the triceps, glutes, and abs to initiate overall fat burn, explains Clayton.
To do: Sit on the floor with your feet flat on the ground and your hands behind you, fingers pointing toward you. Squeeze your butt to lift up your hips. Without letting them drop, extend your left foot out straight, then lower it back down. Do 15 reps, then switch sides.
A version of this article originally appeared in our print magazine, First For Women.