Bikini Body Workouts for Women that Work
The plank is the primary move for the 30 day beachbody challenge. Planks are a core stability exercise that sculpt the primary abdominal muscles. Planks are also important for spinal health and reduced lower back pain. In the 4-week challenge, you’ll do planks every workout, sometimes twice. If at any point in the challenge you can’t do the prescribed plank duration, simply take 5-10 second breaks and then resume where you left off.
Set up on the ground or a mat like you’re getting into a push-up position. Instead of keeping straight arms, bend your elbows and lower down onto your forearms. You can interlock both hands and you should be up on your toes. Your body will form a straight line from your ankles to your shoulders – your hips should neither dip down nor lift up. During your plank, brace your abs, squeeze your glutes, and keep both contracted throughout the entire duration of the plank.
This simple tweak to the standard plank makes the move even more difficult. With your feet elevated, your upper body and core have to bear more of the weight.
The execution of the feet-elevated plank is the same as the Plank, but with your toes up on a bench or box. This exercise is also called a decline plank because of the shape of your body. Remember to keep a neutral spine and hips level just like you do in the regular plank.
Side planks can’t be beat for training your obliques and definitely have to be part of your bikini body workout routine. They’re also a powerful stability and balance exercise that will help you protect your spine during twisting. Side planks also effectively target the smaller gluteal muscles, gluteus minimus and gluteus medius, which are often neglected during our trips to the gym but play a pivotal role in hip alignment and stabilization.
Lie on your left side with straight legs. Support your upper body on your left elbow and forearm. Brace your core and raise your hips until your body forms a straight line. Don’t let the hips dip or rise and resist allowing your torso to twist one way or another. Hold for the prescribed amount of time and then switch sides and repeat.
The beach body challenge would not be complete without the Swiss-ball jacknife. This advanced core exercise will strengthen the muscles of your spine while you sculpt a flat stomach. If you struggle with getting into the starting position, try this instead: Drape your body over the ball with your tummy on the ball and your hands and feet on the floor. Then slowly walk your hands forward until you’re in the correct starting position.
Get in the top of a push-up position with straight arms and your shins resting on a Swiss ball. Brace your core and, while keeping a straight back, roll the ball towards your chest by pulling it with your feet. Pause briefly and then roll the ball backward to the starting position. Move slowly to avoid falling off of the ball or losing your balance.
Weighted Russian Twist
This rotational core exercise challenges all of your abdominal muscles, especially the obliques. You’ll also work your lower back and hips. The added resistance will help sculpt lean muscle, giving you a more defined midsection.
Sit on the floor with your feet flat on the floor and bent knees. Hold a weight plate, medicine ball, or the ends of a dumbbell with both hands and your arms straight out in front of you. Lean your torso back to about a 45-degree angle to the floor. Maintain this position, brace your core, and rotate your torso as far to the left as you can, then rotate as far to the right as you can. That’s one rep.
V Ups tone your lower abs, obliques, and hip flexors. Your goal should be to touch your toes at the top of the movement, but if you can’t don’t worry, you’re still benefiting from the exercise.
Lie on the floor on your back with straight legs and arms. Reach your arms back and hold them out straight above the top of your head. In one motion, lift your torso and legs at the same time as if you’re trying to touch your toes. Your body should be in the shape of a V in this position. Slowly lower back down to the starting position.
This deceptively challenging exercise sculpts your entire core and hip flexors. Don’t do these in a rush! You want to lower as slowly as possible and with total control. Don’t let your legs come crashing down. Squeeze your glutes to engage them and protect your lower back.
Lie on the floor on your back with your arms extended straight out to your sides, palms up. Lift your legs straight up in the air, feet together, and with a slight bend in the knees. With a rigid core, slowly lower your legs back down to the floor. Try to take 3-5 seconds to lower the legs. Keep your back firmly planted into the floor; if you end up with an arched lower back, don’t lower your legs as much.
Mountain climbers will tone your tummy while adding a huge cardio boost to the 30 day beachbody challenge. These can be done slowly, but for this challenge, do them fast to really get your heart pumping!
Set up in a push-up position with straight arms. Brace your core, lift your right foot off the ground, and raise your knee up to your chest. Return to the starting position and then repeat with your left leg. Keep alternating until time is up.
Burpees are the total-body conditioning move that you love to hate. They’re included in the 4-week beach body challenge for a fat-blasting boost, cardio blast and to strengthen your upper body and core.
From a standing position, squat down to the floor and put your hands on the ground. Jump your feet back until you’re in the top position of a push-up. Perform a push-up then immediately hop back to the squatting position and then explosively jump up into the air. Repeat and do as many as you can during the prescribed time.
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