When it comes to long-term weight loss and muscle definition, even the hardcore cardio lover would tell you that strength training takes the cake. And today, we are sharing with you another set of simple bodyweight strength exercises that will enable you to flaunt a sexy body to complement with that pretty face of yours in no time!
Lunges are another easy-to-do exercise that you can perform conveniently anytime and anywhere! You can do some quick lunges to vent your frustration when your favourite local drama show goes on an abrupt intermission break just before something juicy is about to happen or you can have some fun with your toddlers and watch them squeal gleefully by holding them firmly in your hands when executing the lunges. Whenever someone asks us for advice on how to achieve the perfect sand bun, we will ask them, apart from squatting, whether do they even lunge. This is because lunges work your glutes and firm your buns, rewarding you with a shapelier and rounder booty. They also work your quads, hamstrings and calves, and have been shown to be an excellent conditioning exercise for a good number of sporting activities.
Don’t believe us? Give it a try yourself and see if it works! Start off in a relaxed standing position with your arms by your sides and feet close together. Next, lift your chest up, lock your back and tighten your abs before taking a large step forward with your right foot. As soon as the ball of your right foot touches the floor, bend both your legs so that both knees form a 90-degree angle. Your trailing knee should be pointing towards the floor now and your hind legs should be on its toes. Pause in this position for a moment before pushing yourself back to the starting position. Repeat the same steps with your left leg. Keep alternating between your left and right leg and aim to complete around ten to twelve reps of lunges on each leg. Work your way up to three sets, giving yourself about ninety seconds of rest time in between sets. If you feel like you need to challenge yourself, grab a pair of weighted dumbbells for that extra bit of resistance.
Full Body Roll-Ups
The full body roll up is not only a fun workout to execute, but it is also labelled as the mother of mat Pilates exercises, and for good reason. Do you know that a single Pilates full body roll up is equivalent to five sit-ups and is said to be more effective than attempting to perform a multitude of pointless and monotonous crunches? Quite unsurprising really, considering the fact that many who attempt the crunches execute them with poor form and technique, and as a result, do not gain any benefit from it since crunches are an isolation exercise.
So, why not ditch the crunches and attempt the full body roll-ups for a change? Start off by lying face up on a mat or soft ground with your arms extended straight overhead. Get up to speed with your breathing, inhaling and exhaling in a homogenise rhythm. With your arm extended and fingers still pointing towards the sky, take a deep breathe in before exhaling and rolling up into a C-like curve, lifting your body up and reaching for the tip of your toes. Pause for a second or two before inhaling and lowering yourself slowly back as you uncurl yourself one vertebra at a time, going back into that C-like curve and finally resting your back onto the mat.
The idea is to keep both your feet planted firmly on the ground and not budge from its position at any point of time. This is to ensure that you are utilising only your core muscles at all times during the entire movement. It is important to use only your abs and back for the lifting and lowering of your body up and down the mat in a graceful manner and avoid attempting to use your glutes and hip flexors to help you with the movement. That is counted as cheating, and as we have pointed out before, cheaters never win. Should you find yourself experiencing some trouble or resistance keeping both your heels firmly planted on the ground, get your spouse or kids to hold your legs firmly down by the ankles. Alternatively, if there isn’t anyone present to help you, you can hook your feet underneath your sofa or use a resistance band around your feet and firmly grasp the handles with both your hands. If all else fails, it is ok to bend your knees slightly as you come up, as long as your heels stay put on the ground.
Try the full body roll-ups and see if it works for you! Start off with three sets of ten repetitions and slowly work your way up the reps and sets as you progress.
Read more: Accelerate Your Weight Loss with These Exercises: Part 1.