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5 Exercises to Get Fit for Summer

May 28, 2013

This post was written by Tiana Yom

Now that Memorial Day has passed, you can break out the white pants and bathing suits – summer is coming! Sure you’re ready for warmer temps, but is your body ready for clothes that reveal more skin than wool sweaters and corduroy pants?

Here are five quick ways to sculpt sexy fit arms and legs for the summer without dumbbells, resistance bands, or any other gym equipment. These exercises can be done anywhere and anytime using your own body for resistance!

1. Push-ups

Kneel and plant your hands on the floor a little wider than shoulder-width apart. Extend your legs backward and form a perfect plank from your neck to your heels. Keep your core engaged throughout to stabilize your body and maintain your plank form. Bend at the elbows to lower yourself as you inhale. Lower until your face hovers above the floor all while maintaining your plank form. Contract your triceps and pectorals and push yourself back up to your starting position as you exhale.

Do two to three sets of eight to 12 repetitions.

2. Triceps Dips

Triceps dips will firm up your triceps, which are the muscles behind your arms.

Sit on a stable chair or bench with your legs hip-width apart, feet firmly grounded on the floor and your hands behind you shoulder-width apart. Slower lower your body off the chair by bending your elbows until your arms are at 90 degrees, keeping your back close to the bench. Lift your body up by straightening your arms, keeping a little bend at the elbow to work the triceps muscles and keep stress off your wrists.

Start with five repetitions, gradually increasing to 10.

3. Arm Circles

Performing arm circles will tone, strengthen, and define your arms.

Stand up straight with your feet shoulder-width apart. Extend your arms out to the sides and rotate them forward in large, controlled circles. Contract the muscles of your arms while circling them.

Start with 10 circles forward and 10 circles backward. Gradually increase to 20 circles in each direction.

4. Downward Facing Dog 

Stretch and strengthen your body at the same time with this popular yoga move!

Begin on your hands and knees. Your wrists should be underneath your shoulders, and your knees underneath your hips. Inhale as you tuck your toes under your heels. Then exhale to lift your hips, coming into an upside down “V” shape called Downward Facing Dog. Spread your fingers wide and create a straight line between your middle fingers and elbows. Work on straightening your legs and lowering your heels toward the ground. Your heels should be slightly wider than your toes, so the outside edges of your feet are parallel with the outside edges of your mat. Relax your head between your arms, and direct your gaze through your legs or up toward your belly button.

Work on holding for five breaths.

5. Squats

I’ve mentioned Squats before in a previous Nutritioulicious post, Got 10 minutes. Squats are definitely worth mentioning again as they work your quadriceps, hamstrings, glutes, calves and core muscles, and can help to build lower body muscle mass.

Stand up straight with your feet shoulder-width apart or slightly wider. Extend your hands straight out in front of you to help keep your balance. Squat down as though you are sitting in a chair, being sure to keep your back straight (not arched) and your head facing forward as your upper body bends forward a bit. Breathe out as you lower down so your thighs are as parallel to the floor as possible, with your knees over your ankles. Press your weight back into your heels. Keep your body tight, and inhale as you push through your heels to bring yourself back to the starting position.

Do two to three sets of ten repetitions.

Remember to alternate these exercises with core exercises to get maximum results!

Are you fit for summer?

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