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As the saying goes, “Work like a beast. Look like a queen”! then better unleash that beast inside you this summer while doing these hardcore exercises!
The goblet squat is a variation on the sumo squat, but without the added difficulty of a barbell. It brings an upper body workout into the squat.
- Hold a dumbbell, kettlebell or medicine ball in your hands, close to your body. Place your legs just wider than shoulder width apart, with your feet pointed slightly outwards.
- Perform a squat as you would with a sumo squat, slowly lowering down, pausing a few inches above the ground and then driving up through your heels with your glutes.
- The further away from your body you hold the weight, the further back you can squat, and the more difficult the exercise will be.
Dumbbell Peck Fly
Peck flys are a great way to hit the centre of your chest.
- Lie down flat on a bench or on the floor with a dumbbell in each hand, resting on your tighs.
- Use your thighs to raise the dumbbells up above you, with your palms facing each other.
- Slowly open your arms, keeping your wrists in the same position and with a slight bend in your elbows.
- Tense your chest to bring the two dumbbells back up in the air and together, holding for 2-3 seconds, concentrating on contracting the centre of your chest muscles. . The movement should only occur in your shoulders, not your elbows. This is one rep.
Squat Dumbbell Oblique Raises
This is a great dynamic movement to hit your whole body whilst working to tone your arms.
- Hold a dumbbell in each hand in front of you. Place your feet shoulder width apart and squat down. This is your starting position.
- Tense your glutes to explode up, using some of that momentum to raise the two dumbbells over your head in front of you. As you do this, twist to the side by tensing your obliques (side abs).
- Slowly reverse the motion, bringing your hands back down and squatting into the start position ready to do the same on the opposite side. This is one rep.
Dumbbell Skull Crusher
Skullcrushers are a great way to get a tricep workout with reasonably light weights.
- Lie flat on a bench or on the floor with your knees bent or over the end of the bench.
- Hold a dumbbell in each hand straight out in front of you.
- Slowly lower the dumbbells towards your face until your elbows are at 90 degrees.
- Tense your triceps, slowly straightening your arms and bringing the dumbbells out in front of you. This is one rep.
Dumbbell Bent Over Rows
- Hold a dumbbell in each hand.
- Bend forward, keeping your spine in a neutral position.
- Tense your core and both lats, raising the dumbbells up towards your torso, holding at the top for 2-3 seconds.
- Slowly lower the dumbbells back down. This is one rep.
Side Dumbbell Raise
Side raises are great at working the middle section of your shoulders.
- Stand with your feet hip-width apart, holding a dumbbell in each hand by your side.
- Tense your core and slowly raise one arm up so it is straight out to your side, with your palm facing the floor. Hold for 2-3 seconds. You should be tensing your shoulder as you do this.
- Slowly lower the dumbbell back to your side.
- Repeat with the other arm. This is one rep.
A great variation on the forward lunge that will help hit additional small muscle groups.
This is performed in a very similar way to a standard lunge.
- Stand with your feet hip width apart. Place your hands on your hips.
- Step backwards with one leg, lowering down on the other until your knee touches (or almost touches) the floor. Your front foot should be directly below your knee.
- Push back off of your back foot and raise up to your initial position. This is one rep.
- Repeat with the other leg.
Plank Glute Kickback
To mix in some glute exercises with your abs, as well as upping the difficulty, try some glute kickbacks.
- Whilst in a standard plank position, tense your glutes one at a time, raising your leg slowly and holding for 2-3 seconds at the top.
- As you’re resting on one less limb, the plank will become more difficult to hold also.
- Repeating once with each leg is one rep for this exercise.
The hover lunge is a killer modification of the lunge. This bodyweight exercise is very challenging, but great for anyone looking to develop their stability or to really push their leg strength and size without weights.
- Stand on one leg, bending your opposite knee and having that foot out behind your body.
- Squeeze your core and your quads. Extend your arms forward as you bend your straight leg. At the same time, extend your opposite leg behind you, keeping your knee bent.
- Lower down until your knee is an inch or two off the ground.
- Slowly straighten the leg you’re standing on, bringing your arms and other leg in at the same time for stability. This is one rep. Take your time, this is a difficult move and stability is difficult!
- Repeat on the other leg.
The wall squat is a great way to remove momentum from your squats, concentrating the exercise on your quads and glutes.
- Stand with your feet hip-width apart, or slightly wider, with your toes slightly pointing outwards. You back should be towards a wall. Make sure your spine is in a straight, neutral position.
- Your feet should be placed a foot or two in front of a wall (so that at the bottom of your squat, your knees are directly above your feet).
- Lean backwards against the wall. Squeeze your leg and core muscles as you lower your body downwards. Lower yourself until your thighs are horizontal to the floor. Hold for 2-3 seconds.
- Continue to squeeze your leg and core muscles are you raise yourself up again. This is one rep.