Source: Xo The Girls Swim Blog

Xo The Girls Swim Blog Bikini Season Is Coming!!!!

With the holidays over and winter starting to settle in, a lot of your thoughts might to turning to summer and the beach weather it will bring. But your brain might also be sending thoughts about the weight we all inevitably gain--and how you're going to lose the unwanted poundage.There are a lot of different fad diets, crazy exercise machines, and ideas out on the internet about how to lose weight and get fit for the coming bikini season. One article will tell you not to eat a certain food, while another will say the exact opposite. Diet pills have all sorts of unknown side effects and unproven results. The best way to get rid of the weight you don't want? Exercise. I found a simple but effective routine to start you off with and I'll explain each of the ten exercises down below! 1. Single Leg DeadliftHOW TO: Grab a pair of dumbbells and stand on your left foot. Lift your right foot behind you and bend your knee so your right lower leg is parallel to the floor. Bend forward at your hips, and slowly lower your body as far as you can. Pause, then push your body back to the starting position. As you come up, think about using your glutes to push your hips forward instead of lifting from your back. Keep core engaged and chest up during the entire movement.WHAT IT DOES: Lifts and tones glutes and activates the entire core2. Side Plank HOW TO: Lie on your left side with your knees straight. Prop your upper body up on your left elbow and forearm. Raise your hips until your body forms a straight line from your ankles to your shoulders. Hold this position for 30 seconds. Turn around so that you're lying on your right side and repeat.WHAT IT DOES: Helps tighten and shrink waistline, works deep ab muscles that many exercises don't reach.3. Push UpHOW TO: Get down on all fours and place your hands on the floor so that they're slightly wider than and in line with your shoulders, feet close together. Lower your body until your chest nearly touches the floor and then push yourself back to the starting position. Make sure to keep your hips lifted and your core braced the entire time.WHAT IT DOES: Works entire body and tightens chest muscles4. Second Position PliesHOW TO: Stand with feet wider than shoulder-width apart, toes turned out slightly. Lower your body down by bending your knees until your thighs are parallel with the floor. Bring arms overhead and shoulders down and back. Pause, then slowly push yourself back up to the starting position.WHAT IT DOES: Sculpts inner thighs, tones the sides of the butt for leaner legs5. Cardio IntervalsHOW TO: Choose any piece of cardio equipment (elliptical, jump rope, treadmill, bike, etc) and repeat the following pattern 10 times total:3 minutes at 50 percent of your maximum effort20 seconds at 75 percent of your maximum effort10 seconds at your absolute maximum effortWHAT IT DOES: By incorporating high-intensity interval training (HIT) into your workout routine you'll burn more calories ina shorter amount of time.6. Triceps ExtensionHOW TO: Come into a lunge position, with your back heel on the ground. Lean over your front bent knee as your lift your arm straight up by your side, top of the weight facing the ceiling. Lift and lower the 2-3 pound weight about an inch (30 times each side).WHAT IT DOES: TOnes the backs of the shoulders and triceps7. StepupsHOW TO: Stand in front of a bench or step and place your left foot firmly on the step. Press your left foot into the step and push your body up until your left leg is straight. Lower your body back down until your right foot touches the floor and repeat. Keep your chest up and core engaged the entire time. Keep your weight balanced evenly, not leaning too far forward or too far back.WHAT IT DOES: Targets the muscles of your butt and hamstrings to create leaner, stronger legs and a tighter, lifted rear. They also work the quadriceps.8. BridgeHOW TO: Lie faceup on the floor with your knees bent and your feet flat on the floor. Raise your hips so your body forms as straight line from your shoulders to your knees. Pause in the up position, then lower your body back to the starting position.WHAT IT DOES: Helps create a perfectly rounded butt and keeps yout back healthy and pain free.9. Plank With Arm RaiseHOW TO: Start to get into a pushup position, but bend your elbows and rest your weight on your forearms instead of on your hands. Your body should form a straight line from your shoulders to your ankles. Brace your core and maintain your hip placement as you lift your right arm straight out in front of you. Draw your shoulder blades down and back as you lift your arms. Hold the position for 5-10 seconds and then switch arms.WHAT IT DOES: Improves posture and core strength, which helps you to feel better, look taller, and feel more confident.`10. Shoulder StandHOW TO: Lie down on your back and lift your legs and hips off the ground, bringing your legs up over your head until your toes touch the floor behind you. Place your hands behind your back and extend legs straight in the air, creating a straight line from shoulders to ankles. Keep your neck relaxed as your hold the shoulder stand. Try to hold it for at least one minute and then slowly come out of it. (Note: If you need help fell free to use a wall to help you balance.)WHAT IT DOES: Inversion yoga postures are great for helping to reduce the appearance of cellulite.For a quick, total-body tone up, pick five of the moves and do 3 sets of each exercise 10 times (unless otherwise noted below). Move as fast as possible between moves for maximum calorie burn.The next day, do the other five exercises. You can incorporate a few sets of cardio intervals into the total-body training session or do it separately for a longer period of time.

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