This exclusive Yahoo Health workout will get your body strong for the summer. (Photo: Getty Images/Chaos)
In recent days, you may have had the following realization: Holy cow, it’s May already. And that means Memorial Day barbecues and summer pool parties are just around the corner.
No matter your shape or size, being healthy is what’s most important — which is good to remember as bare-it-all bikini season approaches. Fortunately, we’ve got just the workout for you — one that doesn’t just involve a heavy calorie burn, but puts an emphasis on building strength — created exclusively for Yahoo Health by certified personal trainer Hannah Davis, CSCS.
The circuit-style workout, which pairs two exercises back-to-back to raise heart rate and build strength, will “really tone you up for the long run — and it’s going to work fast,” Davis, who developed the Operation Bikini Body training program, tells Yahoo Health.
For the best results, make sure to use challenging weights, Davis stresses, while still keeping good form. The last two reps of your final set should feel extremely challenging. Do this routine twice a week, and pair it with high-intensity cardio if you want to boost your fat burn.
How to do this workout: Do each numbered exercise (for example, 1A and 1B) exercise back-to-back as a superset, then rest 30 seconds to 1 minute; perform three supersets before moving on to the next pair of exercises (2A and 2B, and so on.). Do 10 reps of each exercise unless otherwise noted.
Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart. Hold a pair of dumbbells at your thighs, palms facing out. Curl the weights up to your shoulders. Rotate your grip so that your palms face out again. Press the weights up above your shoulders. Reverse the movement. That’s one rep.
1B. Front Squat
Hold two dumbbells with the bell against your shoulders, palms facing in. Bend at your knees and hips and press your butt back to squat at low as you can; stand up. That’s one rep.
2A. Bench Row
Place your left knee and palm on a bench and your right foot on the floor so that your back is parallel to the ground. Hold a dumbbell in your right hand, arm straight, and row it (elbow to the sky) until the dumbbell meets your torso. Lower the weight. That’s one rep. Perform all reps on one side, then switch sides.
2B. Barbell Reverse Lunge
Stand in a squat rack with a barbell placed on your back, your hands holding the barbell securely with palms facing forward. Take a big step back with your right leg. Bend your knees until both knees form 90-degree angles. Keep your torso tall. Press your body up and return your feet to the starting position. That’s one rep. Do all the reps on one leg, then the other.
3A. Elbow Ups
Get onto all fours at the top of a pushup position. One arm at a time, place your elbow and forearm on the ground. Then, one arm at a time, press back up into the top of a pushup position. That’s one rep. Start with 10 reps and work your way up to 20.
3B. Sumo Squat
Stand with your feet wider than shoulder-width apart, toes facing out. Hold two dumbbells in front of your thighs, palms facing in. Keep your torso up and bend your knees to lower your body down as far as you can; keep the dumbbells about one foot apart from each other. Return to standing. That’s one rep.
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