How to Tone Up in 20 Minutes

In successful relationships, partners bring out the best in each other. The same can be said of fitness moves. Certain exercises are more effective when paired up than when done alone. "Doing two moves at the same time—each targeting an opposing or unrelated muscle group—allows you to train harder without exhausting a single group too quickly," says certified personal trainer Katrina Hodgson, CEO and cofounder of ToneItUp.com and Tone It Up fitness studio in Los Angeles, who created this workout. "This method of training also boosts total-body tone and helps sidestep muscular imbalances that can lead to injuries." And the best part: They get you out of the gym in half the time. What's not to love?

The Workout


Complete this 20-minute circuit three times a week on nonconsecutive days. All you need is a pair of dumbbells (try five to eight pounds) and a stability ball. Go from one exercise to the next without resting in between. When you've completed all eight moves, rest for one to two minutes, then repeat the circuit three more times. (If you're really in a pinch, just do as many sets as you can.)


Reverse Lunge with Rotation and Biceps Curl

Targets biceps, core, obliques, quads, hamstrings, and glutes



Hold dumbbells at your sides and stand with your feet hip-width apart (a). Step back with your left foot, and bend both knees to lower your body until your right knee is bent at least 90 degrees. At the same time, rotate your upper body toward your right leg and curl the dumbbells to your chest (b). Reverse the movement by lowering the weights and rotating your chest to face front, then return to standing. That's one rep. Do 15, then repeat on the opposite side.

Deadlift to High Pull

Targets shoulders, upper back, hamstrings, and glutes



Hold dumbbells in front of you, palms facing your thighs, and stand with your feet hip-width apart, knees slightly bent (a). Keeping your back slightly arched and your core engaged, hinge forward at the hips and slowly lower your torso until it's almost parallel to the floor (b). Pause, then squeeze your glutes and push your hips forward to return to standing, pulling the dumbbells up to your chest by bending your elbows out to the sides and raising your forearms (c). Return to the starting position. That's one rep. Do 15.

 
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