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Everyone's got 'em: stubborn trouble zones that seem to stick around no matter what you do. Luckily, we've got the plan that will help you get rid of them for good. It's all about challenging yourself -- and your muscles. "Even the best exercises will stop producing results once they become too easy," says Grace De Simone, national group fitness director for Plus One Fitness, based in New York City. "To see real change, you need to increase intensity and add variety on a regular basis."
De Simone's program presents options for every fitness level. Choose the basic move for each problem area (abs, arms, chest, thighs, butt) if you're a beginner; challenge yourself with the intermediate or advanced exercises when you can easily do two sets of 12 to 15 reps. Do these moves two or three times a week, along with 30 to 60 minutes of cardio on most days, and in four to six weeks you'll see inches melt away and sleek, sexy muscles emerge!
Stand with feet hip-width apart, arms at sides. Step left leg one stride back, crossing it behind right leg; bend knees and extend left arm forward and right arm back. Return to start; repeat on opposite sides.Advanced: Jump squat
Originally published in Fitness magazine, May 2005.