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Sculpt Your Abs Without Doing a Single Sit-Up

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All you need are dumbbells and a resistance band to do these ab-hardening moves.

The trick: add balance moves to your routine. You'll strengthen your core, improve your posture, and help prevent injuries. Do these exercises from Michelle Dozois, owner of Breakthru Fitness in Pasadena, California, three times a week. Keep your abs tight throughout each move.

1. Plank with Shoulder Clock

Wrap a resistance band around both hands and get into a full push-up position. Reach right arm forward, then out to side, then back toward your right thigh, lowering to center each time. Do complete series twice per side, 3 sets total.

2. Reverse Lunge with Press

Stand holding a dumbbell in each hand, weights at shoulder height, palms forward. Lunge back with right leg, then lift right knee toward your chest while pressing weights over your head. Lower weights back to shoulders as you step back into the lunge. Repeat 15 times; switch legs.

3. One-Arm Dumbbell Chest Press

Lie faceup with head and shoulders on a stability ball or bench, knees bent, feet on floor. Hold a dumbbell in your right hand above your shoulder, palm facing forward. Slowly bend your elbow and lower the weight out to side until elbow is bent 90 degrees. Press the weight back up to starting position. Be careful not to let the elbow drop below your shoulder on the way down. Perform 15 reps on right arm; switch sides and repeat.

Originally published in FITNESS magazine, December 2006.


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