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Fight the Flab: The Animal Flow Workout

A no-equipment workout with cardio and toning exercises from the creator of the Animal Flow workout class at Equinox Fitness Clubs.

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Jason Todd
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About This Workout

Firm up with this fresh no-equipment workout that blasts even hard-to-reach bulges in record time. "You can really tone all those forgotten muscles by mimicking certain primal movements," says Mike Fitch, the creator of the hot new Animal Flow class at Equinox Fitness Clubs in New York City. The super-low, thigh-sculpting squats and ab-chiseling crawls may look straight out of a safari, but try them twice a week this month and you'll go wild for the results.

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Vertical Frog Jump

Targets back, butt, and quads

  • Stand with feet slightly wider than shoulder-width apart, arms by sides.
  • Lower into a deep squat and place palms on floor between feet.
  • Jump as high as you can and extend arms overhead.
  • Land softly in a squat, placing hands on floor. Return to standing.
  • Do 2 sets of 12 reps.

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Beast Reach

Targets shoulders, triceps, abs, hips, butt, and legs

  • Stand with feet hip-width apart and crouch down, stretching arms forward to plant palms on floor in front of you, head between arms.
  • Extend legs to bring torso forward until shoulders are aligned over hands in full plank position; simultaneously lift bent right knee to outside of right elbow.
  • Keeping palms planted, reverse motion back to crouch position and repeat with left leg.
  • Do 2 sets of 12 reps, alternating legs.

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Sideways-Traveling Primate

Targets shoulders, abs, hips, and quads

  • Stand with feet hip-width apart and toes out; crouch down, placing palms on floor to right of body (left hand by right foot).
  • Keeping palms planted throughout, jump feet to right; land with left foot between hands, left knee bent, and right leg straight. Shift hips to right to reset position (left leg straightens and right knee bends), and place palms on floor outside of right foot to complete 1 rep.
  • Do 6 reps; switch directions and repeat. Do 2 sets.

Make it easier: Instead of jumping, side-shuffle to right.

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Stork Seesaw

Targets back, abs, hips, butt, quads, and hamstrings

  • Stand with feet together and clasp arms behind back. Lift right knee forward to hip level, foot flexed.
  • Balancing on left leg, squat slightly and hinge forward from hips until back is nearly parallel to floor and right heel is in line with your back.
  • Return to upright stork stance; repeat. Do 12 reps; switch legs and repeat. Do 2 sets.

Make it easier: Place hands on hips.

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Crab Flip

Targets back, triceps, butt, and hamstrings

  • Sit on floor with knees bent, feet flat, and place palms on floor behind you, fingers pointing away from body. Lift butt 1 or 2 inches off floor.
  • Raise right arm overhead as you lift hips off floor as high as possible, arching your back.
  • Lower hips toward floor and place right hand down, keeping butt lifted. Repeat with left arm.
  • Do 2 sets of 12 reps, alternating sides.

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Ape Squat

Targets shoulders, back, triceps, abs, butt, quads, and calves

  • Stand with feet hip-width apart, toes pointed out, and lower into a deep squat, bending knees out to sides; reach arms between knees toward floor with palms facing out.
  • Maintaining crouch throughout, lift heels off floor and straighten torso as you raise arms out to sides (rotate wrists so that palms face up) and squeeze shoulder blades together.
  • Lower arms and heels to start position.
  • Do 2 sets of 12 reps.

Originally published in FITNESS magazine, January 2013.

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