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Shape Up with a Quickie Resistance Band Workout

  • Circle Crunch

    What you'll need: A resistance band ($5, spri.com)

    Targets: Abs and outer thighs

    • Tie band into a loop and wrap it around thighs, just above knees. Lie faceup on floor with hands behind head, elbows out, legs lifted, and knees bent 90 degrees.
    • Crunch up, then circle upper body in a counterclockwise direction while pressing thighs outward against band.
    • Do 10 circles, without lowering. Return to start; switch directions and repeat.
     
  • Bow and Arrow Pull

    Targets: Back, arms, abs, and legs

    • Stand with feet together, holding one end of looped band in each hand. Extend arms in front of you at shoulder level, palms facing each other.
    • Lunge back with right leg, bending both knees 90 degrees, and, keeping left arm extended, drive right elbow straight behind you so that band is pulled tight and upper body rotates to right.
    • Return to start. Switch sides; repeat to complete 1 rep. l Do 10 reps.
  • Resist-a-Chop

    Targets: Abs, obliques, hips, butt, and legs

    • Wrap looped band around calves. Stand with left leg in front of right. Clasp hands and extend arms overhead.
    • Squat slightly while bringing arms down and across body to side of right hip, rotating upper body to right.
     
  • Loop Lift

    Targets: Shoulders, abs, butt, and legs

    • Wrap looped band around calves. Stand with feet hip-width apart, right hand on hip.
    • Squat, keeping knees behind toes, and touch left fingertips to floor by left foot.
  • Back Zip

    Targets: Shoulders, back, arms, abs, and butt

    • Wrap looped band around wrists. Stand with legs and heels together, feet pointed out to sides 45 degrees. Extend arms in front of you at shoulder level, elbows slightly bent out to sides.
    • Squeeze glutes as you press arms out to sides, stretching band as far as you can while keeping shoulders down. Hold for 1 count.
    • Return to start. Do 15 reps.

    Originally published in FITNESS magazine, November/December 2009.

     
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