I pack a lot into my days, so I adore anything that does double-duty, whether itâ€™s foundation that actually helps my skin instead of just camouflaging blemishes or a watch so bright and fun, itâ€™s practically a bracelet. This multitasking approach applies to my workouts, too. I gravitate toward moves that target more than one spot, so I can get sleek all over in less time than it takes to work my muscles individually.
If youâ€™re similarly pressed for time (and who isnâ€™t these days?), youâ€™ll love these eight simple firmers. Each move works several muscles from different angles for faster results, says Tahneetra Crosby, a 24 Hour Fitness master instructor who not only created them, but models them below (5 months after having a babyâ€”clearly, somethingâ€™s working!). Grab a chair and a set of dumbbells and do two sets of 10 to 12 reps of each move to tighten up all over in just 15 minutes twice a week. Youâ€™ll be firmer for sure! Want to slim down as you sculpt? Sign up for the SELF Challenge, a step-by-step, proven program to help you be your sleekest this spring and all year round.
Works biceps, abs, butt, thighs
(a) Stand with feet together, toes turned out, a weight in each hand in front of thighs, palms forward. Press sole of left foot into inside of right leg, knee out, as you do a biceps curl with right arm.
(b) Step left leg to side into a deep pliÃ© squat as you reverse the biceps curl, so left hand is raised, for one rep. Do 12 reps. Switch sides; repeat.
Tahneetraâ€™s tip: If youâ€™re a little shaky in the one-legged stance, engage your abs to feel instantly steadier.
Works back, shoulders, hips, butt
(a) Lie facedown with arms and legs extended. Lift arms and legs off floor a few inches without arching back; hold for five counts.
(b) Extend arms and legs to sides, forming an X (as shown); hold for five counts. Return to center, then lower to start for one rep. Do 10 reps.
Tahneetraâ€™sÂ tip:Â Fix your gaze on the floor to keep your spine in a neutral position. This simple adjustment protects your neck.
Works chest, abs, hips, butt, hamstrings
(a) Lie faceup with calves and heels on the seat of a sturdy chair; hold a weight in each hand, arms extended to ceiling.
(b) Press through heels as you lift hips off floor until torso forms a straight line from knees to shoulders; at the same time, lower arms out to sides just above floor. Return to start for one rep. Do 12 reps.
Tahneetraâ€™s tip: Squeeze in bonus booty toning by tightening your tush on the liftoff.
Works obliques, abs, butt, thighs
(a) Stand with feet wider than hip-width apart, toes turned out, arms down. Lower into a pliÃ© squat as you bend torso to left, reaching right arm overhead and left arm, palm up, across waist (as shown).
(b) Return to standing as you straighten arms at shoulder height and extend left leg to side at hip level (as shown) for one rep. Do 12 reps. Switch sides; repeat.
Tahneetraâ€™s tip: For the best waist whittling, stay verticalâ€”no bending forward or backward.
Works biceps, obliques, butt, thighs
(a) Stand with feet wide, toes turned out; hold one weight with both hands, elbows bent, in front of chest. Lunge to left side, straightening arms to lower the weight past left knee.
(b) Stand and twist hips and torso to right, left heel raised, as you do a biceps curl. Do 12 reps. Switch sides; repeat.
Tahneetraâ€™s tip: As you twist to the side, flex your calves to chisel your lower legsâ€”a plus for skirt season!
Get your kicks
Works shoulders, biceps, abs, butt, thighs
(a) Lie on right side, legs stacked with right knee bent and right hip lifted, right elbow and forearm supporting body, a weight in left hand on hip. Raise left leg off floor in a straight line at hip height; bend left elbow and bring weight to right shoulder.
(b) Gently kick left leg forward, foot flexed, as you straighten left arm, reaching weight toward toes, for one rep. Do 12 reps. Switch sides; repeat.
Tahneetraâ€™s tip: Save your knees, please. Keep joints soft, not locked, on the kick.
Back in action
Works shoulders, back, triceps, butt, thighs
(a) Kneel on all fours with a weight in right hand; extend left leg straight behind you, toes touching floor. Bend left knee and lift left leg in line with hip, as you bend right elbow and draw weight to rib cage.
(b) Straighten left leg and right arm behind you. Return to all fours. Do 12 reps. Switch sides; repeat.
Tahneetraâ€™s tip: Press shoulder blades together during the rowing movement to buff your upper back.
Works shoulders, triceps, chest, back, butt, thighs
(a) Stand with right hand gripping the back of a sturdy chair, a weight in left hand at side. Bend left knee and raise leg until thigh is almost parallel to floor as you extend left arm to shoulder height (as shown).
(b) Lean torso back as you push and straighten left leg forward, foot flexed, and draw left elbow back, bringing weight to armpit (as shown), for one rep. Do 12 reps. Switch sides; repeat.
Tahneetraâ€™s tip: Donâ€™t be afraid to get funky! Find a rhythm and pick up speed to burn more calories.