The 15-Minute Anytime, Anywhere Workout

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You don’t need a pricey new fitness class to shake up your routine. Work out any time, in any place, with this total-body plan—which uses nothing but a household hand towel—created by Melissa Paris, a New York City–based personal trainer. “The key to seeing continued results and avoiding plateaus is to keep challenging your body in different ways, whether that’s with new moves, a new environment, or new equipment,” says Paris. “Incorporating a towel into your routine is a no-cost and efficient way to take your workout to the next level.”

That’s because with every exercise, the towel provides either friction (as in the lateral lunge) or tension (as in the seated oblique twist) to help engage muscles that would otherwise be missing the action.

So rather than using the towel to dry off, use it to break a sweat. Complete the exercises as instructed, moving from one to the next with little or no rest in between. Stop for 30 to 60 seconds at the end (if needed), then repeat up to two more times.

Innovate your workouts with Shape-Up Shortcutsand get a smoking-hot body in shorter workouts!

MOVE 1Leg Curl
Leg Curl
Beth Bischoff

Lie faceup on the floor, knees bent and both heels on a towel; lift your hips until your body forms a straight line from knees to shoulders (a). Slide your heels away from you as far as you can without dropping your hips (b). Pause, then return to start. That’s one rep. Do 15.

MOVE 2Seated Oblique Twist
Seated Oblique Twist
Beth Bischoff

Sit on the floor and hold the towel taut between your hands, arms straight and extended at shoulder height; lean back and raise your feet about a foot off the floor, keeping your core tight and knees bent (a). Pull the right end of the towel toward the floor, rotating your shoulders and torso (b). Pause, then rotate back to center and repeat on the other side. That’s one rep. Do 20.

MOVE 3Lateral Lunge
Lateral Lunge
Beth Bischoff

Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, hands on hips, and your right foot on a towel (a). Bend your left knee and push your hips back as you slide your right foot out to the side as far as you can (b). Pause, then pull that foot back to start. That’s one rep. Do 15, then switch sides and repeat.

MOVE 4Superman Press
Superman Press
Beth Bischoff

Lie facedown on the floor, chest lifted, and hold a towel taut between your hands in front of your shoulders, elbows bent (a). Press the towel away from you until your arms are straight (b). Return to start. That’s one rep. Do 20.

PUBLISHED: OCTOBER 14, 2013   |   BY CAITLIN CARLSON

Women’s Health Magazine

Absolute Power Workout

Six turbo toners designed by Alexandra White, a co owner of Jumping Frog Pilates in Tenafly, NJ.

So grab your yoga mat and do the circuit twice, three alternating days a week!

Clamp (Targets back, abs, obliques, inner and outer thighs)

  1. Lie face up on the floor with your arms and legs extended upward; lift head, neck and shoulders off floor
  2. Simultaneously lower arms out to sides and open legs 45 degrees, keeping shoulders and chest lifted throughout
  3. Return to start, squeezing palms together and legs together
  4. Do 10 to 12 reps

Sprinkler (Targets back, abs and obliques)

  1. Sit on floor with legs extended, thighs together and feet flexed; tilt torso back 45 degrees and extend arms out to sides, palms facing forward
  2. Rotate torso to right, sweeping left arm across body to tap left palm to right palm
  3. Return to start, then repeat to left to complete 1 rep
  4. Do 10 to 12 reps

Skinny Dip (Targets back, abs, obliques, butt)

  1. Lie on floor on left side, propped up on left forearm, knees bent 90 degrees and toes pointed behind you: extend right arm over head
  2. Lift hips off floor; then raise bent right leg a few feet.  Make it easier: keep knees together
  3. Keeping right leg lifted, dip hip to floor
  4. Do 10 to 12 reps, switch sides and repeat

Wiper Plank (Targets back, abs, butt and legs)

  1. Start on floor in plank position, balancing on forearms and toes, elbows directly under shoulders.  Clasp hands together
  2. Lift right leg behind you as high as you can, then lower it without touching toes to the floor and bring it out to the right side.
  3. Return right leg to center then repeat without touching toes to the floor
  4. Do 10 to 12 reps

Twister (Targets shoulders, back, abs, obliques and hamstrings)

  1. Stand with feet hip width apart, elbows bent out to sides and hands touching behind head, keeping back flat, hinge forward from hips so that upper body is parallel to floor.
  2. Rotate torso to face right.  Pause, return to center, pause again, then rotate to the left to complete 1 rep
  3. Do 10 to 12 reps

Jackknife (Targets shoulder, back, abs, obliques, legs)

  1. Stand with feet shoulder width apart, arms extended overhead, lift right leg about a foot off floor, toes pointed
  2. Hinge forward from hips and reach hands to toes
  3. Keeping right foot lifted and back flat throughout, straighten up  to standing position as you lift arms overhead, then place right foot on the floor.
  4. Switch sides and repeat.  Do 10 to 12 reps, alternating sides

Fitness Magazine
September 2012

    If You Have 15 Minutes…(part two)

    You can target your biggest trouble zone. Fifteen minutes is just enough time to effectively work your lower body, burning approximitly 96 calories.

    Complete all of the Butt and Leg exercises using a pair of 5 to 10 pound dumbbells, working this muscle group twice a week. Perform this as a circuit, doing 3 sets.

    1. Single Leg Squat:  Stand facing away from a chair, holding dumbbells at sides.  Step forward about 2 feet.  Place top of right foot on seat and slowly bend left knee into a squat, being sure not to let knee go past toes.  Stand back up.  Do 12 reps, squat one more time with left leg and hold in down position for about 20 seconds.  Switch legs, repeat.
    2. Wall Sit with Body Weight:  Stand with your back and butt against the wall feet hip width apart and about one foot from wall.  Bend knees and slide body down wall until knees are almost at 90 degrees and in line with ankles.  Hold for 30 seconds, do 3 reps.
    3. Single Leg Deadlift:  Stand with feet together, dumbbells at sides.  Lift right foot off floor and lean forward from hips, keeping abds engaged and back straight, until weights are in line with left shin.  Pull through glutes to lift body back up,  Do 12 reps, lean forward one more time and hold in down position for 20 seconds.  Switch legs, repeat.