20 Minute Workout: Core and More
A fitness model and Equinox instructor's moves for an abbreviated abdominal-focused session.
While you can carve a tantalizingly toned body in less than a half hour, we’re here to tell you what you likely already know: To reap the rewards — increased calorie burn, strength, power, blissful endorphin high — truncated workouts must be insanely intense. But it may be worth the effort, since, according to a recent review of research published in the Journal of Physiology, shorter, more vigorous sessions are not only more effective than endurance training in terms of strength building and calorie burning, but they also may be the most efficient way to train elite athletes. Sold. So, we asked a team of Equinox trainers and group fitness instructors what they would do if they were given just 20 minutes to have at it. Here is the next in the series. Check back each Wednesday for a new routine:
The Pro: Christine Bullock, Certified Pilates, Group Fitness Instructor (Yoga, Classical Pilates Mat, Barre Burn, and Extreme Pilates Challenge/ Sports Core Instructor)
The Clubs: South Bay, Los Angeles
The Workout: Six do-anywhere moves that engage abs while strengthening the entire body.
Start in push-up position. Bend elbows and lower body, shifting weight from hands to forearms. Engage abs as body forms a straight line. Hold for 30 seconds.
MAKE IT HARDER: From plank, rotate torso and lower right hip to touch the ground. Return to plank. Rotate waist and lower left hip to touch the ground. Repeat for final 30 seconds.
Sit with legs extended, arms behind body, palms down, fingers forward. Press up, lifting hips toward ceiling so torso forms a straight line from shoulders to heels. Keep hips raised, bend elbows until upper arms are parallel to floor, then press back up. Repeat for one minute.
V-Sit-up with Bicep Curl
Sit with a dumbbell in each hand, elbows bent, weights at shoulders. Lean back so torso forms a 45-degree angle, bring lower legs parallel to the floor, keeping knees bent. Engage core and extend arms to lower dumbbells toward floor. Curl biceps to shoulders again. Repeat for one minute.
Front Loaded Lunge With Overhead Press
Hold a dumbbell in each hand, right foot on stability ball. Bend left knee and lower hips toward floor while lengthening right leg and pressing ball away. Press dumbbells overhead with elbows wide, keeping spine long. Return to start. Repeat for 30 seconds. Switch legs and repeat for 30 seconds.
Cross right leg behind left leg, bending left knee into a half-squat position. Reach right fingertips to floor outside the front leg. Hop a few feet directly to the right, switching the position of legs and arms. Alternate right-to-left jumps for 60 seconds.
Single Leg Deadlift
Stand with feet hip-width apart, knees slightly bent, holding dumbbells in front of body, palms facing thighs. Arch back slightly and engage core, then hinge forward at the hips, slowly lowering torso until almost parallel to the floor, arms hanging straight. Pause and squeeze glutes, pushing hips forward to return to standing while pulling the dumbbells to chest, bending elbows to the side. Return to start. Repeat for 60 seconds.
Want more? Try this quickie Pilates session.
Photography by Alex Ardenti for Alpha Pro