Tone Your Entire Body With This 1 Move

Tone Your Entire Body With This 1 Move

Short on time? Don’t skip the strength-training session u2014 get playful with the plank! By doing multitasking variations of this basic move| you can target your arms| back| core| legs| and booty to chisel out a stronger| more toned you.

| Plank Jacks

Take your jumping jacks to the floor for this plank variation that not only works your arms| core| and lower body| it’ll also get your heart pumping.

  • Begin in plank position with your feet together. Keep your upper body stable and engage your abs.
  • Begin doing jumping jacks with your legs. Hop them wide| then hop them together. Jump as quickly as you want.
  • Do a total of 30 jumping jacks| which counts as one set. Then complete two more sets.

| Two-Point Plank

This exercise might remind you of the quadruped (a crunchless ab exercise) on crack. It’s superhard| but the payoff is a stable torso.

  • Start in a plank position. Cheat your right leg toward your center line| and lift your left leg off the ground so your heel is even with your pelvis.
  • Keeping your torso steady| reach your right arm forward. Really brace through the abs by pulling your navel to your spine. Hold this position for 10 seconds.
  • Keeping your torso stable| bring your right elbow to your left knee under your body. Do not round your back or twist your spine| and keep your pelvis down. Then reach the arm and leg out and away from each other. This counts as one rep.
  • Do three sets of five to seven reps on each side.

| Elbow Plank

This is a killer move for your core| legs| and upper body. When holding elbow plank| be sure your shoulders are stacked over your elbows and your body is in one straight line.

  • Start on the floor| resting on your forearms and knees.
  • Step your feet out one at a time| coming into a plank position.
  • Contract your abs to prevent your booty from sticking up or sinking. Your spine should be parallel to the floor| with your abs pulling toward the ceiling.
  • Hold 30 seconds| and work your way up to one minute as you get stronger.

| Elbow Plank With Donkey Kick

Elbow plank is tough enough| but make it even more challenging by adding a booty-strengthening donkey kick.

  • From elbow plank position| bend your right knee| flex your heel| and press your foot up toward the ceiling without moving your pelvis. Lower the bent leg slightly| and repeat for a total of 15 to 20 repetitions. Then switch sides. Do three sets on each leg.

| Up-Down Plank

Strengthen your arms| upper back| and core with this challenging exercise called up-down plank.

  • Come into plank position with your arms and legs straight.
  • Beginning with the right side first| lower your elbow to the floor where your hand was. Then lower your left elbow to the floor where your left hand was (now you are in elbow plank| with your forearms parallel).
  • Then come back into the starting plank position onto your right hand and then back onto your left. This completes one rep.
  • Perform 10 reps starting with your right elbow. Then reverse directions by bringing your left elbow down first for an additional 10 reps.

| Side Plank Leg Lift

This variation of plank called side plank leg lift targets your shoulders| waist| abs| back| outer thighs| and glutes.

  • Place your right elbow on the ground. Extend both legs out so that your body is in one straight line and you’re balancing on the outside edge of your right foot.
  • Flex both feet if you can| and either rest your top hand on your upper hip or extend it in the air. Keeping your spine lengthened and your abs engaged| lift your left leg up just higher than your top hip. Then slowly lower it back to your bottom leg.
  • Do three sets of 15 to 20 repetitions on each side.

| Easy Knee-Tuck Crunches

Capitalize on the instability of an exercise ball| and try the tuck crunch. This move strengthens your core while toning your arms| chest| shoulders| and lower abs.

  • Get into a plank with your shins on the ball.
  • Pull your knees toward your chest| and then shoot your legs back out. Keep your body in a plank position the entire time.
  • Do three sets of 15 to 20 crunches.

| Reverse Plank

This yoga-inspired tabletop lift will tone your triceps| quads| glutes| and abs using a reverse-plank variation.

  • Start in a tabletop position. Inhale and| as you exhale| lower your hips and straighten your legs so your hips are hovering above the floor. To make this move more challenging| hold each position longer.
  • Do three sets of 15 to 20 reps| flowing from one to the other| pivoting on your hands and heels.

| Reverse Plank With Leg Lift

Try this variation of the reverse plank to target your shoulders| legs| and abs.

  • Begin sitting on your tush with your legs straight. Bring your palms a few inches behind you| fingertips facing the toes.
  • Press into your feet and lift your bum off the ground. Try to keep your body in one diagonal line. You can also do this exercise on your elbows if it bothers your wrists.
  • Alternate between lifting your right leg up and then your left. Move with control| making the movements slow and steady| and keeping the hips lifted.
  • Complete three sets of 15 to 20 lifts on each leg.

| Circling Plank

Grab an exercise ball for this move that tones your upper body and your lower abs.

  • Begin in an Elbow Plank with your forearms resting on the top of a ball.
  • Keeping your core strong and your body still| use your arms to roll the ball in small counterclockwise circles.
  • Do five circles in this direction and five clockwise. This counts as one set.
  • Complete three sets.

| Plank Row

Add some rowing action to your plank to target not only your arms and back| but your core and glutes too. Talk about a full-body exercise!

  • Start in a plank position with your legs wider than hip distance; the wider stance makes you more stable. Hold onto your dumbbells| keeping your wrist locked to protect the joint.
  • With your core tight and your glutes engaged| exhale| stabilizing your torso as you lift your left elbow to row; feel your left shoulder blade sliding toward your spine as you bend your elbow up toward the ceiling.
  • Keeping your neck long and energized| return the weight to the ground| and repeat the movement on your right side.
  • Do 10 reps per arm| and repeat for three sets.

| Side Elbow Plank With a Twist

Adding a twist to a side plank challenges your balance| works your obliques| and tones your shoulders!

  • Come into a side elbow plank on your right side| with your feet stacked one on top of the other. Keep your weight on your right elbow with your fingers reaching away from your body.
  • Place your left arm behind your head| and inhale to prepare.
  • Exhale| and pull your navel to your spine| engaging your deep abs. Rotate your left ribcage toward the floor. Stay there for a second| and deepen your abdominal connection by pulling your navel in toward your spine even more.
  • Return to the starting position| and repeat seven more times for a total of eight reps| then switch sides. Repeat series again on your left side.

| Plank With Lateral Arm Reach

With this plank variety| balance and control are key. It’s definitely a move that will have you feeling the burn.

  • Start in a plank position.
  • Keeping your torso stable| slowly reach your left arm out to your side. Brace through the abs by pulling your navel to your spine. Hold this position for five seconds. If you feel too unstable| try moving your right hand so it is under the center of your chest rather than under shoulder right shoulder.
  • Keeping your torso stable| bring your arm back to the plank position. Do not round your back or twist your spine.
  • Repeat this same motion on the other side| extending your right arm to your side.This counts as one rep.
  • Do three sets of five to seven reps.

| Plank Side Walk

For shapely deltoids| take your plank for a sideways walk with this move that’ll target the core as well as the upper body.

  • Begin in plank position with your hands underneath your shoulders| body in one straight line.
  • Simultaneously cross your right hand over your left| as you step your left foot to the left. Then simultaneously step your left hand and right foot to the left| so you’re back in plank position. Your hands move together as your feet step apart.
  • Repeat this for five steps to the left| and five steps to the right to complete a rep. Be sure to keep the hips low as you move| drawing the navel toward the spine.
  • Repeat four more more times for a total of five reps.

| Side-Plank Crunch

We love how this move targets the entire side of the body.

  • Begin in a side elbow plank with your left elbow down and your right hand behind your head.
  • Keeping your torso stable and your waist lifted| bring your right leg up toward your shoulder to lightly tap your right elbow.
  • Lengthen your right leg back to the starting position to complete one rep.
  • Do 10 reps on each side to complete a set. Do three complete sets.

Tone Your Arms and Core With This 3-Minute Plank Workout

Tone Your Arms and Core With This 3-Minute Plank Workout

No weights? No problem. Tone your abs and core with one single bodyweight move u2014 the plank. These five variations will get your heart pumping and your arms and core burning. It only takes three minutes, so if you want a longer workout, repeat this circuit two or three times.

| Frogger

  • Begin in plank position with straight arms and legs.
  • Gently hop the feet forward behind the hands. Then hop the feet back to plank position. This counts as one rep.
  • Complete as many reps as you can for 30 seconds.

| Superwoman Plank

  • Come into plank position.
  • Bend the elbows, and lower the belly to the floor. Take a lift by actively bending the elbows behind you, squeezing the shoulder blades together and raising the legs as high as you can.
  • Plant the palms on the floor underneath the shoulders, and press back up to plank. This counts as one rep.
  • Repeat for 30 seconds.

| Side Plank Crunch

  • Lower into a side elbow plank with your left elbow down and your right hand behind your head.
  • Keeping your torso stable and your waist lifted, bring your right leg up toward your shoulder to lightly tap your right elbow.
  • Lengthen your right leg back to the starting position to complete one rep.
  • Do as many reps as you can for 30 seconds. Then switch sides for another 30 seconds.

| Plank With Creepy Crawler

  • Come into plank position.
  • Bring your right knee to your right elbow, and then return the right leg back to plank position.
  • Repeat this action on the left side to complete one rep.
  • Continue alternating for as many reps as you can for 30 seconds.

| Dolphin Dive

  • Come into Quarter Dog with the forearms parallel. Press your hips and shoulders back toward your feet, lengthening through your spine. Walk your toes away from you a couple inches.
  • With fingers spread wide, dive forward, lowering the chin so it’s barely touching the floor in front of the fingertips. The shoulders should hover over the wrists, and the elbows should remain in line with the middle fingers.
  • Press back to Quarter Dog to complete one rep.
  • Do as many reps as you can for 30 seconds.

25 No-Equipment Moves That Transform Your Body

25 No-Equipment Moves That Transform Your Body

Whether you’ve let go of your gym membership or you’re spending more time shaping up from home| these effective no-equipment moves need to be part of your strength-training routine. You might be all about cardio for that big calorie burn| but a recent study found that strength training burns roughly Upper Body] [Core] [Lower Body] [Plyometrics]| Upper Body: Push-Up

  • Start in a plank position| with palms spread out evenly and your shoulders over your wrists and legs out behind you. Pull your belly button in| and keep your back straight.
  • As you lower and exhale| bend your elbows outward to the sides. Hold at the bottom before you raise back up to complete one rep.

| Upper Body: Diamond Push-Ups

  • Start in plank position with your hands under your shoulders and your body in one straight line.
  • If your knees aren’t on the floor| separate your feet so they’re about shoulder-width apart to help you stay balanced throughout the exercise.
  • Place your hands together| directly under your sternum| with the tips of your index fingers and thumbs touching. Your fingers and thumbs should form a diamond or triangle shape.
  • Bend your elbows out to the sides| and lower your chest toward the floor. Then exhale to straighten your arms. This counts as one rep.

| Upper Body: Superman

  • Lie on your belly| engage your abs| and extend your arms straight out in front of you.
  • Lift your legs| arms| and chest off the floor. Hold for a count of 10| and then slowly release your body back to the floor. This completes one rep.

| Upper Body and Core: Plank Up and Down

  • Come into a plank position with your arms and legs straight. Your hands should be underneath your shoulders and your feet hips-width distance apart.
  • Keep your torso parallel to the floor| and lower your right forearm to the mat and then the left| coming into elbow plank.
  • Then step your right hand back onto the mat| and then the left| pushing yourself back up to plank position. This completes one push-up walk.

| Upper Body and Core: Lateral Plank Walk

This move will challenge your core and define your deltoids| shaping your shoulders.

  • Begin in plank position with your hands underneath your shoulders and your body in one straight line.
  • Simultaneously cross your right hand toward the left as you step your left foot out to the left. Then simultaneously step your left hand and right foot to the left| returning to the plank position. Your hands move together as your feet step apart. Take two more steps in this direction| keeping your abs pulled toward your spine and your pelvis level. This completes one rep.
  • Reverse directions| taking three steps to the right.

| Upper Body and Core: Push-Up and Rotate

  • Begin in a plank position with your feet in line with your hips.
  • Lower your body toward the floor| and then push through your arms| returning to plank.
  • Twist to the left| reaching your left arm to the ceiling without letting your pelvis rise or lower.
  • Return to plank position| bringing your hand back to the floor. This completes one rep.

| Upper and Lower Body: Reverse Plank Bridge

  • Begin seated with your hands behind you with your fingers pointed away from you.
  • Press the heels of your feet and hands into the ground as you raise your pelvis off the floor until it is in line with your shoulders and knees.
  • Lower your pelvis back to the ground to complete one rep.

| Core: Bicycle Crunches

  • Lie flat on the floor with your lower back pressed to the ground (pull your abs down to also target your deep abs). Interlace your fingers| and put your hands behind your head.
  • Bring your knees in toward your chest| and lift your shoulder blades off the ground.
  • Straighten your right leg out to about a 45-degree angle to the ground while turning your upper body to the left| bringing your right elbow toward the left knee. Make sure your rib cage is moving and not just your elbows.
  • Now switch sides and do the same motion on the other side to complete one rep (and to create the “pedaling”” motion).

| Core: Seated Russian Twist

  • Sit on the ground with your knees bent| pull your abs to your spine| and lean back a few inches while lifting your feet off the floor. Be sure to keep your back straight.
  • Reach your arms out in front of you| and twist your torso to the right| then to the left| repeating for one minute. Lower your heels to the ground if you need to.

| Core: Reverse Crunch

  • Lie on your back on the floor. Place your hands on the floor beside you.
  • Bring the knees in toward the chest with your feet together.
  • Use your abs to slowly curl the hips off the floor and into your chest| and then slowly lower them back to the starting position to complete one.
  • Repeat for one minute. Don’t swing your legs to create momentum; use your abs to control your movement.

| Core: V-Sits

  • Lie on your back| and reach your arms rigidly to your side| off the floor. Lift your legs off the floor| and point them| so they are at about a 45-degree angle. Lift your head| so your shoulders are off the floor as well.
  • When you’re ready to begin| lift your upper torso off the floor| and bend your knees. You can lean back to make this move harder or come up more to make it easier. Slowly lower your upper body back down to the floor| straightening out your legs as you do so. Stop when your back is on the floor| but not your head| shoulders| or legs.
  • This completes one rep.

| Core: Mountain Climbers

  • Start in a traditional push-up starting position u2014 shoulders over hands and weight on just your toes.
  • Bring your right foot forward| bending the knee and putting weight on the ball of your foot.
  • Switch legs| bringing the left knee forward while moving the right leg back. This completes one rep.

| Core: Side Plank

  • Sit on your left side with your legs slightly bent and your feet stacked.
  • Place your left hand about 12 inches from your pelvis.
  • Push your hand into the ground| and straighten your legs as you lift your pelvis off the ground. If you have trouble balancing| stagger your feet| so the top leg is in front.
  • Hold for 30 seconds| and switch sides to complete one rep.

| Core: Full Sit-Ups

  • Lay on your back with bent knees and feet flat on the ground| and place your hands on opposite shoulders.
  • Keeping your heels on the ground and your toes flat to the ground| engage your abdominal muscles| and gently lift your head first| followed by your shoulder blades| coming into a full-sit up position.
  • Hold the position for a second| and with control| come slowly back do to lying on your back.
  • This completes one full sit-up.

| Lower Body: Good Morning

  • Stand with your feet hip-width apart| and place your hands at the back of your head with your elbows opened wide.
  • Pull your abs to your spine| and keep your back neutral while pressing your butt backward| hinging at that hips| until your back is almost parallel to the floor. Keep a slight bend in your knees as you bend forward.
  • Return to standing| squeezing your glutes when you are upright. This completes one rep.

| Lower Body: Basic Squat

  • Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart. Hold your hands comfortably in front of your chest to help you stay balanced| and bend your knees| lowering your hips deeply| so your thighs are parallel with the floor. Make sure to keep your weight back in your heels.
  • Then rise back up| straightening the legs completely and squeezing the glutes at the top of the movement to get the most out of the exercise.
  • This counts as one rep.

| Lower Body: Wall Sit

  • Stand with your back against a wall| placing your feet about two feet in front of you. Feet should be hip-distance apart.
  • Bending your knees| slide your back down the wall until your knees are at 90-degree angles. Your knee joints should be over your ankle joints| so you may need to inch your feet farther from the wall to create proper alignment. Don’t let your knees fall into the midline of your body or sway outward.

| Lower Body: Sumo Squat

  • Stand with legs wide and toes pointed outward slightly. Place your hands at your head with elbows wide to challenge your abs as you do this move.
  • Bend your knees until they are over your ankles. Your feet should be far enough apart that your thighs are parallel to the floor and your knees near 90 degrees. Push through your heels to straighten your legs. This completes one rep.

| Lower Body: Side Lunge

  • Step your left leg back into a deep lunge| making 90-degree angles with both knees.
  • Raise your arms out to the side until your upper arms are parallel to the ground. Bend your elbows to 90 degrees| making loose fists with your hands.
  • Hold the lunge while as you rotate your upper arms forward to bring your fists to the floor; then rotate the upper arm backward to bring the fists up. Do not lower or raise your upper arms; keep them parallel to the floor. This complete one rep.

| Lower Body: Lunge

  • Keep your upper body straight| with your shoulders back and relaxed and your chin up (pick a point to stare at in front of you| so you don’t keep looking down). Always engage your core.
  • Step forward with one leg| lowering your hips until both knees are bent at about a 90-degree angle. Make sure your front knee is directly above your ankle| not pushed out too far| and make sure your other knee doesn’t touch the floor. Keep the weight in your heels as you push back up to the starting position. This counts as one lunge.

| Lower Body: Single-Leg Balance Touch

  • Begin standing with arms overhead with all your weight on your left foot.
  • Keeping your spine long| reach forward| bending your left knee| and touch both hands to the ground. Keep your abs engaged to keep your torso stable.
  • Lower your right leg down while lifting your torso| bringing your arms overhead to complete one rep.

| Plyometrics: Jump Squat

  • Start by coming into a squat with your arms by your sides.
  • Swing your arms to the ceiling as you jump off with both feet. Land quietly as you return to the squat position. This completes one rep.

| Plyometrics: Jumping Lunges

  • Stand with your feet staggered| your left foot slightly in front of your right. Making sure you’re not too stiff| keep your stance active with your knees bent in a slight but not full lunge.
  • With your core engaged| push off the bottom of both feet into a jump| switching the position of your feet in midair| landing in a basic lunge with your right leg in front.
  • Without rest| repeat this movement| alternating which leg is in front. This completes one rep.

| Plyometrics: High-Knee Skips

  • Skip in place by hopping on your right leg while bringing the left knee up toward your chest.
  • Engage your abs as the knee comes toward your chest.
  • Switch legs| and keep skipping while pumping your arms.
  • This completes one rep.

| Plyometrics: Burpee

  • Lower into a crouching squat with your hands on the floor.
  • Do a squat thrust by jumping your feet back into a plank position.
  • Do one basic push-up| bending the elbows and then straightening back to plank.
  • Jump the feet forward to the hands| and come into a squat.
  • Do an explosive jump straight up| getting as much height as you can.

    Hard-Core Core Move: Side-Walking Plank

    Bored with the usual planks? Take your plank for a sideways walk with this move that’ll target the core as well as the upper body. If shapely deltoids are your passion, this move will make them happen.

    Begin in plank position with your hands underneath your shoulders, body in one straight line. Simultaneously cross your right hand over your left, as you step your left foot to the left. Then simultaneously step your left hand and right foot to the left, so you’re back in plank position. Your hands move together as your feet step apart.Repeat this for five steps to the left, and five steps to the right. Be sure to keep the hips low as you move, drawing the navel toward the spine.Repeat twice more for a total of three sets.Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography

    Hard-Core Core Move: Side-Walking Plank

    Bored with the usual planks? Take your plank for a sideways walk with this move that’ll target the core as well as the upper body. If shapely deltoids are your passion| this move will make them happen.

    Begin in plank position with your hands underneath your shoulders| body in one straight line. Simultaneously cross your right hand over your left| as you step your left foot to the left. Then simultaneously step your left hand and right foot to the left| so you’re back in plank position. Your hands move together as your feet step apart.Repeat this for five steps to the left| and five steps to the right. Be sure to keep the hips low as you move| drawing the navel toward the spine.Repeat twice more for a total of three sets.Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography

    6 Ways to Make Your Planks Even More Effective

    6 Ways to Make Your Planks Even More Effective

    Planks are one of the most effective exercises because they fire up so many muscles at once, especially the core and upper body. You can make them even harder u2014 you know you want to! u2014 by adding a pair of dumbbells. Grab a pair of three- to 10-pounders and throw these moves into your next routine. Since plank position can be tough on the wrists, alternate these plank variations with moves that give your hands a break, such as squats or lunges.

    Related: 2-Week Plank Challenge

    | Plank and Rotate

    Twisting in a plank position fires up the core and works those love handles.

    • Begin in a plank position holding a dumbbell in each hand, keeping your wrists stiff to protect the joints. Open your feet a little wider than hip distance.
    • Lift your left hand to the ceiling, twisting through your entire torso. Your pelvis will rotate, but keep it level.
    • Bring your left hand back to the floor, and repeat this action on the other side to complete one rep.
    • Do 10 to 15 reps to complete a set.

    | Plank With Row

    Work your arms and abs while improving your posture with this simple move.

    • Start in a plank position holding a weight in your right hand.
    • Keep your torso stable as you pull your elbow toward the ceiling, squeezing your right shoulder blade toward your spine.
    • Lower the weight to the floor with control to complete one rep.
    • Complete 10 to 15 reps, then switch sides.

    Related: Printable 20-Minute Plank Workout For the Flat Abs You’ve Always Wanted

    | Plank Row and Rotate

    This plank row variation adds a twist.

    • Start in a plank position holding a weight in your right hand.
    • Keep your torso stable as you pull your elbow toward the ceiling, squeezing your right shoulder blade toward your spine.
    • Rotate the torso and raise the right arm into the air.
    • Lower the weight to the floor with control to complete one rep.
    • Complete 10 to 15 reps, then switch sides.

    | Plank With Triceps Kickback

    Another move that tones your arms, butt, and core is this triceps kickback variation.

    • Start in a plank position holding a weight in each hand. Bend your left elbow and pull it up so it’s in line with your shoulder.
    • Pull your navel toward your spine to engage your abs, which will help you stay balanced.
    • Exhale as you do a triceps kickback by extending your left hand behind you. Inhale to bend your elbow. This counts as one rep.
    • Complete 10 to 15 reps on each side.

    | Side Plank With Reverse Fly

    Side planks tone the muffin top, and adding the reverse fly into the mix not only challenges the abs a bit more but also tones the back of the shoulder. Squeeze your inner thighs together for added stability.

    • Start in a side plank on your left side, holding your weight in your right hand with your right arm parallel to the floor.
    • Exhale and pull your abs toward your spine to stabilize your torso as you raise your right arm to the ceiling. Do not let your hand travel behind your shoulder. Lower the weight back to starting position to complete one rep.
    • If you feel unstable in this position, split your legs, bringing your right leg forward to steady yourself.
    • Do 10 to 15 reps before switching sides.

    | Plank and Straight-Arm Kickback

    Work your arms and abs together with this plank variation.

    • Start in a plank position holding a dumbbell in each hand. Open your feet wider than hip width for a stronger base of support.
    • Lift your left arm behind you as high as you can. Bring the left arm back into plank to complete one rep.
    • Do 10 to 15 reps with each arm.

    6 Ways to Make Your Planks Even More Effective

    6 Ways to Make Your Planks Even More Effective

    Planks are one of the most effective exercises because they fire up so many muscles at once| especially the core and upper body. You can make them even harder u2014 you know you want to! u2014 by adding a pair of dumbbells. Grab a pair of three- to 10-pounders and throw these moves into your next routine. Since plank position can be tough on the wrists| alternate these plank variations with moves that give your hands a break| such as squats or lunges.

    Related: 2-Week Plank Challenge

    | Plank and Rotate

    Twisting in a plank position fires up the core and works those love handles.

    • Begin in a plank position holding a dumbbell in each hand| keeping your wrists stiff to protect the joints. Open your feet a little wider than hip distance.
    • Lift your left hand to the ceiling| twisting through your entire torso. Your pelvis will rotate| but keep it level.
    • Bring your left hand back to the floor| and repeat this action on the other side to complete one rep.
    • Do 10 to 15 reps to complete a set.

    | Plank With Row

    Work your arms and abs while improving your posture with this simple move.

    • Start in a plank position holding a weight in your right hand.
    • Keep your torso stable as you pull your elbow toward the ceiling| squeezing your right shoulder blade toward your spine.
    • Lower the weight to the floor with control to complete one rep.
    • Complete 10 to 15 reps| then switch sides.

    Related: Printable 20-Minute Plank Workout For the Flat Abs You’ve Always Wanted

    | Plank Row and Rotate

    This plank row variation adds a twist.

    • Start in a plank position holding a weight in your right hand.
    • Keep your torso stable as you pull your elbow toward the ceiling| squeezing your right shoulder blade toward your spine.
    • Rotate the torso and raise the right arm into the air.
    • Lower the weight to the floor with control to complete one rep.
    • Complete 10 to 15 reps| then switch sides.

    | Plank With Triceps Kickback

    Another move that tones your arms| butt| and core is this triceps kickback variation.

    • Start in a plank position holding a weight in each hand. Bend your left elbow and pull it up so it’s in line with your shoulder.
    • Pull your navel toward your spine to engage your abs| which will help you stay balanced.
    • Exhale as you do a triceps kickback by extending your left hand behind you. Inhale to bend your elbow. This counts as one rep.
    • Complete 10 to 15 reps on each side.

    | Side Plank With Reverse Fly

    Side planks tone the muffin top| and adding the reverse fly into the mix not only challenges the abs a bit more but also tones the back of the shoulder. Squeeze your inner thighs together for added stability.

    • Start in a side plank on your left side| holding your weight in your right hand with your right arm parallel to the floor.
    • Exhale and pull your abs toward your spine to stabilize your torso as you raise your right arm to the ceiling. Do not let your hand travel behind your shoulder. Lower the weight back to starting position to complete one rep.
    • If you feel unstable in this position| split your legs| bringing your right leg forward to steady yourself.
    • Do 10 to 15 reps before switching sides.

    | Plank and Straight-Arm Kickback

    Work your arms and abs together with this plank variation.

    • Start in a plank position holding a dumbbell in each hand. Open your feet wider than hip width for a stronger base of support.
    • Lift your left arm behind you as high as you can. Bring the left arm back into plank to complete one rep.
    • Do 10 to 15 reps with each arm.

    Sculpt and Strengthen Your Arms With This 3-Week Challenge

    Sculpt and Strengthen Your Arms With This 3-Week Challenge

    Everyone has their own reasons for wanting strong, defined arms; we’re here to help. After following this 21-day arm plan, not only will your arms look toned u2014 you’ll also be stronger. First thing’s first: don’t worry if you’ve never lifted a dumbbell in your life. This arm challenge was designed with everyone in mind u2014 whether it’s your first time working out or you’re at the gym on a daily basis.

    Getting started: The challenge consists of five basic exercises that help to target all the areas of your arms. Over the course of the challenge, you will increase the number of reps you’re doing of each exercise, eventually working up to three sets of 15 reps for each exercise.

    Below is an explanation of how to do each of the five exercises, followed by the plan itself. Choosing the appropriate size weight is key here u2014 you want one that fatigues your muscles by the end of the three sets. If the challenge ever feels too easy, that’s your cue to increase the weight of the dumbbells (and if you find you are fatiguing too early, decrease the weight amount). Beginners should start the plan with five-pound weights, and for you more-experienced lifters, make this challenge work for you by grabbing a heavier set.

    | Bicep Curl

    • Start by holding a dumbbell in each hand at the sides of the body.
    • Keeping your elbows close to your side, slowly raise the dumbbells to the chest.
    • Moving with control, lower back to the starting position.
    • This counts as one rep.

    | Upright Row

    • Place a dumbbell in each hand with your palms facing your body, shoulders over the pelvis, and a slight bend in the knees.
    • Keeping the dumbbells close to your body, raise them to your shoulders, bending your elbows out to the sides. Slowly lower them to the starting position.
    • This counts as one rep.
    • | Triceps Kickback

      • Holding a dumbbell in each hand, hinge forward from your hips, bending the knees slightly. Bend your elbows behind you.
      • Straighten your arms behind you with your palms facing in. Your arms should be parallel to the floor. Squeeze your triceps, and then return to the starting position.
      • This counts as one rep.

    | Overhead Shoulder Press

    • Hold a dumbbell in each hand just above the shoulders, palms facing in.
    • Straighten the arms above you.
    • Bend the elbows coming back to the starting position to complete one rep.

    | Bent-Over Reverse Fly

    • Holding a dumbbell in each hand with your closed palms facing out, stand with the knees slightly bent. Keeping your back flat, bend forward at the hip joint.
    • Lift both arms to the sides, maintaining a slight bend in the elbows, and squeeze your shoulder blades together. Then, with control, lower the dumbbells back together.
    • This completes one rep.

    | The 3-Week Plan

    Choose an appropriate size dumbbell (three to eight pounds) and follow the plan above. Every other day is a rest day to give your muscles a chance to rebuild and become stronger.

    Sculpt and Strengthen Your Arms With This 3-Week Challenge

    Sculpt and Strengthen Your Arms With This 3-Week Challenge

    Everyone has their own reasons for wanting strong| defined arms; we’re here to help. After following this 21-day arm plan| not only will your arms look toned u2014 you’ll also be stronger. First thing’s first: don’t worry if you’ve never lifted a dumbbell in your life. This arm challenge was designed with everyone in mind u2014 whether it’s your first time working out or you’re at the gym on a daily basis.

    Getting started: The challenge consists of five basic exercises that help to target all the areas of your arms. Over the course of the challenge| you will increase the number of reps you’re doing of each exercise| eventually working up to three sets of 15 reps for each exercise.

    Below is an explanation of how to do each of the five exercises| followed by the plan itself. Choosing the appropriate size weight is key here u2014 you want one that fatigues your muscles by the end of the three sets. If the challenge ever feels too easy| that’s your cue to increase the weight of the dumbbells (and if you find you are fatiguing too early| decrease the weight amount). Beginners should start the plan with five-pound weights| and for you more-experienced lifters| make this challenge work for you by grabbing a heavier set.

    | Bicep Curl

    • Start by holding a dumbbell in each hand at the sides of the body.
    • Keeping your elbows close to your side| slowly raise the dumbbells to the chest.
    • Moving with control| lower back to the starting position.
    • This counts as one rep.

    | Upright Row

    • Place a dumbbell in each hand with your palms facing your body| shoulders over the pelvis| and a slight bend in the knees.
    • Keeping the dumbbells close to your body| raise them to your shoulders| bending your elbows out to the sides. Slowly lower them to the starting position.
    • This counts as one rep.
    • | Triceps Kickback

      • Holding a dumbbell in each hand| hinge forward from your hips| bending the knees slightly. Bend your elbows behind you.
      • Straighten your arms behind you with your palms facing in. Your arms should be parallel to the floor. Squeeze your triceps| and then return to the starting position.
      • This counts as one rep.

    | Overhead Shoulder Press

    • Hold a dumbbell in each hand just above the shoulders| palms facing in.
    • Straighten the arms above you.
    • Bend the elbows coming back to the starting position to complete one rep.

    | Bent-Over Reverse Fly

    • Holding a dumbbell in each hand with your closed palms facing out| stand with the knees slightly bent. Keeping your back flat| bend forward at the hip joint.
    • Lift both arms to the sides| maintaining a slight bend in the elbows| and squeeze your shoulder blades together. Then| with control| lower the dumbbells back together.
    • This completes one rep.

    | The 3-Week Plan

    Choose an appropriate size dumbbell (three to eight pounds) and follow the plan above. Every other day is a rest day to give your muscles a chance to rebuild and become stronger.

    Get the Arms You Want Without Doing Push-Ups

    Let’s be honest ¡ª push-ups can be tough. Luckily, our friends at Self have given us six alternative moves to get toned arms.

    1. Power Punch

    SELF / Arthur Belebeau

    Anchor center of band at hip height. Stand with back to anchor, holding handles at hips, elbows bent, palms up. Lunge left leg forward as you punch with right hand (as shown); repeat on opposite side for one rep. Do three sets of 12 reps.

    Works shoulders, triceps, biceps, butt, thighs

    2. Flex and Crunch

    SELF / Arthur Belebeau

    Anchor center of band about 2 feet off floor and sit with feet flat, holding handles in front of you, palms up; curl handles toward you so biceps engage. Lie back (as shown) to floor; sit up, biceps still engaged. Do three sets of 12 reps.

    Works biceps, abs

    3. Fiesty Fighter

    SELF / Lauren & Talbert

    Stand on band with feet wide, knees soft, a handle in each hand. Pivot on right toe as you uppercut punch to left (as shown). Quickly repeat on opposite side for 1 rep. Do 20 reps.

    Works shoulders, back, obliques, legs

    4. X-Raise

    SELF / Larsen & Talbert

    Stand on band with feet hip-width apart; crisscross it in front of you and hold handles at hips, palms in. Step to left as you raise hands to chest, elbows out (as shown). Return to start; repeat on opposite side for 1 rep. Do 20 reps.

    Works shoulders, back, outer thighs

    5. Biceps Burn

    SELF / Larsen & Talbert

    Stand on band with feet more than hip-width apart, a handle in each hand, arms locked at sides, palms up. Curl handles up until you feel biceps engage (as shown); lower arms to start, then rotate hands in front of body and curl toward chest. Lower and return to start for 1 rep. Do 20 reps.

    Works arms

    6. Curl and Crunch

    SELF / Larsen & Talbert

    Lie face up with center of band around feet, legs extended and hovering above floor, a handle in each hand, palms up, arms at sides to start. Curl hands toward chest with elbows at sides as you crunch up, raising legs a little higher (as shown). Lower to start; repeat. Do 20 reps.

    Works arms, abs

    Check out more great articles by Self:

    5 Essential Foam Roller Exercises Your Muscles Will Love

    5 Apps For Incredible At-Home Workouts

    These Simple Stretches Will Help Combat That Too-Full Feeling

    Work Your Butt, Thighs, and Abs With This No-Equipment-Needed Exercise

    Image Source: Self Magazine