\For the most part when it comes to strength training, women want to be toned but not super muscular.
Finding exercises that accomplish that goal can be difficult.
Diana Ozimek, co-owner of Windy City Adventure Boot Camp in Evanston and Lincoln Park notes, “I have women of all shapes, sizes and ages that come to my boot camp striving for the same goal. They all want to be more toned and feel better about their bodies. I cater all of the boot camp exercises to accomplish those goals for the women in my classes.”
But if you can’t make it to boot camp, here are a few of Ozimek’s go-to moves for a head-to-toe toning.
The Thighs: This area is always a focus point for women. Some exercises that tone the thighs include:
- Lunges: Take your average lunges to the next level by performing a Runner’s Lunge. Place hands on the ground with front leg in a lunge and back leg straight out behind and close to ground; drive through with back leg adding a kick a kick at the front.
- Sumo Squat – 1 leg deadlift: Perform an extra wide squat leading with your butt to the ground, step in lifting one leg as you lower weights to floor. This exercise works quads, hamstrings, glutes and core.
The Arms: We all want the arms that look like Michelle Obama, but the key is small weights and a large number of reps or using your own body weight. Some great exercises are:
- Jack feet push up: Get into the push up position. Jump and push your legs out into a “v” and jump back into the push-up position. Raise one leg and bend arms into a push up and put your leg down and raise your arms. Continue with other leg.
- Plank: Tricep Kickback instead. Start in the top of a push up position with feet wide, hold weight in one hand raising it next to your hip and perform a tricep kick back while holding the plank. This exercise works your core, shoulder & tricep.
The Butt: Some of us may have a little too much junk in the trunk and just want to see our glutes nice and toned. Here are some exercises that can get you started.
- Hip extensions: Get on all fours with knees and elbows on the ground. Lift and bend one leg behind you. In the crook of your knee add a small weight. Lift and lower a few times and then switch legs.
- Squat with kick back: Stand straight with your legs shoulder width apart. Sit back in a squat bringing your fists close to your face. Bring on of your legs straight behind you and extend your arms forward. Continue to alternate sides.