20-Minute Lower-Body Blast

Turn your lower-body routine into a serious fat-scorching sweat session. Combining simple plymoteric-inspired movements and slashing your rest periods is a surefire way to power up your legs and glutes—and your metabolism—and get you in and out of the gym in a flash. 

LATERAL BENCH STEP-UP

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ŸWORKS: Gluteus maximus, quadriceps, adductor magnus

SET UP: Grasp a dumbbell in each hand and stand beside the center of a weight bench. Hold your arms straight down at your sides with your palms facing inward.

ACTION: Place your left foot firmly on top of the bench so that your right knee is bent and aligned directly over your ankle. Slightly bend your right knee and push off the floor to lift yourself upward. Pause briefly at the top and then step your right leg back down to the start.

DO THIS: Complete eight reps with the left leg, then switch legs and repeat for another eight. Do 3-4 sets each leg.

TIP: Keep your arms straight and shoulders relaxed, back, and down throughout the movement.

INTENSITY BUMP: On your last two sets, perform an additional 10 reps of single-leg power hops after each set.

UP THE BURN

To really make your legs and glutes burn, you’ll complete one set of the following exercise then immediately perform a set of dumbbell squats. Break for 30 seconds and repeat the exercises back to back again. Complete 3-4 sets of 12-15 reps for each exercise.

STABILITY BALL HAMSTRING CURL

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WORKS: Erector spinae, abdominals, glutes, hamstrings, gastrocnemius

SET UP: Lie flat on the floor with your arms at your sides, heels on the ball.

ACTION: Lift your hips up until your ankles, back and shoulders are in line. Slowly bend your knees and squeeze your hamstrings, pulling the ball in toward your glutes. Pause briefly, then roll the ball back out until your knees are straight. Repeat.

TIP: Do not drop your hips as you roll the ball back to the start position. Keep your hips up and legs fully extended between reps.

INTENSITY BUMP: Perform this move using one leg only. Start with both feet on the ball, then lift your left foot while you pull the ball toward your glutes using only your right leg. Repeat for reps, then switch legs.

DUMBBELL SQUAT

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ŸWORKS: Erector spinae, gluteus maximus, quadriceps, hamstrings

SET UP: Holding a pair of dumbbells at your sides, stand with feet shoulder-width apart, toes pointed forward.

ACTION: With your back flat, abs tight, squat down until your thighs are at least parallel to the floor. Press up through your heels, shifting your hips forward and squeezing your glutes to return to standing.

TIP: Do not let your knees travel past your toes. This will take tension off your glutes and hamstrings, and more importantly, could lead to injury.

INTENSITY BUMP: On the last two sets, perform an additional 10 reps of pop squats after each set.

UP THE BURN

To really make your legs and glutes burn, again, you’ll complete one set of the following exercise then immediately perform a set of alternating jump lunges. Break for 30 seconds and repeat the exercises back to back again. Complete 2-3 sets of 10-15 reps for each exercise.

JUMP SQUAT

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ŸWORKS: Erector spinae, gluteus maximus, quadriceps, hamstrings

SET UP: Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, toes pointed forward, and hands clasped together in front of your chest.

ACTION: Bend your hips and knees to lower down using a faster-than-usual descent until your thighs are at least parallel with the floor. Press back up explosively through your heels and jump to a full standing position. Absorb the landing in the balls of your feet with your knees soft, then immediately lower down into another squat and repeat.

TIP: Be sure to keep your chest high, back flat, and abs tight as you push your hips back and descend into the squat position.

ALTERNATING JUMP LUNGE

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WORKS: Gluteus maximus, hip flexors, quadriceps, hamstrings, gastrocnemius

SET UP: Stand erect with one foot out in front of the other, hands clasped together in front of your chest.

ACTION: Keeping your chest high, abs tight, squat down using a faster-than-usual descent until your front leg is parallel to the floor. Push explosively through the heel of your front foot to return to standing, aiming to get as much height as possible. Before landing, quickly switch feet and immediately descend into another lunge and repeat.

TIP: If you are new to jump lunges, try holding onto something sturdy and stable, such as a chair, as you learn the movement.

Workout provided by Eric Daye, owner of Trubody Fitness in Burlington, Ontario, Canada.

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