Go ahead, skip the gym today -- all you need is a chair, a hand towel and 10 minutes of your day to tone and strengthen your lower half. Brooke Marrone, founder of the New York City-based private traning studio Marrone Fitness, shares a simple at-home routine that works your legs and butt in just four quick moves.
The best part? "Not a single one is squat," Marrone promises.
"The back lunge is a great way to not only work all the major muscle groups in your legs, but also to get a great stretch," Marrone says.
In the above #OWNSHOW video, she demonstrates how to do a back lunge with a twist. Begin with your hands in front of your body, shoulders back. Step your right leg back and twist your torso to the left side of your body. Hold for a few seconds and come back to your starting position. Repeat with your left leg, twisting your torso to the right.
"Step-ups are a great way to challenge all the major muscle groups in your legs and you can really control the difficulty by changing how high your step is," Marrone says.
Place a chair in front of you and stand with your feet a few inches apart. Shoulders should be back, abs in. Lift your left leg and place your foot flat on the chair. Push your body up from your front heel so both feet are standing on the chair. At the top, make sure your shoulders are back, your abs are in, and your legs are almost completely straight. When you feel balanced, step down with your left leg, followed by your right.
Side-Lying Leg Lifts
Start by laying on your side with your bottom arm under your head and your legs out at a 45 degree angle in front of your body. Make sure that your core is engaged, your hips are stacked, and your feet are flexed.
Lift your top leg up, flex your foot and slowly rotate your hips forward so that your toes are pointing towards the floor. Drop your top leg down to the bottom leg and slowly lift back up, making sure to not extend too much higher than your hip.
Sliding Side Lunges
For this move, all you need is a small towel or face cloth. Begin with feet a few inches apart and place the towel under your right foot. With shoulders back and abs in, use the towel to slowly slide your right leg out as you bend your left knee. Hips should sink back while your left leg stays parallel to the floor. Make sure your chest is open, your core is engaged, and your toes are always facing forward.
"When you bring that right leg out to the side, make sure you're gently sliding it out and that you're really sinking your hips back and not sliding forward into that knee," Marrone instructs.
When you've reached your lowest position, tuck your belly in and slowly bring that right leg back into your starting position.
More: 3 morning stretches that release tension and loosen your hips.
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