For Your Butt and Legs7. Glute Squeeze
If fanny spread has begun to seem like an occupational hazard, try this glute squeeze, suggested by Nancy Kennedy of Kennedy & Strom Fitness in Los Angeles: Sit straight in your chair, abdominal muscles tight, and squeeze your buttocks together for three to five counts, release for two, then repeat 15 to 20 times for a set. Try to work in three or four sets a day, and you'll definitely feel a "tighter, higher tushie" in a month or so, says Kennedy.
8. Mini Leg Lifts
The next time you're just standing around, grab on to something solid (sink, desk, table) and tone your butt, suggests Lydia Bach, founder of the Lotte Berk Method and creator of its video series. Stand straight with one leg slightly in back of you, two to three inches off the ground, foot flexed. Hold for 15 to 20 breaths, then do 20 to 30 tiny lifts, pausing at the top of each lift for a couple of seconds. Repeat on the other side. If you don't feel sore the next day, double the number of reps. "This works both the standing and lifting sides," says Bach. Repeated over time, it's a good investment, resulting in "high, round assets."
9. Leg Resistors
Here's a bargain—three body parts worked out for the price of one exercise, and you can reap the rewards without ever leaving your chair (or airplane seat), according to William J. Kraemer, PhD, professor of kinesiology at the University of Connecticut. To tone your inner thighs (body part number one), sit with your feet about shoulder-width apart, and put your hands on the insides of your knees, palms pushing out. Then slowly try to bring your knees together, providing resistance with your arm muscles (body part number two). Do two sets of ten repetitions (each rep should last three to five seconds), then go for number three, the outer thighs: Start in the same position, but place your hands on the outsides of your knees and try to push your thighs outward against the resistance of your arm muscles. Do two sets of ten reps as before. Repeat at least three times a week (preferably daily) to help develop and tone your thigh and arm muscles.
10. Natural Stairmaster
Walk on your tiptoes when you take the stairs. According to Los Angeles-based trainer Ellen Barrett, featured in the Crunch: Fat Burning Pilates workout video, you'll tone your calves ("They'll look lifted," says Barrett) and coach your body to maintain good posture. "You can't be on your toes and slump forward at the same time," says Barrett.
This article is part of Oprah.com's 2011 Feel Good Challenge. Join now—and move closer to the life you want!
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