Summer is just around the corner, but there’s still time to tighten up! After all, sculpted glutes and abs are perfect accessories for the summer season. To assist us in achieving this goal, we’ve recruited IFBB Bikini Pro Sara Back. This beauty from Finland made her competition debut in August 2013, won the Finnish Championships that year, and then earned her Pro card at the Arnold Amateur in Madrid— so she knows what it takes to sculpt award-winning glutes and abs.
Whether you need a little extra toning up or just a switch-up from your regular routine, this program is for you! Implement this workout into your exercise regimen and get ready to tone up before summer ends!
Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and hands at your sides, holding dumbbells. Lunge forward with one leg, bending it until the thigh is parallel to the floor. The heel of the lead leg should stay on the ground. Do not shift your weight too far forward and let the knee move out past the toes. Repeat the exercise using the other leg. Keep your back and head as straight as possible. Do this exercise as rapidly and explosively as you can, while maintaining proper technique.
Sit on the floor with a barbell positioned over your shins and align your upper back across a secure padded bench or step, feet approximately shoulder-width apart. Roll the barbell over your thighs so it rests at your hips (if the bar causes discomfort, consider using a pad or towel around the bar). Brace your core and forcefully extend the hips until the torso is parallel with the ground and a hip-neutral position is reached. Hold the contracted position for a moment, and then return to the start position.
Single-leg Stiff-leg Deadlifts
Have one leg slightly behind the other and hold a dumbbell on the same side as the back leg. Bend forward at the hips, raising the back leg, and then return to starting position.
Russian twist on ball
With your upper back on a stability ball, your feet on the floor and your hips nearly straight, extend your arms up. Turn your torso from side to side, with slow and controlled movements and a tight core, while keeping arms straight.
Exercise ball pull-in
Begin on all fours in a push-up position with your feet on the ball. Engage your core and bring your knees toward your chest, with the ball rolling forward as your knees tuck under your body and you bring your hips toward the ceiling. Hold the position for a moment before returning to starting position. Keep your core and glutes activated through the whole exercise and keep your back straight.
Jackknife sit-up with rotation
Sit on a mat and lift your upper body and legs from the floor as pictured. Your arms and legs should be straight and you are balancing on your glutes. Slowly lower your back and twist your torso to one side by moving your hand to the side, and open your chest. Hold this position for a one count and then crunch up back to the starting position. Alternate twisting to each side.
You can do the standard plank, but also try variations to switch it up. Try it from your elbows and take turns lifting each leg for one minute. On your hands, you can also simultaneously lift the opposite arm and leg. Keep your glutes and abs activated the entire time.
Cable Butt Kickbacks
Attach ankle strap from the low pulley cable. Stand facing the machine with knees bent, grabbing the machine frame for support. Kick your leg back as far as you can without arching your back, and concentrate on squeezing your glutes as you extend your hip.
Position the cable machine pulley high and attach the grip bar. Kneel below the pulley. Grasp the bar and lower it down so that the bar is placed behind your head. Position your hips back slightly and allow the resistance from the cable to lift your torso upward a bit so that your spine is slightly hyperextended. Keeping the hips stationary, contract the abs and bend the waist. The elbows should move toward the thighs/knees, rather than straight toward the ground. Think of curling your torso toward your knees. Pause at the bottom of the movement and tense the abs hard. Inhale and slowly return to the starting position. Make sure to keep tension in the abs throughout the exercise.
Hanging leg raises
Hang on a bar and lift legs slightly above horizontal.
Stand with feet just less than shoulder-width apart and knees slightly bent. Grasp a bar or dumbbells in your hands. Keeping your back straight and chest out, bend at the waist and lower the weight toward the floor. Use your glutes to pull yourself back up into starting position. It’s important you keep your back straight and knees slightly bent throughout the entire movement. You should feel a stretch in your glutes and hamstrings.