Leg exercises

Lovebug, sometimes I just need a little extra motivation.

If you read our Classy Chassis story a few weeks ago, you’re already well on your way to getting your arms party ready for spring’s sleeveless styles. Now, it’s time to focus on our glammy gams.

Once again, we sought the advice of Tanya Becker, the fabulous co-founder of fitness studio Physique 57, which counts Demi Moore and Kelly Ripa among its clients. Knowing that we Sallies are a busy bunch, Tanya broke her workout down to the three best exercises for getting legs into Betty-Grable shape. We’ll drink to that.

Physique 45The Curtsy

Works: Balance, core strength, back muscles, entire lower body

Reps: 30-60 slow and quick pulses; repeat on the second side

Set-Up and Execution: Start with feet in a small “V” position (heels glued together and toes two inches apart) with your hands resting lightly on a sturdy piece of furniture. From there, incline your body forward at a 45-degree angle. Bend your knees, lift your right heel up, and slide your right leg back about two feet behind you, crossing your body so that your right foot is on the floor lined up behind your left shoulder. Keep your back heel high and your front foot flat. Lower your back knee towards the floor and lift an inch from there, slowly then fast. Keep your hips and shoulders squared forward and the front knee stable over the ankle as you bend your back knee down. Switch legs and repeat.

Why Tanya likes it: “This is an inner and outer thigh jiggle blaster! And the bonus is that it also works your core.”

Physique 53Thigh Dancing (Pulsing, Hip Shakes and Hip Circles)

Works: Thighs

Reps: 15 pulses, 15 hip shakes, 15 hip circles in each direction

Set-Up and Execution: Start in a kneeling position with your knees hips width apart and your seat on your heels. Lift your seat off your heels just an inch, reach your arms to the ceiling and begin a small lift and lower ensuring that you keep your seat OFF your heels the whole time. After 15 small lifts, start to shake your hips from side to side adding a pull of your arms from elbow to hip. Finish with hip circles while the arms lasso overhead. Throughout all the variations, try to keep your shoulders slightly behind your hips for an intense burn.

Why Tanya likes it: “It’s the best way to scorch calories off your thighs and stoke your metabolic rate.”

Physique The Swivel Chair

Works: Thighs and waistline

Reps: Pulse 16-32 times on each side or until you start to feel the burn

Equipment: A waist-high, sturdy piece of furniture or a barre

Set-Up and Execution: Stand a forearm’s distance away, facing your furniture with your feet, knees and thighs together. Place your hands on your furniture a bit wider than shoulder-width apart. Keeping your upper body facing forward, rotate both feet and hips to point in the direction of your right hand. Lift your heels a couple of inches off the floor and bend your knees to a challenging level about 5 or 6 inches down. Keep your shoulders squared forward and your feet and thighs together. This is your starting position. Bend your knees deeper and begin to perform small pulses up and down. Remember, this is a small, controlled movement of only about two or three inches. Look straight ahead and keep your abdominal muscles pulled in so that your body weight stays forward and your tailbone is pointing toward your heels. Repeat on the other side.

Why Tanya likes it: “After doing this move, you’ll easily slide into a pencil skirt and feel sexy and confident wearing it!”

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