Your legs contain some of the biggest muscles of your body, so hitting them with compound (or multi-joint) moves through this superset session will work more muscle fibres, while at the same time raising your heart rate so that your body taps into body fat stores for fuel and gets to work on shedding your spare tyre.
Complete the a/b exercises as supersets.
Do 8-10 reps of each exercise (30-45 secs for the planks).
Rest for 60 secs at the end of each superset.
Repeat each superset for a total of 4 sets.
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Stand in front of a barbell. Squat down, keeping your chest up, and grasp the bar with an overhand grip.
Brace your core and push down through your heels to raise the bar off the ground.
Push your hips forward at the top.
The deadlift is one of the few moves that deserves a place in any weights workout. Not only does it recruit multiple muscle groups in your upper and lower body – including your abs – it also gets your heart pumping for fat-loss benefits.
1b. Good Morning
Stand tall holding a light barbell across the back of your shoulders, feet shoulder-width apart.
With your core braced, hinge forwards slowly from the hips, as far as your hamstrings allow but not past horizontal.
Return to the start.
This is an another often-neglected lift, but when done properly it works your entire posterior chain, which is the name of the group of muscles that run down the back of your body.
Stand tall with a bar across the back of your shoulders.
Keeping your chest up and core braced, squat down as deep as you can.
Drive back up through your heels to return to the start.
The squat, like the deadlift, works multiple muscle groups at once, especially your quads and glutes but also your core, which must work overtime to keep your upper body stable throughout every rep.
2b. Glute Bridge
Lie with your upper back supported on a bench, holding a barbell across the top of your thighs.
Thrust your hips up, squeeze and hold your glutes at the top, and then lower back to the start.
This lift will recruit the biggest muscles in your body, your glutes, as it forces them to lift and control the weight, as well as the deep-lying muscles of your core and lower back.
3a. Barbell Roll-Out
Kneel on the floor holding a barbell with both hands.
Roll the bar forward so you lower your torso, keeping your core braced.
Then use your abs muscles to return to the start.
Don’t be fooled: this is a very difficult exercise that requires serious abdominal strength. But learning to do it effectively will build a stronger, more stable and more defined midsection.
3b. Incline Gym Ball Plank
Start with your elbow on a gym ball with toes on the ground and your body in a straight line from head to heels.
Draw your belly button into your spine, keep your hips up and hold this position.
This isometric – or static – hold exercise will fully engage your entire core musculature as these muscles work hard to keep your entire body straight and stable.
4a. Hanging Knee Raise
Hang from a pull-up bar with your core braced and knees bent. Using your abs and keeping your knees together, raise your knees up towards your chin.
Hold this top position briefly, then slowly lower back to the start.
This is a move that is a lot harder to master than it looks, but doing so will take your abs training to a new level so that once you’ve shifted your spare tyre you have a brand new six-pack to showcase.
With hands clasped and elbows on the ground, raise your hips to form a straight line from head to heels.
Keep your core braced and glutes engaged throughout.
This classic isometric hold recruits all the major muscles of your abs and your deep-lying core, and keeping your glutes tensed will also work that muscle group as well as your lower back.