We love body-weight workouts. And why not? A good one can sky-rocket your heart rate, burn a ton of calories, and help relieve stress. The downside: If you have zero equipment -- for example, no chinup bar -- you won't be able to work the muscles of your back. And that's a shame, since ignoring your back not only means you burn fewer calories, but it can also lead to poor posture.
The good news: A beach towel can help. By strategically positioning the towel, you can perform an isometric row -- an exercise in which you contract your back muscles hard and hold them that way. Plus, because you stand in a split stance, the exercise forces your hip muscles to contract hard, too. Read: Your glutes will burn! And if that's not enough, it's also a simple way to pump up your biceps -- which might come in handy if you're actually using the beach towel on the beach.
No, it doesn't look like much. But watch the video and then give it a try -- you'll probably be surprised. Try holding the position for 20 to 30 seconds, and then switch sides and repeat. Bonus: You can also use the towel to create a great ab exercise. Just wrap the towel around your body at your lower back, and get into the "up" position of a pushup, with one end of the towel anchored under each hand. Now hold that position for 30 to 60 seconds. The towel will be "pushing" your body toward the floor; your job is to resist letting it change your posture or moving you even an inch.
And if you're ready for a total-body transformation, you have to check out SPEED SHRED -- the first-ever DVD fitness program from Men's Health. With 18 workouts -- and hundreds of cutting-edge exercises -- this plan will change the way you train forever. All to get you lean, ripped, and shredded.
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