Last updated: May 18, 2009

To build even more calorie-burning muscle, kick your workout up a notch with these move progressions from our dream team fitness expert, Johanna Subotovsky.



AFTER ONE MONTH;
Replace Raised-Feet Push-Up with Single-Leg Raised-Feet Push-Up




A.Get into a plank position with hands on the floor and feet elevated on a bench or low chair. Activate your core by pulling your belly button in toward your spine and squeezing your butt muscles. Lift your left foot a few inches off the bench or chair.

B.Bend your elbows and slowly lower your body toward the floor, stopping when your elbows are at 90 degrees; press back up to starting position. (Make sure your core stays engaged throughout the entire movement, and dont let your lower back arch.) Do 2-3 sets of 12-15 reps.





Replace Forward Lunge with Elbow Extension with Forward Lunge to Balance with Elbow Extension


A.Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and abs drawn in. Holding a 5- to 8-pound dumbbell between your hands, raise it above your head. Keeping your body aligned, step your left foot forward and lower into a lunge, keeping most of the weight on your left leg. Dont let your left knee go past your toes. In the deepest part of the lunge, flex your upper body forward slightly from the waist and bend your elbows to bring the weight behind your head.



B.Push off with your left foot to rise to standing, balancing on your right foot, left leg lifted and knee bent so your thigh is parallel to the floor. At the same time, transfer the weight to your left hand and extend your elbow, lowering the weight until your arm is straight (dont lock your elbow). Return to starting positon and repeat on the opposite side; thats one rep. Do 2-3 sets of 12-15 reps.


AFTER TWO MONTHS:
Replace Alternating Resistance Row with Lateral Step with Leg Squat with Resistance Row



A.Secure one end of a resistance band to a column or handle of a firmly closed door. Stand with feet shoulder-width apart, looking straight ahead while gripping the resistance band with your left hand. Bend your left knee to lift the foot up and back.


B.Lower into a single-leg squat (dont let your knee go past your toes). As you return to standing, drive your left elbow back, keeping it close to your body and pulling your shoulder blade back toward your spine; you should feel a lot of tension in the band. Return to starting position and repeat on the opposite side; thats one rep. Do 2-3 sets of 12-15 reps.



Replace Dumbbell Alternating Shoulder Press with Squat with Dumbbell Shoulder Press


A.Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, hoding a 5- to 8-pound dumbbell in each hand at shoulder height, palms facing forward. Keeping your body aligned and abs tight, push your hips back and bend your knees slowly (as if about to sit in a chair), lowering yourself into a squat; your thighs should be parallel to the floor (or as close as you can get), with knees behind your toes.


B.Begin to rise back up; simultaneously, push the dumbbells up so your arms are fully extended (dont lock your elbows) as you reach standing position. As you begin to lower back into the squat, return the dumbbells to shoulder height. Do 2-3 sets of 12-15 reps.




AFTER THREE MONTHS:
Replace Cobra on the Ball with Cobra on the Ball with Alternating Arms


A.Kneel in front of a stability ball, resting your chest against it; hold a 2- to 3-pound dumbell in your left hand. Slowly roll forward until your legs are straight behind you, your arms hanging down.


B.Draw your belly button in toward your spine, squeeze your butt muscles, and tuck your chin as you begin to lift your torso off the ball. Slowly draw your shoulder blades down and back toward your spine; at the same time, rotate your left hand so your palm faces forward, then lift your left arm back and up so its parallel with your straight body. Return to starting position and repeat on the other side; thats one rep. Do 2-3 sets of 12-15 reps.





Replace Mountain Climbers with Plank with Hip Extension

Lie face-down on a mat with feet together, toes tucked, forearms on the ground, and hands forming fists. Draw your belly button in toward your spine, squeeze your butt muscles, and lift your body until it forms a straight line from head to toe (your elbows should be directly under your shoulders). Without letting your hips sag, raise your left leg and hold for 15-30 seconds (or as long as you can). Return to starting position, then repeat on the other side; that's one rep. Do 2-3 reps.




AFTER FOUR MONTHS:
Replace Single-Leg Raised-Feet Push-Up with Stability Ball Push-Up


Get into plank position with hands on the floor and shins and feet on a stability ball. Activate your core by pulling your belly button in toward your spine and squeezing your butt muscles. Bend your elbows and slowly lower your body toward the floor, stopping when your elbows are at 90 degrees; press back up to starting position. (Make sure your core stays engaged throughou8t the entire movement, and don't let your back arch.) Do 2-3 sets of 12-15 reps.




Forward Lunge to Balance with Elbow Extension with Forward Lunge to Balance with Bicep Curl

A.Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and abs drawn in, holding a 5- to 8-pound dumbbell in each hand. Keeping your body aligned, step your left foot forward and lower into a lunge, keeping most of the weight on your left leg. Dont let your left knee go past your toes. In the deepest part of the lunge, flex your upper body forward slightly from the waist and curl the weights up toward your shoulders.



B.Push off with your left foot to rise to standing, balancing on your right foot, left leg lifted and knee bent so your thigh is parallel to the floor. At the same time, lower the weights back down (dont lock your elbow). Do 12-15 reps, then switch legs and repeat. Do 2-3 sets.





AFTER FIVE MONTHS:
Replace Dumbbell Shoulder Press with Squat with Scaption


A.Stand with feet shoulder-width apart, holding a 3- to 5-lb dumbbell in each hand.



B.Keeping your body aligned and abs tight, raise your arms out to the sides so that they are even with your shoulders, palms facing forward. Slowly return to starting positiong. Do 2-3 sets of 12-15 reps.





Replace Leg Squat with Bungee Row with Standing Row with Rotation

A.Secure one end of a resistance band to a column or handle of a firmly closed door. Stand with feet shoulder-width apart and knees slightly bent; with your right hand, grip the resistance band, keeping your wrist, elbow, and shoulders aligned with the band. Draw your belly button in toward your spine.



B.Draw your right shoulder blade in toward your spine and pull your right elbow straight back; at the same time, rotate your body to the right, allowing your right knee to bend a little more. Do 12-15 reps, then switch sides and repeat. Do 2-3 sets.


AFTER SIX MONTHS:
Replace Cobra on Stability Ball with Alternating Arms with Dumbbell Pull-Over




A.Holding an 8- to 10-lb dumbbell with both hands, sit on a stability ball and slowly roll down until your head, neck, and shoulders are on the ball with both feet on the ground. Make sure your hips, knees and toes are in alignment. Lift the dumbbell until it's directly above you.




B.Bring your arms overhead, lowering the weight until it's in line with your body. Slowly lift the weight back up. Do 2-3 sets of 12-15 reps.



Replace Plank with Hip Extension with Side Plank



Lie on your right side with legs on top on one another, your right elbow directly underneath your right shoulder for support. Keeping your body completely aligned, draw your abs in and lift your hips to raise your body off the floor. Hold this position for 10 -15 seconds, then lower back down to the floor and repeat on the other side; that's one rep. Do 2-3 reps.