Six exercises for a summer-ready body

Getting toned is not easy. But with the pressure to get your body bikini ready you don’t have a choice. Nicolette Dirk asks some fitness experts what the most effective exercises are that will tone you up in no time.

1.)   Lunges

According to reports lunges are how Jessica Alba and Eva Longoria maintain their tight physiques. And Leigh van Heerden, biokineticist for Virgin Active, highlights it as one of the most effective exercises to lose weight. Besides its effectiveness, you won’t need expensive machines to get moving.

“Some examples of larger muscle group exercises that incorporate your own body weight and no equipment are lunges, push ups, squats and calf raises,” says Van Heerden.

2.)   Step ups

Van Heerden adds step-ups to her list of exercises to include for a full body workout.  “You get a full body workout by including some upper and lower body strength exercises (like push ups and lunges) and cardiovascular activity (like step ups or walking) and finishing the session with some stretching,” says Van Heerden.


3.)   Push ups

Described by Van Heerden as a good upper body strength exercise, push-ups is also one of the most effective exercises to tone up for summer.

Biokineticist, Erin Martin, says that what makes this exercise so effective is that in one push-up you get to exercise your biceps, triceps and calves in one go.

4.)   Squats

Squats is an example of a of larger muscle group exercises that incorporate your own body weight and no equipment. Martin says what makes this exercise so great is that when you don’t use machines, you are working against your own body weight, which makes the weight loss process more effective.

 5.)   Bicep curl

Van Heerden says a bicep curl is also one of the best ways to shape up your arms. According to, it is important to focus on biceps when it comes to slimming your arms. And what makes bicep curls effective is that they are easy to do and you can start small with light weights and gradually work your way up to heavier weights.


6.) Tricep dip

Van Heerden says you should use your own body weight for strength training if you don’t have weights or equipment. “For example, you can do tricep dips while using a chair or your bed for support,” says Van Heerden.


Moneybags says:

Activate your core first. Before starting off any exercises, make sure that your posture is correct. This is important to help avoid injury.

Every little bit counts. Not fitting in a structured workout? Just playing tourist and walking around more than you usually do beats sitting in an office all day long. Good for you!

Emile Solomons, personal trainer and co-owner of n2 Fitness, says the best resistance exercises to lose weight are ‘compound exercises’. This is where you use more than one joint, therefore more muscles will be used and consequently you burn more calories. “Also, when you are looking to lose weight, you will have to mix it up with abs exercises in between and also vary your cardio exercises,” says Solomons.

Martin, adds that there is no actual secret to reducing fat mass. “Make sure you do enough cardiovascular exercises that will increase you heart rate. This needs to remain elevated for the desired period per session of 150min per week,” says Martin

She adds that you should also add resistance training to your weekly regime. This needs to be done every second day. If you maintain some sort of regime, there will be fat loss. An increase in intensity with this regime will increase fat loss.

“But, remember we cannot continue to eat as we please. Maintain a good healthy diet with the recommended amount of exercise and results will be met,” says Martin.