Stephanie Thielen by Stephanie Thielen

Summer Boot Camp finishes up with the final workout of this three-part series: core conditioning. A toned and tight tummy can make you appear taller and slimmer, but more importantly a strong torso helps improve your posture and enhance athletic performance. Gain the confidence to rock your summer attire with the help of these exercises that hit your midsection from all directions.

This workout is quick, intense and gets straight to the point. All you need is a timer, a raised surface, such as a park bench or step, and one dumbbell. Complete all eight exercises in a circuit format, performing each exercise for 50 seconds and taking 10 seconds to transition to the next one. Once the circuit is complete, rest for 60 seconds and repeat all eight exercises again.

Double Crunch

Double Crunch

Begin lying on your back, feet on the ground and hands behind the ears. Exhale as you simultaneously curl your legs toward your chest and lift your shoulders slightly off the ground. Inhale and release back to the starting position.

Side Plank With Lateral Knee Lift

Side plank with lateral knee lift

Place hands on a raised surface, such as a park bench or step, and assume a high-plank position. Lift the right hand off the bench and rotate the body into a side-plank position. Bring the right elbow and right knee together at chest level and return back to the side plank position. Perform this exercise for 25 seconds on each side.

Standing DB Torso Twist

Standing DB Torso Twist

Stand with feet shoulder-width apart, knees slightly bent, holding a dumbbell in both hands with straight arms at chest height. Engage the abdominals and rotate the torso from right to left.

Mountain Climbers

Mountain Climbers

Assume a high-plank position with the hands underneath the shoulders and the abdominals engaged. With power and speed, drive the knees into the chest in an alternating pattern, keeping the toes hovering above the ground.

Double Leg Tuck to Pike

Double leg tuck to pike

Sit on a raised surface, such as a park bench or step, lean back slightly and place the hands behind the body for support. Lift both legs off the ground and bring the knees into the chest (tuck). Extend both legs out in front of you, parallel to the ground, and then lift both legs up toward the sky (pike). Lower the legs parallel to the ground and repeat the cycle of these two exercises.

Warrior Crunches

Warrior crunches

Stand with feet slightly wider than shoulder-width, toes turned outward. Place the hands behind the ears, keeping the back upright and the arms and chest open. Lower down so the thighs are parallel to the ground. Moving side to side, bring the elbows toward the tops of the thighs.



Begin lying on your back, hands behind your ears, and legs in table-top position at 90 degrees. Exhale as you simultaneously push your left leg out and bring your right knee into your chest as you bring your left elbow to meet it. Hold briefly and switch legs.

Standing DB Center Woodchopper

Standing DB Center Woodchop

Stand with feet shoulder-width apart, knees slightly bent, holding a dumbbell overhead in both hands. Keeping your arms nearly straight, engage the abdominals, squat down and swing the dumbbell toward the ground between your feet. Stand up using your glutes and reverse the swing, returning the arms overhead.

Below are the links to Part 1 and 2 of this series:

Summer Boot Camp: Arms Workout

Summer Boot Camp: Legs Workout


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