Quick Workout for a Stronger and Leaner Core

These quick, targeted moves tone your entire midsection.

Love handles are a tricky area to target; sometimes it feels like they’ll hold on for dear life no matter how much you tone the rest of your body. The secret—other than good nutrition—is to perform a combination of moves that strengthen your core (like these three), rather than just going for the classic crunches. That’s exactly what this routine does, stringing together a series of moves with twists, crunches, and planks for a serious fat-blast. After running through three sets of each move, your abs and obliques will feel like they’re on fire—just be sure to engage your core the entire time to really maximize those results.

Bye-Bye Love Handles Workout

How it works: Run through each exercise as described, then repeat the entire workout 2 to 3 times. You’ll need a set of medium-weight dumbbells.

1. Standing Oblique Crunch

A. Start standing on left leg with right leg pointed out to the side and right arm reaching above head.
B. Crunch right elbow to right knee. Return to start.

Do 25 reps on each side.

2. Long Arm Long Leg Reach

A. Stand on left leg, knee slightly bent, with right leg pointed out to the side. Put your left hand on hip, right arm reaching above head.
B. Raise right leg and lower right arm to meet at hip height. Return to start.

Do 25 reps on each side.

3. Side Bend

A. Stand with feet hip-width apart, holding dumbbells in right hand.
B. Keeping core tight, bend at right hip reaching right hand toward ground. Return to start.

Do 15 to 25 reps on each side.

4. Side Lying Reach

A. Lie on the ground on right side with right arm reaching above head.
B. Raise left leg about 1 to 2 feet.
C. Raise right leg to meet left, lifting your shoulders off the ground and reaching left arm toward feet. Return to start.

Do 15 to 25 reps on each side.

5. Side Plank Hip Dip

A. Start in a right forearm side plank with left arm on hip.
B. Lower right hip to ground. Return to start.

Do 10 to 15 reps on each side.

6. Side Plank and Side Bend

A. Start in a right side plank with left foot in front of right and left arm reaching to sky.
B. Reach left arm above head while raising hips.
C. Lower hips and and reach left arm to sky.
D. Lift and square hips to ground, threading right arm under left to reach behind you. Return to start.

Do 8 to 10 reps on each side.

7. Forearm Plank Hip Dip

A. Start in a forearm plank.
B. Rotate core to lower left hip to tap ground.
C. Return to forearm plank.
D. Rotate core to lower right hip to tap ground. Return to start.

Do 16 reps (touching each hip to ground counts as 1 rep).

8. Knee to Elbow

A. Start in a full plank.
B. Bring right knee to right elbow.
C. Return to full plank.
D. Bring left knee to left elbow. Return to start.

Do 16 reps on each side, alternating sides.

9. Lateral Flexion

A. Start lying on the ground in a crunch position with knees bent, right arm behind head, and left arm reaching toward feet.
B. Crunch on left side to reach left hand closer to left foot.
C. Return to start.

Do 25 reps, then switch hands and repeat on right side.

10. Bicycle Crunch

A. Start in a tabletop crunch position.
B. Twist to bring left elbow to right knee while extending right leg.
C. Twist to bring right elbow to left knee while extending left leg.

Do 25 reps, alternating sides.