Let's be honest. You knew summer was coming, and yet you still didn't make it to the gym as much as you wanted to last month. Now there is a gay pool party every weekend, and you're trying to figure out exactly how many days you have left to give up carbs before the next one. Yes, there is no perfect beach body, but we all know there are certain things we notice when someone is in a skimpy swimsuit. Whether you like 'em slim, husky, or somewhere in between, a full chest, shoulders like boulders, a poppin' booty, and a toned midsection are on almost everyone's menu.
Hit these exercises hard before the next time you hit the beach, and you're sure to make your best impression. Even though you totally devoured that burger and fries last night ... with two beers.
1. Incline Chest Press With Dumbbells
Whether you have a big chest or not (mine is definitely on the smaller side), a strong upper chest makes it look bigger. And it's all about smoke and mirrors, isn't it?
Not all chest exercises were made the same. Chances are you're using a lot of other muscles to get those super heavy weights up instead of your chest. To start, take the incline only one step up from flat. This helps ensure you use you upper chest more,and not your shoulders. Puff up your chest as much as possible and roll your shoulders back. When you press, make sure to keep your upper back and rear deltoid against the bench and avoid any rounding in of the chest. Go as heavy as you can without compromising your form for three sets of 10-15 reps.
PRO TIP: You can increase the load on the muscle by playing with tempo. Try lowering the dumbbell for a slow three counts, then exploding up in one quick count. The deep V-neck T-shirt you got last weekend will thank you.
2. Spiderman Push-ups
Nothing delivers a pump better than a good old-fashioned push-up. Well, push-ups. And whoever is Madonna's dermatologist. Break free from your basic version and try this variation to not only add more unilateral work to your chest (that means one at a time), but get the added benefit of some core work as you go. As you lower your chest to the floor, bring one knee far outside to the elbow. Taking the knee to the side adds a little uneven weight, and your obliques and stabilizers are on fire to keep your balance. Push up and repeat on the other side for at least 15 reps (right and left is one rep).
PRO TIP: Elbows should go back 45 degrees from your shoulder when doing a push-up, not straight out to the side. From overhead your body should resemble an arrow, not a T shape.
3. Shoulder Press With Dumbbells
Full and round shoulders are essential for any beach bod. They widen your frame, make your waist look smaller, and give your friend something to cry on after that guy he met last night -- who he was totes sure he was going to marry -- never called back.
The good news is, a shoulder press works all heads of the shoulder, so you can really go hard with this one move when short on time. Bring the weights to your chest, with palms facing each other or toward your face. Open up in a half-circle motion reaching overhead. Don't lock out the elbow completely, keep your lower back down, and repeat for three sets of 10-15 reps.
PRO TIP: Test your strength and work your core by sitting off the bench instead of leaning against it. Chances are you won't be able to go as heavy, but that means you aren't using the bench to cheat the weight up.
4. Sumo Squat
I'm always shocked when I hear that guys don't like working legs. Did you know training legs is the best way to boost your metabolism, promote more lean muscle mass, and boost testosterone up to 40 percent? If you have no clue what you're doing, the one leg move you can't afford to miss is the sumo squat. It works the holy trifecta of legs (glutes, quads, and hamstrings) more than any other variation.
Standing on some steps, or plates more than twice your shoulder width apart, turn your feet out 45 degrees. A heavy kettle bell or dumbbell is best between your hands. Lower your booty as low as possible, making sure your knees stay behind the tips of your toes and point the same direction as your feet. As with any squat, sit back like you're sitting into a chair, and push through the heels as much as possible. Go as heavy as possible for at least three rounds of 10-15 reps.
PRO TIP: Make sure to engage your core and tighten your quads at the top of the squat. The more squeeze and control you have from beginning to end, the better.
5. Romanian Dead Lift
These days a bubble butt is practically a status symbol, and thick thighs can help round out that derriere. Make sure all of the boys look as you walk to the water, and burn those glutes and hamstrings with the RDL. You can use a barbell or dumbbells, also known as kettle bells. Start with shoulders rolled back and knees bent in a slight five-degree bend. Keeping your back in a neutral position, which is slightly arched, push into your heels and move your hips back to start. As you feel the intense stretch, lower your upper body, keeping your back arched and knees slightly bent. Pull your hips back under as you return to starting position, and repeat.
PRO TIP: Your goal is to get as much distance between your head and your seat, so reach those hips back like Ryan Gosling was standing behind you, and you have to bend over to pick something up.
6. Single Leg Bosu Bicycles
I'm not a fan of crunches or sit-ups, but if you love them and want to get the most out of them, grab a bosu ball. It's that funny half-round blue thing you always see at the gym. A recent study in Norway found that using a bosu ball during crunches, increased activation of the rectus abdominis by nearly 25 percent. For my core, I do any version of planking, with any exercise that requires me to move and stabilize my legs. This one's a killer. Lie on top of the bosu and bend one knee, placing one foot on the floor and extending the other one off of the floor. Simultaneously, take the opposite arm behind your head, and twist and crunch, bringing the knee to the elbow. Open all the way back up to a long extension, and repeat for 20 reps on each side.
PRO TIP: Keep your neck long and don't pull on your head as you crunch. This one should start to burn after only a couple reps. In a good way.
JASON WIMBERLY is a Los Angeles-based celebrity personal trainer, top-level Equinox instructor, and master trainer for Revolution Studios. With more than 10 years of experience in the fitness industry, Jason has taught sold-out classes across the country and keeps many of Hollywood's elite looking their best. WIMBERLEAN is his signature movement and DVD and launched in 2014, with a focus on creating long, lean bodies by utilizing his former training as a professional ballet dancer. To learn more about Jason, visit Wimberlean.com and connect with him on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube.
Photos courtesy of Benjamin Patterson, taken on location at Mansion Fitness. Wardrobe was provided by Stella McCartney for Adidas.