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20-Minute Toning with Resistance Training

The American Diabetes Association recommends people with type 2 diabetes do resistance training two or three times a week for 20-30 minutes a session. Here's a fast, easy workout to meet that goal.
  • Tips to Get Toned

    Exercises that incorporate resistance bands, dumbbells, weight machines, or even your own body weight are considered resistance training. If you're working out with dumbbells, start with 2- to 3-pound dumbbells and work up to 5 pounds. Ten pounds is plenty for most people. If you don't have dumbbells, grab a couple bottles of water or cans of food to get started.

  • Standing Shoulder Press

    Targets: Shoulders, back, quads, glutes, and hamstrings
    Reps: 5-10
    Total time: 3 minutes

    Step A: Stand with feet shoulder-width apart, knees slightly bent, holding 1- to 3-pound dumbbells at shoulder height with palms facing forward and wrists straight. Keep abs tight and body weight on heels without allowing knees to move past your toes.

    Step B: Stand up, pushing through heels as you extend arms, bringing weights together above head. Hold for one count.

  • Slight Lunge with Bicep Curl

    Targets: Biceps, glutes, quads, hamstrings, and core
    Reps: 5-10
    Total time: 3 minutes

    Step A: Stand with feet hip-width apart, holding 3-pound weights with arms at your sides. Step your left foot behind you, slightly bending knee; keep your right knee aligned over right ankle. Press your arms behind you so you're holding the weights a few inches from your back.

    Step B: Curl weights toward shoulders, keeping elbows close to sides, palms up and turned out slightly. Return to starting position. Do the given reps, then switch sides.

  • Modified Power Jump

    Targets: Abs, glutes, hamstrings, quads, and calves
    Reps: 5
    Total time: 2 minutes

    Step A: Stand with feet shoulder-width apart, arms at sides. Squat down by slightly bending your knees.

    Step B: Keeping your back straight, perform a little jump as you rise, using your arms to help you.

  • Wall Push-Ups

    Targets: Shoulders, chest, and core
    Reps: 5-10
    Total time: 3 minutes

    Step A: Begin in a standing push-up position, hands placed against the wall and palms under shoulders. Legs should be extended with feet placed comfortably on the floor; keep abs tight and head in line with spine. (If you like, put a mat on the floor so your feet don't slip.)

    Step B: Lower chest toward the wall, flexing elbows and keeping abs engaged; press back to starting position.

  • Triceps Kickback

    Targets: Triceps
    Reps: 5-10
    Total time: 2 minutes

    Step A: Sit on the edge of a firm, straight-back chair. Hold 3-pound weights with elbows at 90 degrees, forearms parallel to your upper legs and next to your hips.

    Step B: Lean slightly forward from your hips while staying seated in the chair, and extend your forearms back, straightening the elbow joint and contracting the triceps muscle on the back of each arm. Hold for one count and return to starting position.

    TIP: Sitting in a chair while doing this exercise helps you focus on isolating the triceps, which can be tricky muscles to tone.

  • Bent-Knee Crunch

    Targets: Abs
    Reps: 10-15
    Total time: 3 minutes

    Step A: Lie on your back on the ground, with legs extended at a 90-degree angle, hands behind your head with elbows out to sides.

    Step B: Use your stomach -- not your neck or arms -- to raise your head and shoulders from the ground. Hold for one count and return to starting position.

  • Modified Plank

    Targets: Shoulders, chest, and core
    Reps: 1
    Total time: 2 minutes

    Begin in a plank position, forearms on the ground with elbows under shoulders and knees resting on the ground. Keep your abs tight, forming one long line from the crown of your head to your knees. Hold for 1 minute (or as long as you can), keeping abs engaged and hips neutral.

  • Standing Windmill

    Targets: Abs and obliques
    Reps: 5-10
    Total time: 2 minutes

    Stand with feet just wider than shoulders, toes turned out slightly. Slowly bend torso to the right, bringing right arm toward the ground and left arm toward the sky. Hold for one count and return to starting position. Do the given reps, then switch sides.

  • Resistance Training Resources

    Resistance training is important because it builds muscle, and that's what burns glucose during exercise. Visit these links for more information about resistance training and how to increase your physical activity to lose weight or maintain weight loss.

    14 Ways to Get More Exercise

    The Benefits of Resistance Training

    Take the 28-Day Healthy Living Challenge

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