A better body in half the time – meet the exercise Power Couples

Newsflash: the key to a better body isn’t doing more exercise, it’s doing different exercise. “Split workouts 50/50 between cardio (to improve heart and lungs) and strength work (to build muscle) and you’ll burn calories and define your body faster,” says trainer Tim Weeks. High five to that! Here’s our pick of the best workout two-for-ones.

Running + Pilates

Description: Running + Pilates

“Running strips body fat and increases metabolism, but it’s high impact, so can bulk muscles,” says fitness expert Lucy Wyndham Read, author of The Fitness Book. “Pilates is low impact and stretches muscles, helping to sculpt your body and build core strength. And, for runners, a strong core means less risk of injury.” For extra oomph, suck in your abs while you run. “This force your posture into a better position, activating more muscle fibres in your bum,” adds trainer Ali Campbell.

Swimming + toning

Description: Swimming + toning

“As swimming is non-weight-bearing, combine it with a toning routine,” says Wyndham-Read. “Any exercise that uses weight press-up, squats or a circuit class results in stronger muscles and bones, which also helps prevent osteoporosis.”

Spinning + Hatha yoga

Description: Hatha yoga

Hatha yoga

“Spinning burns loads of calories, but it often tightens up the hips,” says personal trainer Dan Roberts. “Hatha yoga burns hardly any calories, but opens up the hips. Go to some classes to get the idea, then do it yourself after a Spinning class.”

Lunges + rorations

Description: Lunges + rorations

Lunges + rorations

“Lunges are brilliant, but add in a 450 rotation of your upper body and they become a core-activating, side-firming exercise,” says Roberts. “As you lunge down with your right leg, rotate your upper body to the right but keep your hips facing forwards. Rotate back, stand up, then repeat on the left leg. Do four sets of 12 every other day and you’ll see a difference in eight days”

Tennis + ballet

Description: Tennis + ballet

“Pick a heart-pumping activity (such as tennis, rowing or boxing) and add an exercise that helps you control your body, such as ballet, rock climbing, yoga or Tai Chi,” says Weeks. “The first one gets your body physically fit; the second helps to stabilise the pelvis and spine vital for any fitness activity.”

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