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Stretch, Plank & Tone Up For That Special Occasion



So you have that event in a few weeks, the outfit has been chosen; you have the perfect image in your mind. However, your arms and thighs are not co-operating. Don’t worry. Here are some simple moves to incorporate into each day at least once and if you really really mean this project, repeat the workout twice a day, morning and night.

Warm up by rolling your shoulders; 10 rolls forward and 10 rolls backward.
Now stand, hip width apart and draw circles with your pelvis. 10 circles in one direction and 10 in the other direction.
Now we begin…

Knee Lifts- works your arms

This arm exercise is great for any fitness level as you are using your own bodyweight. You will see the effects of it after only a couple of times.

  • Come to your hands and knees, your arms under your shoulders and you knees directly under your hips – Form is very important.
  • Hold your stomach in though out- think body magic.
  • Take a breath in, and as you exhale, lift your knees 2 inches off the floor.
  • Take a breath in at the top and breathe out as you come back to the floor softly
  • Repeat 15 times for 1 set. Do 2-3 sets.


This move is great for streamlining the waist. It targets your core- lower back, pelvic floor, abs and obliques.

  • Inhale and Sit up tall and spread your legs out wide. Bring your arms up shoulder level keeping your shoulders relaxed.
  • Hold your stomach in  (think body magic)
  • If you are uncomfortable sitting like this, sit on a folded towel.


  •  Exhale and initiate the movement from your waist. Twist your torso to your left, then stretch forward and reach your little finger to your baby toe. Go back and forth 3 times like you are sawing your toe with your finger. Come back to start and repeat on the other side.

  • Don’t force the movement. Keep your bum and thighs heavy on the floor and stable by squeezing them.
  • Do 4 reps on both sides.


Walk plank

This works for the Core- Abs, obliques, Back & arms,

The Plank:  Start out on all fours, then slowly lengthen the spine and extend your legs behind you on the floor. Pushing your weight into the balls of your feet.

Spread your weight, hold your stomach in and breathe in and out evenly.

Exhale through your mouth and bring your right knee towards your left elbow and sqeeze your bum and hip as you bring your leg back.

Now bring your left knee towards your right knee. Repeat 5 times on both sides. Then 5 sets.

Now love your body and tone up for that special occasion.
Oyinkansola Talabi has been a fitness enthusiast for over 15 years and she is trained in Weight Management (FIE UK), Pilates ( Stott Pilates UK) and Kick boxing (Ian Fox training UK) and Performance coach ( Human Performance Institute USA). She has worked as a Personal Trainer since 2006 and founder of Bodyworks Personal Fitness Studio in Lekki Phase 1 opened in January 2009. The Studio offers personal training classes, fitness & nutrition consultations, daily group exercise classes and a personal Gym.

Oyinkansola Talabi – is trained in Weight Management (FIE UK), Pilates ( Stott Pilates UK), Kick boxing (Ian Fox training UK) and Performance coach ( Human Performance Institute USA). She runs Bodyworks Fitness (Female only) Studio in Lekki Phase 1, and MMB gym in Ikoyi, Lagos. Bodyworks and MMD offer group classes like Spining, Cardio and Dance classes, fitness & nutrition consultations, daily group exercise classes and a personal Gym. She also writes for The Saturday Guardian Newspaper and Eden Life blog. Her personal philosopgy is 'Love your body and it will love you right back' 08067784977


  1. kem

    September 13, 2012 at 10:59 am

    yayyy i like

  2. Laiza Lounge

    September 13, 2012 at 11:33 am

    Yayyy! I love pilates!

  3. janeth

    September 13, 2012 at 12:18 pm


  4. Nelo

    September 13, 2012 at 12:53 pm

    Thanks Bella for this…really a breath of fresh air to read an article about fitness.
    Oyinkan, pleease do you have any fitness videos one can workout with?

  5. belinda

    September 13, 2012 at 12:54 pm

  6. slimtemmy

    September 13, 2012 at 2:12 pm

    please can i get the video…

  7. Sabirah

    September 13, 2012 at 4:17 pm

    yaaay pilates!!

  8. brandigest

    September 13, 2012 at 4:34 pm

    Please let’s not try this only once but make it a routine,. i doubt if I can even do this more than one occasion. *just joking*

  9. konnie

    September 13, 2012 at 5:04 pm

    good good. Pilates helped me get back in shape after a knee injury. You must do it daily though.. good for your core

  10. lol

    September 13, 2012 at 7:21 pm

    thank you!! bella i really needed dis.. @nelo @slimtemmy go on youtube they have a lot!!

  11. jake

    September 13, 2012 at 9:16 pm

    usefull stuff

  12. Tunmi

    September 13, 2012 at 9:57 pm

    This is good, and the pictures were helpful as well.

  13. iamfascinating

    September 14, 2012 at 6:54 am

  14. may

    September 14, 2012 at 12:07 pm

    wow tanx its just d aspect i need 2 burn my fat.pls more stuffs like dis plzzzzzzz

  15. abisola

    September 16, 2012 at 7:33 pm

    Is nice but difficult to do.

  16. Sisiekomi

    September 16, 2012 at 8:08 pm

    Nice one!

  17. Nems

    September 17, 2012 at 12:13 pm

    Great post! Pilates it the best for a toned body, diet and exercise is also very important. Check out my blog for 10 tricks to stay slim all year round!

  18. Team Natural

    September 17, 2012 at 2:39 pm

    Great information. I have been trying to decide between Pilates and Yoga.

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