You may be wondering how Jessica Alba, the actress, entrepreneur and mother of three, manages to look as beautifully strong, lean and healthy as she does. There’s no doubt good genetics have helped with that, but it’s also because she makes working out a priority. A healthy diet, yoga classes, gym sessions and outdoor activities keep her in good shape for her demanding schedule. She told Self magazine that she’ll sacrifice sleep and wake up at 5:15 am to get a yoga class in. As part founder of The Honest Company, a natural baby and beauty line, she knows how important it is to make healthy choices for your family. Working out regularly allows her to be her best self both physically and mentally. Here is a lower body work out with moves Alba loves to do to get her strong, lean legs.
Walking Lunges– Stand up with your feet together and your hands on your hips. Step your left foot forward into a lunge. Try to get your left thigh parallel to the ground with your left knee over your left ankle and your right hip directly over your right knee. Don’t let your right knee touch the ground. Press up with your left foot to a straight leg and tap your right foot on the ground as you bring it next to your left foot. Repeat the lunge on the right leg to complete 1 rep. Do 20 reps continuing to walk forward in any direction with each lunge. Do 2 sets.
Resistance Band Side Steps– Place a resistance band around your ankles for this exercise. Stand with your feet hip distance apart, knees slightly bent and back straight. You may clasp your hands in front of your chest or place them on your hips. There should be slight tension on the band with your legs hip distance apart. Keeping tension on the band, step one foot out to the side and then bring the other foot in so that you’re back to your original position. Continue to step to one side 10 times and then repeat going to the other side to complete a set. Do 4 sets.
Skater Lunges– Stand on your right leg with your knee bent, left leg crossed behind your right either with your toes touching the ground or foot completely off and lean slightly forward with your torso. Extend your right arm out to your right side and bring your left arm across your body. Jump to your left onto your left leg, crossing your right foot behind your left leg and swinging both arms to the left. Keep your body leaning forward. From a bent left knee, jump to your right switching your legs and arms. Continue to go side to side until you’ve completely 10 skaters on each side. Do 3 sets.
Sumo Squat– Stand with your legs wider than shoulder width apart and turned out. Squat down until your thighs are parallel to the ground making sure your knees stay over your ankles. You may need to adjust the width of your stance. Clasp your hands in front of your chest and keep your back straight while you squat. Squeeze your glutes as you straighten your legs. Do 15 squats and then hold the last squat as low as you can go. From this position, lift your heels up as you balance on the balls of your feet and then lower your heels down. Do this 10 times before standing back up to complete one set. Do 3 sets.
Single Leg Bridge- Lie down on the ground with your legs bent and feet slightly apart. Lift your right leg straight up into the air in parallel. Keeping your arms on the ground by your sides, squeeze your glutes to lift your hips up into the air as high as you can without arching your back. Pull your navel into your spine and square off your hips. Lower your hips back down with control. Do 2 sets of 15 on each side.
Waking up at 5 am to work out isn’t for everyone. I prefer to sacrifice some down time while my baby naps and do a quick 20-30 minute work out in the afternoon. How can you make working out a priority in your life?
Also by Crystal: It’s Festival Season! This Endurance-Building Workout Will Get You Dancing All Night
These 5 Pilates Dumbbell Exercises Give You A Sculpted, Elegant Upper Bod
Get more like this—Subscribe to our daily inspirational newsletter for exclusive content!
Photo: Century Black via Flickr