Brazilian beauty, Alessandra Ambrosio, is no stranger to the catwalk. She started modeling at the age of 15 and is best known for being one of Victoria’s Secret Angels. Genetics have a lot to do with her smoldering looks and physique, but Alessandra still needs to do her part to maintain a runway-ready body. Justin Gelband, celebrity trainer and co-owner of ModelFIT studios, is the official trainer for the Victoria’s Secret Angels. He shares Alessandra’s amazing full body lengthening and strengthening routine on the “Train Like an Angel” series by Victoria’s Secret. You can do these moves to effectively tone every muscle without building bulk.
I am in my second trimester of pregnancy and I love how all of these low impact moves are completely safe to do while pregnant. Justin also includes a warm up/stretch routine before his workout to prepare your body. Here are the exercises he gives to models like Alessandra to get into shape before a runway show. Add a weighted ball or dumbbell (1-5 lbs.) in your hands for an extra challenge. For each move, start with 5 reps on each side and build up to 20 on each side.
Step Back Reach– Elongate the anterior side of your body and open up the hips as you do this stretch. Stand with your feet together in parallel. Step your left foot back as you lunge down on your right leg and reach your left arm up to the sky. Look up at your left hand and continue to lengthen through the front of your stomach and through your fingertips. You can leave the opposite hand by your side or place it on the opposite thigh for support. Take a breath in this position before bringing your feet back together and repeating on the other side.
Torso Rotations– Continue to warm up and stretch the arms, back, abs, and hips by stepping to the side with your left foot while rotating your left arm to the right. Keep your rotating arm rounded and about shoulder height. Allow your hip to rotate slightly but you want to create gentle resistance to feel the stretch. Step your left foot back in and repeat on the left side.
Side Stretch– The last stretch in the warm up will lengthen your entire side body. Step back at a diagonal with your left foot behind your right. Press the left heel down to straighten the left leg as you slightly bend the right knee. Reach your left arm up and over your head as you stretch to the right. Place your right hand over your left oblique to feel the muscles lengthening. You may look up towards the top hand. Come back to center and repeat on the other side.
Reverse Lunge– Hold the weight in your left hand and stand with your feet together. Keeping your abs engaged and your back straight, take a big step back with your left foot into a lunge position. Your right leg will bend without allowing your knee to pass your toes and your left hand will rise straight up to shoulder height. Keep your back heel lifted and return to center.
Lunge Pulses– Stay in lunge position with your left leg extended back. Hold the weight in both hands straight out in front of your chest. Bend both knees to lower about halfway down to the ground. Slowly rise back up until the back leg is straight again. Continue to slowly pulse down and up without letting the arms drop. You should feel your core, legs and shoulder muscles working.
Lunge Rotations– From a stationary lunge position, hold your arms straight out with the weight at shoulder height. Without moving your legs, rotate your torso diagonally down to each side, allowing your arms to drop slightly below your chest. Move through your abdominals to rotate to each side with control. Switch legs halfway through your set.
Squat Pulses– Stand with your legs hip distance apart. Bend your arms holding the weight at shoulder height. Squat down keeping your weight on your heels and your back upright. You should be able to wiggle your toes. Pull your abs in. Straighten your legs just enough to come up slightly, keeping tension the entire time on your glutes and thighs. Continue to pulse up and down slowly. Don’t come back up to a full standing position until you are done with your set.
Criss Cross Knee Ups– Get into a squat position with your legs a little wider than your shoulders. Keep the elbows bent at shoulder height with the weight in your hands. As you come up from your squat, lift your right knee up as you twist your torso to the right. Your elbows will lower slightly so that your knee can come up in between your elbows. Return to your squat as you center the arms and repeat on the other side.
Now anyone can train like a Victoria’s Secret Angel! Who’s your favorite Angel?
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Photo: Alexandra Ambrosio via Instagram; Video: Crystal Chin