It’s hard not to scroll through social media and feel envious of influencers’ seemingly perfect physiques. While there is often photoshopping and exceptionally good lighting involved, many of these women really do lead active, healthy, and empowering lives. I endeavored to try these models’ workouts over the course of a week to see if any of them worked for me.
The first routine I tried isn’t for any specific model, but is instead advertised as one of the Victoria’s Secret models’ workouts used by many of the angels. Given all their lingerie work, I was excited to try this 20-minute routine. The workout doesn’t start with a formal warm-up, but the first few moves do seem to emphasize stretching and getting your heart rate up slightly. As the difficulty increases, the instructor provides fun commentary and tries to motivate viewers throughout. This was interesting to listen to the first time around, but it would probably be frustrating to hear her runway show feedback if you played the video out loud each time you did it. Listen once for helpful tips on form, but the mute button might be your friend if you want to make this routine a regular in your life. After completing the challenging routine, I’d definitely recommend it as you don’t need much space or equipment and it includes a few fun moves I hadn’t seen before (like a Russian twist with a crunch in the middle that burned like crazy).
Link to workout: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5pAf6C52z-m
Gigi Hadid’s routine works out your entire body without needing any gym equipment or hours of free time. This was one of the only routines to start off with a warm-up which I felt helped me get into the workout head space and stretch my legs out in particular. The bulk of the workout seemed to touch on arms/biceps, abs, and legs/glutes with about two exercises dedicated to each area. I liked the variety, but definitely struggled with the arm related exercises as I don’t have any strength built up there currently. While I hated struggling through these sections, this workout might be a better choice for me as it does force me to improve those areas and build new muscle. The final part of the workout was absolutely brutal, with two of my least favorite exercises placed back-to-back: burpees and mountain climbers. While I was grateful there was only one set of this cardio and core section, I was still exhausted by the end and felt convinced that Gigi had earned her abs. This was my least favorite of the models’ workouts because it was the hardest, but that probably doesn’t mean I should avoid it.
Kendall Jenner has an incredibly toned stomach, which is likely due to genetics more than this quick, 11-minute ab workout. Nonetheless, for my next workout I endeavored to attempt her ab routine and found it surprisingly manageable. While Kendall turns to this routine when she has a few minutes to spare or for days when she is too busy to hit the gym, you can easily work it into your daily routine to start chiseling out your own abs. The routine is heavily plank based and each exercise only lasts for 30 seconds. The best part? You only have to do each exercise once before moving on, unlike rep-heavy routines that can feel demoralizing. I felt great after doing this, but would probably need to pair it with some sort of cardio to feel it was a valid workout for the day.
American model Alexis Ren has a beautifully toned body, and after completing this workout I can see why. Ren’s setup feels similar to Jenner’s ab workout in that you do thirty seconds of each exercise without having to worry about multiple reps. To compare the two, this routine had many of the same exercises with a few additional moves to work the rest of your body, making it lengthier but also definitely more of a full-body workout. They may both be advertised as ab workouts, but I felt Ren’s moves in my glutes, legs, and even arms. If you have a little extra time, I would opt for this over Jenner’s simpler version for a more intense workout.
Victoria’s Secret angel Elsa Hosk has to look good in lingerie year round, and it takes a whole lot more than four little exercises to achieve such a toned look. However, she discussed and demonstrated four moves that she uses to get her abs in shape for the runway. I thought these moves were the most interesting of any of the workouts, largely due to their Pilates-inspired movements. Instead of sticking to the planks and crunches of many models’ workouts, Hosk’s routine utilizes movements that require a great deal of flexibility, balance, and strength. You will need a Pilates ball for one of them, but it’s worth the investment if you can see yourself making these dance-like moves a part of your weekly workout. It took some time to learn these exercises, especially as I was trying to ensure I had good form, but once I got going they ended up being challenging and fun, without leaving me totally winded. While I couldn’t do just four exercises and feel as though I’d fully worked out on any given day, I definitely plan to incorporate these moves into a larger workout plan in the future.