Tighter Arms & Back
Well, we’re all into the time of year when there seems to be fattening food everywhere we look. One way to help combat the infamous Battle of the Bulge and still look good in any dress or tux you want to wear to your Holiday parties is to keep your upper body toned and strong.
This is a workout that can be completed in about 30 minutes, so you don’t have to spend a lot of time in the gym to look good (and how many people have lots of free time anyhow?).
BARBELL BICEPS CURL
Stand with your feet hip-width apart, knees slightly bent. Hold a barbell with an underhand grip beyond shoulder width in front of your thighs
Pull the barbell up toward your chin by contracting your biceps and bending your elbows. When you’ve come as high as you can, reverse the move and slowly lower the barbell back to the starting position.
Do two sets of 8 – 12 reps
Dumbbell Shoulder Press
Sit on a bench with your feet on the floor and your back against the pad. Hold a dumbbell in each hand just on the outside of your shoulders, making sure your arms are perpendicular to your torso. Your wrists should be directly above your elbows.
Contract your abs and push the dumbbells up and over your head until your arms are straight but not locked. Hold for a second, and then slowly lower to the start position and repeat.
Do two sets of 8 – 12 reps.
Place one knee and a hand from the same side of the body on the flat bench and hold a dumbbell in the opposite hand. Bend your body so it’s parallel to the bench. Bend your elbow to a 90-degree angle and glue your top arm to your side.
Slowly extend your lower arm backward. Avoid using momentum, and focus on straightening your arm backward slowly in order to fully train your triceps.
Do two – three sets of 10 – 15 reps for each arm.
Attach a narrow-grip handle on the low-cable pulley. Brace your feet against the platform and keep your knees slightly bent. Lean forward and straighten your arms to stretch your lats completely.
Really stretch into this position, then, as you drive your heals into the platform, pull the handle into your contracted stomach and sit up straight. Arc your back and squeeze your back muscles, holding for two counts to maximize the peak contraction.
Do two – three sets of 8 – 12 reps.
Just be sure and keep your diet clean, do at least four days of cardio activity for a minimum of thirty minutes each session, and you’ll have a much better chance of getting through the Holidays without weight gain!
Ann currently works for a Fortune 50 company as a Global Project Manager, and graduated Cum Laude with a degree in Psychology / Communications and Human Relations. She lives in Connecticut with her boyfriend and two adorable dogs, and completed her first Half Marathon and Duathlon last year.