Friday, June 20, 2014

Tone Your Arms—In 10 Minutes!

How To Tone Your Arms
Shapely, sculpted arms are possible—at any age. All it takes is this 10 minute workout you can tailor to your fitness level. These four arm toning exercises work the chest, shoulders, and arms from every angle to tighten and firm the droopiness that can start when you lose lean tissue as you get older.

After a month of these easy exercises, courtesy of Kate Moran, a master trainer at Equinox fitness center in Chicago, you'll be on your way to show-off arms. 

Workout at a Glance

3- to 5-pound and 8- to 10-pound dumbbells and a mat or carpeted space

Perform the routine 2 or 3 times a week on nonconsecutive days. Begin with a 5-minute dynamic warm-up: March in place while scissoring arms overhead (like jumping jacks). For each exercise, do 2 sets of 10 to 12 reps (or 10 on each side, if appropriate). Rest 30 seconds in between sets. Begin with the Main Move. If it's too difficult, do the Make It Easier option. Not challenging enough? Try the Make It Harder variation. 

Do 3 sets and add 30 minutes of cardio workouts 3 to 5 days a week.

MAIN MOVE: Sit-Up Pullover

Lie faceup on floor, knees bent, feet flat, and arms extended overhead with a light dumbbell in each hand. Contract abs and slowly curl up, lifting head, shoulders, and back off floor. Simultaneously bring arms forward in an arc toward knees. Hold for a second, then slowly reverse to start.

Add a chest press. With upper body lifted and arms in front of you, bend elbows and lower dumbbells toward chest, then straighten arms before returning to start.

Keep head on floor as you raise dumbbells in an arc and bring them down to floor so arms rest at sides. Reverse to start.

MAIN MOVE: Overhead Triceps Extension

Stand with feet hip-width apart. Hold light dumbbell in right hand, arm extended straight overhead, left hand supporting right elbow (A) to prevent it from flaring out. Bend elbow, lowering dumbbell behind head (B), then press back up to start position. Do all reps, then repeat on opposite side. 

MAKE IT HARDERUse the heavier dumbbell. 

Hold the ends of a single dumbbell with each hand so it's horizontal to work both arms at the same time. 

MAIN MOVE: Single Arm Lateral Raise

Get into push-up position on knees, hands directly beneath shoulders with light dumbbell in left hand. Engaging abs to stabilize torso, raise left arm straight out to side, parallel to floor. Hold for a second, then slowly lower to start and repeat. Do all reps, then switch arms. 

Bring your knees off mat so you're balancing on toes and hands as you do the reps. 

MAKE IT EASIERDitch the dumbbell. 

MAIN MOVE: Hammer-Bicep Curl

Stand with feet shoulder-width apart, arms at sides, a heavy dumbbell in each hand, palms facing in. Bend left arm to 90 degrees, dumbbell vertical. Hold that position as you bend right arm and curl dumbbell to shoulder, keeping elbow in to side. Complete all reps, then lower both arms and repeat, holding right arm at 90 degrees. 

 Hold dumbbell in the stationary hand with palm facing up so it's horizontal rather than vertical. 

Alternate curling each arm up to shoulder without holding either arm stationary.

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