One of my main goals is to have toned arms. It seems like when I lost weight, my arms stayed the same and didn’t really get smaller. I recently had one training sesh with a personal trainer at my gym and picked up an arm routine that I hope will help you guys as well! 🙂
These arm exercises are supersets, meaning you will be going back and forth between exercises (usually between two different muscle groups). In arm workouts, this means going back and forth between biceps and triceps. One set of biceps, one set of triceps, one set of biceps, one set of triceps, etc. You get the idea!
1. Supersets – Dumbbell curls & tricep overhead extensions. 5×10 (5 sets, 10 reps each)
Raise a dumbbell in each hand over your head. Bring them back either behind your head or next to your head, with your elbows pointing forward still, then raise them back up. If your elbows move outward too much, your triceps won’t be getting a workout.
2. Supersets – Bicep cable curls (with the curved bar) & tricep cable pulldowns. (3×10)
These bicep curls using the cable machine are by far the most challenging bicep exercises I have tried! The key to getting an effective burn is to not drop your elbows at all. When you are in the first position with your arms holding the bar, you want to keep your elbows at that same level, bringing your forearms up. That way you are really only working your biceps.
I use a straight bar for the tricep pull downs. You should start at a height that provides some resistance when you pull the bar down to the starting position. When you start, your arms should be at a 90 degree angle. Push the bar down, while engaging your triceps and hold it there for one second, then release back up to the 90 degree angle position. (Also, I don’t like using the rope because with the rope, you tend to lean forward into it, whereas with the straight bar, you can control that better and continue standing up straight, which will allow you to only use your tricep muscles.)
3. Supersets – Barbell curls and skullcrushers. (3×10)
These are called skullcrushers because you bring the barbell down to your head, or over your head. I prefer to bring the barbell past my head for a bigger stretch in my triceps. Start with the barbell above your head, then raise it all the way up till your arms are straight, then bring them back down to the starting position. Remember to keep your elbows pointing forward instead of moving them outwards.
4. Supersets – Bicep curls and tricep crossovers on the cable machine. (3×10)
The handles should be touching the ground before you pick them up. Pull on the handles till you feel a little resistance, and that will be your starting position. I do this while balancing on one leg to help my core also. Pull the handles up till your arms are at a 90 degree angle, then bring them back to the starting position.
This looks a bit complicated, but all you do is take your right arm, reach over to the left cable (cables should be positioned high, but within reach), put your hand through the loop of the handle, and grab the ball that’s attached to the cable. Do the same thing with your left hand – cross your left arm over and reach for the right cable, putting your hand through the loop of the handle and grabbing the ball. Once you have both arms in position, extend both arms outwards. You should only be extending your forearm out to work your triceps – try to minimize the movement of your entire arm.
Here is my workout in a video format: