Blast Fat and Sculpt Your Arms, Shoulders, and Back With This At-Home Workout
It's costume party season, and you've likely got something sexy or daring in mind, right? Show off your sculpted shoulders, toned arms, and defined back in whichever costume you choose.
You have plenty of time to start this workout, and all you'll need is a pair of five-pound weights. Aside from feeling confident and toned, you'll also be getting stronger and doing something good for your body and brain. Try this circuit at home or at your gym!
Strengthen arms, tone the back, and (bonus!) tighten the core with this simple move. Form is important, so keep your spine straight!
- Begin in plank position with straight arms and legs. Your wrists should be directly below your shoulders. If this is tough to hold, rest one or both knees on the floor.
- Keeping your core engaged, inhale as you bend your elbows out to the sides, lowering your torso toward the floor. Keep your body in one straight line, and don't let your lower back sag or your hips hike upward.
- Exhale to straighten your arms, coming back to plank position. This counts as one repetition.
- Complete as many reps as you can, aiming for 20.
Target your shoulders and upper back while sculpting your arms. All you'll need is a light to medium set of hand weights (we'd suggest five pounds).
- Stand with your feet hip's distance apart. Hold a dumbbell in each hand so your palms face in toward the sides of your body.
- Start with the right side first. With control, keep your arm straight (but don't lock that elbow), and as you inhale, raise your right hand up toward the ceiling. You want your palm to be facing down and your arm to be parallel to the floor. Then, as you exhale, slowly lower your hand back to your body. You should be able to see your hand in your peripheral vision. So your arm won't be directly out to the side, but slightly forward.
- Do the same move with your left arm.
- Then do both your right and left arms at the same time.
- Continue these moves of right, left, together, right, left, together.
Target the back of your arms with triceps dips. You'll need a small ledge — you can use the side of your bed, coffee table, or a chair.
- Position your hands shoulder-width apart on a secured bench or stable chair.
- Slide your butt off the front of the bench with your legs extended out in front of you.
- Straighten your arms, keeping a little bend in your elbows to keep tension on your triceps and off your elbow joints.
- Slowly bend your elbows to lower your body toward the floor until your elbows are at about a 90-degree angle. Be sure to keep your back close to the bench.
- Once you reach the bottom of the movement, press down into the bench to straighten your elbows, returning to the starting position. This completes one rep.
- Keep your shoulders down as you lower and raise your body. You can bend your legs to modify this exercise.
Pick those weights back up to strengthen and tone your upper back with the Reverse Fly.
- Holding a dumbbell in each hand, stand with knees slightly bent. Keeping your back flat, bend forward at the hip joint.
- Exhale and lift both arms to the side, maintaining a slight bend in the elbows and squeezing your shoulder blades together. Then, with control, lower the dumbbells back toward the ground. This completes one rep.
Side Elbow Plank
Side planks are ideal for toning the arms (and a great way to whittle your waist!).
Reps: 30 Seconds Each Side
- Begin by lying on your side and bringing your right elbow to directly under your right shoulder. Stagger your feet so your left foot is just in front your right one. Engage your core, press your right elbow in into mat, and rise into side plank.
- Reach your left arm up toward the ceiling, which will help you lift your waist.
- Hold for 30 seconds, and work up to holding the position for one minute. Repeat on the other side to complete a set.
Shape shoulders and lean out your back with a hinged rowing move. Grab those weights!
- Lean forward and bend both knees, remembering to keep a flat back.
- Extend your arms so they are straight. Lift the dumbbells straight up to chest level, squeezing your shoulder blades together as you do. Be sure to keep your elbow in and pointed upward. Don't arch your back.
- Slowly lower the weights back to the starting position to complete one rep.
Set the weights down and lay down for a minute — but you're not resting! You'll continue to create definition in your shoulders with this move.
- Lie face down on your stomach with arms and legs extended. Keep your neck in a neutral position.
- Keeping your arms and legs straight (but not locked) and torso stationary, simultaneously lift your arms and legs up toward the ceiling to form an elongated U shape with your body — back arched and arms and legs several inches off the floor.
- Hold for two to five seconds and lower back down to complete one.
- Twelve reps completes a set.
Get those biceps in shape, too! This classic weight move is simple to do but challenging to get through all the reps. You can do it!
- Start by holding a dumbbell in each hand at the sides of the body.
- Keeping your elbows close to your side, slowly raise the dumbbells to the chest.
- Moving with control, lower back to the starting position.
- This counts as one rep.