SIMPLE UPPER BODY MOVES Want quick exercise routines to use in training? If you’ve avoided upper body strength work until now, you might find motivation in these two simple sets from SHAPE.com. The site provides a pair of workouts that target the arms, especially the triceps, but also work the shoulders and back. Thus, they are advertised as being able to give you sexy-looking, ‘rock star’ arms.
Sure, shapely, toned arms are attractive, but “a strong upper body is as important as trained legs to run fast and easy,” states the subtitle to a Runner’s World magazine article, “A Call to Arms”*. Author Samantha Lefave explains that ”failing to train your upper body” can be detrimental to running and “hold you back big time”. Her article stresses lifting heavier rather than lighter weights, with fewer repetitions, and with good form.
Lefave suggests that if new to strength training, skip the heavy weights and first try bodyweight exercises that build the upper body, back, and core. The Mazzo workout in SHAPE.com (below) puts together a good starter routine. However, the RW article advice suggests that rather than hurry through the 5-minute, fast-paced bodyweight moves to get in as many as possible in 30 seconds (directions provided in the Mazzo workout, below) maintaining form is most important. Go as slow as is necessary; don’trush. Play the video and follow along; the demonstration takes you through 2 consecutive sets.
1. “At Home Arm Workout for Strong Arms” By Lauren Mazzo
Kym Perfetto does 2 repeats of a 5-component routine. Each move is performed for 30 seconds. Perfetto verbally stresses exercisers to pay attention to proper form, but in the heat of the demonstration she admits her own form suffers a bit in the enthusiastic video. Best not to hurry, moving slowly takes more effort and strength but will result in less chance of injury.
Bear crawls - 30 seconds
Triceps dips - 30 seconds
Push-ups - 30 seconds
Dive bombers - 30 seconds
Plank-ups - 30 seconds
The second workout uses dumbbell weights for the first 4 exercises and body weight for the last set. This set is perfect for following the advice in the Lefave article
2. Rock Star Dumb-bell Arm Workout
By Jessica Smith
Overhead press- 20 repetitions
Triceps chop- 20 repetitions
Inverted curl to front press- 20 repetitions
Rear fly to press back split stance, 10 each side
Diamond leg push-ups- 20 repetitions
The presence of women trainers in the videos should not dissuade men from paying attention. Especially if you’ve not added upper body exercises to your training. Sure, tougher moves are proposed in other male-specific resources, but starting with these saves you the time and effort of ‘shopping’ around for others. And they are designed to have you spend a relatively short time at this task.
With spring break approaching, a glance in the mirror may convince you that besides improved running, walking, and general fitness, the benefits to be gained from working these UPPER BODY STRENGTH routines include better looking arms.
RUN & MOVE HAPPY!
*the article is not generally available (free) online; I read it in the March 2018 print magazine.
RUN & MOVE HAPPY!
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EARNED RUNS is edited and authored by me, runner and founder. I began participating in road races before 5Ks were common. I've been a dietitian, practiced and taught clinical pathology, and been involved with research that utilized pathology. I am fascinated with understanding the origins of disease as well as health.
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