Training

Arms & Abs in a Flash!

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With bikini season just around the corner, now is a great time to start working toward your best body ever. The following exercises will target all three heads of your triceps muscle in addition to your chest, back, shoulders, and entire core. Remember to always prepare with the correct pre-workout nutrition and stay hydrated before, during, and after your workout. Get ready to tighten, tone, and firm your arms and abs without ever leaving your mat!

What You’ll Need:
Exercise Mat
5-10lb Dumbbell
Small Plyo Step

Dynamic Warm Up:
15 leg swings per leg
25 jumping jacks
15 lunges with a torso twist
25 pop squats
10 arm circles forward and backward

Arms and Abs Mat Workout:
Complete 3 sets of each of the following exercises, resting 30 seconds between each set.

1. Plank Pushup with Dumbbell Front Raise
Begin on your mat in a pushup position, hands slightly wider than shoulder width with a dumbbell in each hand. If you are a beginner, modify by placing your knees down on the mat and only adding weight if you feel safe. Be sure to keep your abs engaged throughout the exercise. Bend your elbows to lower down into a pushup, bringing your heart between your palms, and push back up. Extend your left arm forward into a front raise and lower back down. Repeat the pushup and front raise on your right arm. Alternate for a total of 10-12 reps on each side.

2. Walking Plank Drops
Begin on your mat in a full upright plank position, hands slightly narrower than shoulder width with your abs engaged. You can modify this exercise by dropping to your knees as necessary. Lower down onto your forearms, one arm at a time, into a modified plank. Walk back up into an upright plank and continue walking up and down for 60 seconds.

3. Traveling Plank
Begin in an upright plank position, back flat and abs engaged. From here, bring your right leg and right arm to the side and begin traveling right. Push off from your left arm and leg to complete the side step. Complete 10 sets of traveling planks in one direction then switch back to the other direction.

4. Planking Single Arm Side Lateral Raise
Begin on your mat in a pushup position, hands slightly wider than shoulder width with a dumbbell in each hand. Beginners can modify this advanced plank variation by placing knees down on the mat and only adding weight if the position feels safe. Extend your left arm all the way to the ceiling into a side lateral raise and lower back down. Let your gaze follow your working arm. Repeat on each side, alternating for a total of 10-12 reps on each side.

5. Get-Up Plank
Begin in a modified side plank (knees down) with your bodyweight shifted to your left forearm. Hold the dumbbell in your right hand with a bent elbow. Lift your hips so that your body is in a straight side plank. At the same time, straighten your arm and press the dumbbell toward the ceiling directly above your shoulder, holding for a three count. Keep your eyes on the dumbbell! Slowly lower your hips and working arm to the starting position. Repeat for 12 reps on each side.

6. Pilates Boxing
Start in a kneeling or standing position with feet or knees hip-width distance a part, knees slightly bent with a forward hinge in the waist. Put up your fists and start punching! Raise your fists to your shoulders and, keeping your elbows up, box your right hand forward. Bring your hands back to the center and switch. Alternate boxing on each arm for 30 seconds. Keep those abs tight the whole time!

 

Lauren is a fitness and nutrition professional located in Dallas, Texas. Lauren uses her own transformation story and life experiences to educate and inspire others through functional fitness, proper nutrition, meal planning and lifestyle coaching. Lauren is also a published writer and fitness model.

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