It’s about more than just appearances.
Do you lack upper body strength? Wish your arm muscles were more defined? Anyone, at any age, can have toned, sculpted arms. The benefits of a strong upper body are more than just how you look in a swimsuit.
Upper body strength is important for every stage of life and for many life tasks.
Why should you care about strong muscle tone in your upper body? What steps should you take to strengthen and sculpt this often-overlooked area of the body?
First, the Why
You walk here and there. You go up and down stairs. You may even go jogging on the treadmill. But what action does your upper body see each day? Working at the computer all day, sitting in front of the TV at night, or driving around in a car doesn’t give your upper body much of a workout.
Without proper stretching and strength building exercises, your upper body may quickly become tight, lose its range of motion, and potentially get injured.
It may be time to add arm, shoulder, and back exercises to your weekly exercise routine so the next time you rearrange furniture, reach up into the high cabinet to retrieve your holiday dishes, or rake leaves you’ll have the muscle and balance to get the job done safely.
A strong upper body also improves your posture. With good posture, you’ll enjoy improved breathing, circulation, and digestion, all while keeping your body aligned and giving you an armful of confidence.
A Balancing Act
The best exercise program for your arms should be a balance of cardio, strength training, and stretching. Along with your regular cardio exercise and stretching, spend 10 to 20 minutes every other day doing strength-training exercises that target all muscle groups including your arms, back, and shoulders.
But you’ll also need to balance how much you work certain muscles and areas of the body. Doing exercises to strengthen your quadriceps on the front of your thigh is a great idea, but if you neglect strengthening your hamstrings on the back of your thigh you’ll set yourself up for injury, pulled muscles, and even back pain.
The same goes for your arms. You may care more about your biceps since you can see them in the mirror, but don’t forget about the triceps on the back of your arms. These muscles work together. A strong, sculpted arm will have toned biceps and triceps.
Don’t Expect Miracles Overnight
If you expect a few days of strength training to uncover layers and layers of fat, think again. You will burn fat with these exercises, but the best way to burn calories and shed the pounds that hide your muscle is with regular cardio exercise and a healthy, balanced diet.
It’s also a false belief to think you can spot-reduce a targeted area of the body. Doing push-ups will not make your arms thinner. Sit-ups won’t melt away your belly fat. Weight loss in any area of the body is about diet and exercise. Don’t lose sight of the big picture.
To tone your arms and strengthen your upper body, you’re going to need some resistance. Find what you enjoy using, whether weights, elastic bands, your own body weight, or even canned corn for beginners.
Use a weight or resistance that will challenge you but not fatigue you. A two-pound weight probably won’t do much for most people, and 20 pounds may be too much for many. You can get the most out of your workout by pushing yourself with exercises that work several body parts at once.
And ladies, you don’t have to worry about bulking up. Men like this aspect of weight lifting, and they can bulk up a certain amount with relative ease. The way a woman’s body is designed, however, keeps muscles from becoming overly large.
Wondering what exercises will get your arms how you want them? Do your research or talk with your personal trainer about the best exercises to develop a beautiful, toned upper body.
If you live in the Gilbert area, treat yourself right by calling or emailing today to get started on an exercise program that will change your life for the best.
Proper nutrition plays a key role in your journey to a healthy lifestyle and to meet your fitness goals. Planning a well balanced diet can be extremely overwhelming and time consuming. That is why I have teamed up with Personal Trainer Food to help make it easy for you. Click here for more information and when prompted, please type Trainer ID# 8170. When you are ready, you may click here to place your order. The quality of the food is second to none.