Sunday, June 13, 2010

Summer Series: See My Muscles

Ever notice how some people’s arms never seem to sag no matter how old they get? Those are arms that boys pray for, and women only dream of. We're still in our summer series and we're talking about killer arms today. You can get one step closer to your ideal arms by incorporating some of these exercises into your routine. Here goes!

Arm circles: Well, I like to call it swimmers’ circles. It involves circling your arms like a swimmer does in water. This exercise looks and sounds pretty easy, but when you get into it, you’ll feel that your arms are getting a pretty good workout. Stand up straight, and stretch your arms out on both sides of you, so you form a ‘T’. Make sure you stretch your arms, not have your elbows sagging down. Slowly circle your arms forward repeatedly. Note that you need small circles, not large ones, so a circle as big as your head is perfect. Do as many repetitions as you can, and then reverse the direction of the circles, so you can hit all muscles in your upper arms and shoulders. Do the same number of repetitions as you did for the forward motions. Here’s a picture that shows the position: Fitness Magazine.

Basic push-up: Presumably, we all know how to do a basic push-up/press-up. But again, it’s not so simple. Females tend to do it different from males because females tend to have less upper body strength. Here’s how it goes. Lie flat on your stomach. For the starting position, prop yourself up on your palms and raise your body off the floor. Your palms should be about shoulder-width apart. Keep your body as straight as possible (so your butt should not be sticking out or in) and tuck your stomach in. Your hands should be straight as well. Look to the ground because looking up can put unnecessary pressure on your neck. Slowly drop to the floor with control. Note that that weight of your body is still in your palms even in the down position. So you’re not dropping so far to the floor that your body touches the floor. Ladies, you can perform this exercise with your knees on the floor, but I encourage you to at least attempt some full push-ups. For a picture of the right starting and ending positions, visit

Bench dip: This works out your triceps. Although they are called bench dips, you can use a low chair or even your couch. Here’s how it goes. Sit on a bench with your palms on either side of you on the bench, fingers facing forward gripping the bench. Plant your feet on the floor. Slide your bum forward until it is off the seat. Keep your arms straight in the starting position. Slowly (with control) lower yourself down and bend your elbows. Lower yourself down until your elbows are level with your shoulders, and then raise yourself up again. Try to keep your body straight during this exercise as we have a tendency to slouch or raise our shoulders to our ears. Do as many repetitions as you can. Here is the starting position: Trainers Aid1 and the down position: Trainers Aid2.

As always, don't forget the three steps: cardio, weight training, and stretching. The fun thing about our bodies is that we serve as weight too. So we just need to find ways to utilize our body weight.

Disclaimer: I have to mention though that any exercise advice given here is just that: Advice. I am not a personal trainer or trained fitness instructor, and so I simply give suggestions from my experience. If you are uncomfortable with any advice given here, please seek a second opinion.

Till next week readers. Cheers!


  1. Thanks for these. Since we're not using weights, the arms shouldn't get muscular yeah? I used to lift weights (I know, what was I thinking?!) I got muscular arms, so I stopped, but the muscles then became flab, not I'm trying to get my arms back in shape.

    God help me to be diligent with these.

  2. Yes, the arms shouldn't get muscular, but you'll lose the flab. My favorite arm workouts are those without weights. A lot of push-ups and planks :)

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