Be Well Workout of the Week: Sculpt Your Upper Body in 8 Moves

Ready, set, sweat!

This workout is going to target your upper body in just eight moves. To complete the workout you are going to work with four pairs of exercises, doing each pair for the assigned number of reps five times through before moving on to the next pair.

And to all you speed demons out there: This workout is not cardio-based, so make sure you focus on using good form and the appropriate weight so that each set is a challenge, rather than powering through it as fast as you can.

Instructions: Complete designated reps of each pair five times before moving on to the next pair. 
Pair 1
10 push-ups
15 seated band rows

Pair 2
10 bicep curls
15 Squat with overhead press

Pair 3
10 pullovers on a physioball
15 chest fly

Pair 4
5 pull-ups
10 lunge row (do 10 on each side.)

Explanations of exercises
Click links for how-to videos. 

Push-up: Start lying face down with your chest on the floor, with hands facing forward and palms down in line with your shoulders; elbows should be pointing back. Push up until arms are extended (the inside of the elbow should be facing forward) and drop back down.

Seated band rows: Sitting on the floor with legs together and straight out in front of you, loop a resistance band around your feet and hold one end in each hand. Starting with arms extended in front of you, pull your elbows straight back, squeezing your shoulder blades together. Extend arms slowly to return to the starting position.

Bicep curls: Hold dumbbells at your side with palms facing forward. Pretend your elbows are glued to your midsection and curl the weights toward your shoulders, keeping your upper arms still. Slowly return your weights to the starting position.

Squat with overhead press: Hold the weights at your shoulders, do a squat. As you stand back up, press the weights over your head. Return them to your shoulders as you squat back down.

Pullovers: Lie on a physioball on your back so your head and neck are supported. Holding a weight in both hands, reach the weight over your head toward the wall behind you, keeping your arms slightly bent. Drive the weight back up towards the ceiling. Be sure to keep your hips up and squeeze your glutes the entire time. Repeat.

Chest fly: Lying on your back on a bench, hold a dumbbell in each hand and extend your arms out from your body so you form a T; palms should be facing up toward the ceiling. This is your starting position. Without locking elbows, raise your arms so they meet together in front of you, knuckles touching, squeezing your chest as you do so. Lower and return to the starting position.

Pull-ups: Suspend yourself on the pull-up bar with your hands a little wider than shoulder-width apart. Pull yourself up, keeping your body as straight as possible, until your chest reaches the bar. Slowly return to the starting position and repeat. (If you’re struggling with pull-ups, try these alternatives instead.)

Lunge row: Standing with your left leg forward in a lunge and left forearm on thigh, row a weight with your right arm like you’re starting lawn mower. Switch to opposite side lunge for left arm.


Audrey McKenna Hasse is the owner of A.M.Fit, a personal training and healthy consultation business on the Main Line. You’ll find her workouts every Monday right here on Be Well Philly.

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