When losing weight, we tend to focus on the stomach, thighs, and butt. These are the common problem areas for women.
It’s okay if those are problem areas for you. There’s nothing wrong with focusing on them, but have you thought about your arms lately? We commonly hear the term “bingo wings” after losing a lot of weight. Our underarms get saggy and weak, because of the excess skin from the fat loss. Our shoulders can look skinny and weak compared to the rest of our bodies.
Now you need to build your arms. It’s time to sculpt and develop the biceps, triceps, and more. That means you need the right types of exercises.
When it comes to the arms, you need to do weight exercises. Here are five weight workout combos that you can follow to strengthen your upper arms today.
Make Sure You Have the Right Dumbbells
While there are some body weight exercises that you can do, the best way to build the arm muscles is through the use of dumbbells. You only need 5-10 lb dumbbells in your home – and there’s no need to go to the gym to get them. As you get used to the weights, you can use heavier dumbbells to boost the muscle strength. There will be lighter dumbbells, but you want to focus on at least 5 lbs to start with to work at your arm muscles.
Don’t start off with dumbbells that are too heavy. You’ll run the risk of pulling muscles and damaging various parts of your arm. Lighter dumbbells and more reps are just as good. You can alternate between weights if you want to work on strength quickly and effectively.
You may also find an exercise mat is good. You can get relatively cheaper foam mats if you prefer them. The mats help to ensure stability during the exercises.
The best thing this about many of the exercises on this list is that they’re easy to do from the comfort of your own home. In fact, some of them can be done at the desk!
Here’s a look at 5 combo arm exercises you need to do.
The Press-Up Plank Press
Start by laying on your front with your arms palms down and by your chest. Sitting them shoulder width apart is normal, but you can push them closer together to work on the biceps more. Getting your arms wider will work on the triceps and shoulders more.
Have light weights close to your hand positions, as you’ll need to grab them while in the plank position.
Push yourself up into the plank position and hold it for a couple of seconds. Grab one of the weights with one hand and lift it to your chest. Put the weight down and repeat on the other side.
Lower yourself into a press-up and push yourself back into the plank. Repeat the exercise five times and take a 30-60 second break. You want to do three repetitions of this.
As you get stronger, you will be able to do more repetitions of the exercise. Build your way to doing 10 exercises within each repetition before moving onto heavier weights. You want to build on the core muscles to avoid wobbling while doing the weight lift in the plank position.
If you still can’t hold a plank position, practice that with press-ups, to begin with. Then move onto just lifting one arm off the floor in the weight lift movement without your weights, so you get used to balancing the plank on the one hand. Once your core muscles are stronger, you will be able to move onto adding the weighted exercises into each repetition.
Monkey Arm Burpees
If you’ve not done either of these exercises before, you will want to practice them separately. Start by mastering them both individually – you will still build your arm muscles at the same time.
One burpee starts by standing up with your feet shoulder width apart. Bend into a squat and then lower completely to the floor, kicking your legs backward into a press-up position. Do one press-up, before jumping back into a squat and then jumping into the air. That is one repetition.
As for the monkey arms, this involves the dumbbells. Hold the dumbbells in both hands and lift your arms up, so the dumbbells sit just under your armpits by your rib cages. You look like a monkey tickling under the armpits. Then lower the weights back down to your sides. This is one repetition.
You mix them together by cutting out the jump in the burpees. Lower yourself into the press-up and jump up into the squat, grabbing the weights from the floor. Stand straight, lifting the weights into the monkey arm position and then lower the weights and lower yourself back into the press-up to start another half burpee.
There’s not as much cardio with this combo, but there is plenty of work on your arms. You’re working the biceps and the triceps at the same time.
Do 5-10 monkey arm burpees and then take a 30-60 second break. Do three repetitions of the exercise to gain the full benefit.
Reverse Curl Crunches
While half of this exercise doesn’t quite work on your arm muscles, it will work on your core to help with another arm exercise. You’ll also work on that problematic stomach area, so it’s really a win-win situation.
Crunches are simple. You want to lay on your back with your knees slightly bent. Lift the upper back off the floor, curing your stomach into crunch it. If you’re doing the crunches on their own, you want to place your arms straight out to your knees and sit to a point where your wrists go over your knees and then lay back down.
The reverse curls will require dumbbells. Keep your arms to the side of your body, while laying on your back with your knees bent for stability. Hold one dumbbell in each hand and then raise them up, keeping the upper parts of your arms on the floor. Lower the dumbbells back down, but don’t let them completely touch the floor. You’ll feel the biceps and chest muscles working.
To combine the exercises, when you pull the weights up into a curl you can do a crunch. Keep your upper arms attached to your sides, so you just curl the weight ups. When you lay back down, you can then lower the weights to the floor, as you would with the normal reverse curl.
Try to keep the elbows off the floor while doing the curls. If you are finding the curling exercise difficult, you can put the elbows down for some extra support. Another option is to reduce the weights.
If you don’t have heavier weights and need to make the exercise harder, do the curls and crunches slower to feel the muscles build really.
Hammer Punch with Knee Raises
Knee raises will work on your leg and core strength, helping to support your body when you do other arm exercises. The hammer punches will help to work on your arm strength. You can start hammer punches without any weights at all, but try to add a little resistance. A 2 lb weight is better than nothing at all.
Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart. Raise your right knee to your chest and touch it with your left elbow. You want to keep the back as straight as possible. Repeat on the other side. This is how simple your knee raises are.
For the hammer punch, stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and keep your shoulders back. Tuck your elbows into your sides and hold your weights up, as if you are ready to box. All you need to do is punch one arm straight out in front of you and then pull it back, punching the other arm out. You can make it harder by doing lots of fast punches at a time.
To combine the two exercises, just add in a knee raise for every punch that you do. When you punch out the right arm and bring it back, raise the left leg, so the knee touches the right elbow. You can then repeat on the other side.
Do 10 of these exercises on both sides with a minute or so rest in between. Do at least three repetitions of the combo exercise.
Dumbbell Bench Press with Core Workout
This is technically a single workout, but you’re working on more than just your arm muscles. It involves a major development of your core muscles, and you may want to strengthen them before you continue with the full dumbbell bench press.
Try doing some leg raises to work on your core muscles for this combo workout.
Once you have that, you can lay on your back on a work bench. Have a dumbbell in each arm, tucked into your chest. Lift your legs up, with the knees bent. The thighs will be at a 90-degree angle to your stomach.
Push your arms above your body, while keeping the legs held in place. Then lower your arms back down. As you build your core muscles, you can stretch your legs out as you push your arms up into the air, bending them back in when you lower your arms.
You may find this exercise is easier on the floor first. The bench press tends to force you to pull the core in to avoid wobbling.
Perform 15 exercises, before taking a 60-second break. Repeat this at least three times, but aim for five repetitions of the full exercise.
Get an All Body Arm Strengthening Workout
When you do the five combos one after the other, you’ll get an all body workout that focuses mostly on your arms. Most of the exercises require core strength so you will want to work on that solely if you currently suffer from very little. Don’t worry! Your core is one of the easiest to work on because there are so many exercises that you can do!
Work on the individual exercises before you do the combos. Master them separately, and you will avoid injuries when you start working on them as a combo. You’ll also find the combos easier to do since you’re not trying to learn every little step of the exercise.
As the exercises get easier, you’ll need to weight add more repetitions or add more weights. Start with the repetitions, but you don’t want to double them in the majority of cases more than. If you need to do more than double the amount of repetitions in an exercise, then you need to invest in some heavier dumbbells.
Now You Can Strengthen Your Arm Muscles
There’s no need to suffer from “bingo wings.” These arm exercises work on different areas, including your biceps, triceps, and shoulders. Focus on each of the exercises and feel the muscles that are being built on each one. The slower you do the exercises, the more the muscles have to work. You’ll find that you keep the posture better, but you also add extra strength. You may find that you can do fewer repetitions when you do them slowly.
Don’t forget to mix up your workouts on a daily basis. Make one day a session for your arms and another day for your legs. And don’t forget to throw in some cardio along the way to give yourself an all-over workout on a weekly basis.
Add in protein to your diet to help with the muscle building. Your muscles will tear while exercising. This is completely normal, and the muscles rebuild stronger than they were. Protein will help with the healing process and protect the connective tissues in your body. You will also find that you have more energy throughout the day, as your building muscles will burn more calories on a daily basis.