Exercise Your Way To Michelle Obama ArmsKacy Duke shares a series of simple, yet effective arm exercises using three-, five- and eight-pound dumbbells.
Push, Pull, Kickback
1. Assume a squat position with your legs bent about 45 degrees. Hold a light dumbbell in each hand, arms bent so the weights are positioned just in front of your chest, palms facing each other
2. Extend your arms straight out in front of you, pushing the weights forward.
3. Then bend your elbows, squeeze your shoulder blades together, and pull the weights back to either side of your chest.
4. Finally straighten your arms out behind you. Do three sets of 8-12 reps.
You'll Feel It: In your chest, back, shoulders and triceps. You'll also get a bonus burn in your thighs and booty from performing this exercise in squat position.
The Body-Love Benefit: As you develop and harness the raw power in your chest and back, you won't need help hauling home your latest flea market finds, and you'll carry yourself with more confidence.
Kacy's Coaching Tips: It's a good idea to try this one without any weights to start. Engage your chest, back and triceps the full range of motion. That way when you do add weight, you'll be sure to engage all the right muscles to do the work.
Open With Strength
1. Stand in the power position, arms by your sides feet close together, knees slightly bent. Holding dumbbells, lift your arms straight out to the sides so your body forms a T, palms facing down.
2. Keeping your arms extended, rotate your palms front, so the ends of the weights are towards the floor. Squeeze both arms together until their straight out in front of you.
3. Return to the starting position, and immediately repeat the move. Do three sets of 8-12 reps.
You'll Feel It: In your shoulders and chest.
The Body-Love Benefit: This move builds your upper body, giving you a sexy, formidable presence no one will be able to ignore.
Kacy's Coaching Tips: Light weights are the way to go here. Even 8-pound dumbbells can feel like 30 pounds when you hold them out to your sides for more than a few seconds. You want to strengthen, not strain, your shoulders.
Double Bicep Curls
1. Stand in the power position with your feet close together, knees soft. Hold a dumbbell in each hand, palms facing out.
2. Keeping your elbows close to your sides, bend your arms so your forearms are extended straight out in front of your body at waist height, palms facing up.
3. Squeeze your biceps and lift the weights up to your shoulders.
4. Lower back to the starting position and immediately rotate your arms out to your sides; curl the weights back up to the outsides of your shoulders.
5. Continue alternating a for a full set. Do three sets of 8-12 reps.
You'll Feel It: Through your entire biceps and into your shoulders.
The Body-Love Benefit: This move etches a pretty line between your biceps and your shoulders. But more important, it builds endurance in your arms so you can cradle small children and hold on tight to the ones you love.
Kacy's Coaching Tips: Pretend your elbows are krazy-glued to your side so you completely isolate your biceps. Don't "assist" with the move by hoisting your torso backward as you lift. Keep the rest of your body still as a statue but completely relaxed.