Effective Arm Workout & Cardio vs. Weight Lifting
I get a ton of questions about my workouts. Once again, there is no magic bullet. Work on habits, consistency and small changes to move you in the right direction. The first thing I recommend to do is start. Start going to the gym. Or not, start going outside, in your basement, wherever! You don’t’ have to have a gym setting to get a workout in. Just begin. Start planning in your workouts where you do them 3-4 times / week and build in a healthy routine. I’ve done it consistently and for so long I don’t think anything of it! Then in turn, I can’t even imagine missing my early morning workouts because it’s a part of my day and it makes me feel so good. Being a creature of habit isn’t a bad thing.
I suggest doing something you enjoy – yes – there is room for doing the things that suck that make us strong but when it comes to your health, it’s important to implement a ‘feel good’ exercise of something you love to do. Why? Then you are more likely to stick with it! I LOVE lifting weights. I like the results. I like the way it makes me feel and as you see progress, it becomes addicting! There is nothing wrong with WANTING to feel good.
The purpose of this blog post is to talk about 1. How I organize my workouts and the why behind them and 2. A full arm workouts (I mean men, women, older, younger – who doesn’t want toned arms!? PSA If you don’t, that’s okay too, hopefully you still learn something from this post! Let’s start by busting a few myths. You do not have to lift super heavy to build muscle. You do not have to work out for hours to achieve exceptional results. And lastly, you do not need to do cardio if you want to lean up and lose weight. These are all FACTS! Let me explain how.
Lifting super heavy, brah?
The answer is nah brah! I hardly ever lift extra heavy. I found the best results are to go for the burn and that pump. I prefer to keep my weight in the range of where I do 8-15 reps. The key is going to fatigue. When I lift heavy, I found that I cannot do enough to really feel the pump and my form always tends to suffer. I prefer grabbing a moderate weight, pumping out 10 reps where it burns BADLY (oooh baby make it HURTS so good!) on the 9th and 10th and then having a little rest and doing it all over again. This can not only give you the results you want but can also help you be more effective with your time in the gym. It will help with toning your muscles and it will help you burn more calories and increase the metabolism. It’s a win win! To be clear, this is the method I do in all my workouts 95% of the time and that is partly how I achieved the results I have. The rest of the results comes with nutrition, self-care, bouts of fasting etc. See this great article I wrote on intermittent fasting! It’s not for everyone but produces exceptional results: https://www.addictionofchoice.com/post/gain-muscle-lose-fat-have-balance-one-trick-pony
One other tip I like to do is formulate my workouts into supersets – I am ALL ABOUT being effective with my time. What supersets are is doing one exercise then hoping over and doing another pretty much immediately (this will be detailed more in the workout below).
Effective time in the gym >>> Time in the gym
Do not get it twisted! I don’t go to the gym for hours a day! I like to be effective and my time is very valuable. I have a full-time job, a full-time blog and every minute of my day counts! That’s another reason I like to do supersets. I can get more done in less amount of time. Going to the gym and being highly effective for a 30-minute workout is much better than going to the gym for 2 hours and standing around chatting or doing nothing for most of the time. Perspective for you! If you see someone in great shape and a great physique, yes they workout but there are so many other factors than gym time such as diet, recovery, sleep, hydration, and so much more. Stay tuned as I will continually talk about all of these types of wellness tools and hacks so make sure to subscribe your email to my main page!
Cardio vs. Weight lifting
Above I mentioned you don’t need cardio to lean up and lose weight. This is true! Doesn’t mean it won’t help you but it’s not the only option. Lifting weights burns calories too! And also, when you lift weights and add muscle, you increase your metabolic rate and lean mass that helps you burn more calories. You can actually burn more calories. So, the synapsis of this is cardio will help you lose weight and so will weight lifting so do what you enjoy. Ultimately weight loss is an equation and that is you have to burn more calories than you consume – calories in vs. calories out.
Cardio on the other hand, is great for the heart, great to get the 'feel good' endorphins, and great to burn calories! I am not saying don't do it but it is also not the end all be all. Variety is always an option and as we discussed before, do something you enjoy! I always line up my workouts with my goals because that makes the most sense. If I am trying to bulk I will do zero cardio and only lift weights while eating more calories and if I want to cut, I will start doing more cardio and eat a little leaner - pretty easy equation right!?
The Arm WERK Out!
Keep in mind I am going to do this just as I described above. Simple is key. Try for 2-3 times / week with at least 1 rest day in between. We are going to do supersets and keep the reps in the 8-15 range.
Warm Up: Walk on the treadmill for 10 minutes, Elliptical or something to get the heart rate up. When you are done, grab a pair of 5-10 lbs dumbbells and do a few sets of bicep curls to warm up the arms and get the blood flow going before we begin.
Superset 1 (Superset means alternate between the 2 exercises. When all 3 sets are complete, you’re done. 1 set of hammer curls, 1 set of tricep rope pushdowns. Repeat). If you are unfamiliar with an exercise, make google your best friend. Once you practice the exercise and habit, you'll understand it :)
3 sets of 12 Hammer curls
3 sets of 12 Tricep rope pushdowns
Rest 1 minute and repeat for 3 total times
4 sets of 10 barbell bicep curl
4 sets of 10 tricep pushups (start from knees if you have to, make a triangle with your hands on the ground)
Rest 1 minute and repeat for 4 total times
3 sets of 15 cable rope bicep curls (pause for 1 second in the flexed position)
3 sets of 15 bent over tricep kickbacks
Rest 1 minute and repeat for 3 total times
Set 4 Burn Outs!
Sit down at the bicep preacher curl machine and put the weight on low. Bust out as many as you can and keep it slow and in control. Squeeze the biceps at the top of the flexed position. Go until you cannot lift anymore! Rest for a couple minutes and then do 2 more times for a total of 3 sets. **Insert strong arm emoji**
You can honestly translate this type of workout into any muscle group! Legs, chest, back etc. Go to the gym, use proper form, pick up something heavy and go until it BURNS!
Don’t overthink your workouts. Go to the gym, lift properly using correct form and be consistent. The biggest thing to do is to just go. And consistency. Use the motto below:
Wake up. Go. Do it. Improve with time.
It gets better. It gets easier. It then becomes part of your lifestyle. <3
What are your thoughts on this article? What else would you like to see on this blog?
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