When creating upper-body workouts, you need to include certain exercises. These work several muscles at once or work the muscles on several planes. These don’t require special equipment, and can be done at home or in the gym. Sometimes, life gets in the way, and no matter how hard you try, you can’t make it to the gym. Sometimes, traveling can keep you from the gym, but that shouldn’t stop you from working out and staying on track.
You’ll build your upper body strength and core strength with planks. It’s a full-body workout. Planks are versatile and can be modified for people of all fitness levels. A tabletop version is easier, and an arm lift plank is more difficult. The key to getting the most benefit from a plank is form. Start face down with forearms and toes on the floor, with elbows under the shoulders. Keep your torso straight, shoulders down, and spine in a neutral position. Hold the position for as long as you can and release. Don’t arch your back, let your hips sag, or tilt your head upward.
Chair dips can be done anywhere, even at work. Just make sure the chair is stable and not on rollers. They work the triceps and can help prevent batwings by toning the back of the upper arms. They also work the pecs, trapezius, and serratus anterior. Sit on a chair, a bench, or a coffee table with feet hip-width apart and flat on the floor. Your hands should be next to your hips with palms down, gripping the edge of the chair. With your knees slightly bent, move your bottom forward and off the edge of the chair. Lower yourself down, making a 90-degree angle at the elbow as you slowly breathe in. Breathe out as you raise yourself back to starting position.
Everyone can do a burpee, even beginners. The difference between beginners and those extremely fit is the number of burpees that can be done. Burpees work the entire body, including the upper body. They work the glutes, quads, core muscles, calves, shoulders, chest, and triceps. They also provide a great cardio workout. Burpees start in squat position with feet shoulder-width. Put your hands down and move to a high plank position. Lower, then raise your body, doing a push-up, jump your feet forward, stand up, then move back to the squat position for the second burpee.
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