Arms and chest workout

Will Torres, 33, owner of WILLSPACE, boutique personal-training studio.

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  • This routine is designed to develop the chest and arm muscles in a balanced, symmetrical way. The workout uses double-move exercises: Performing two moves at once improves coordination and engages the core as muscles work to keep the body aligned. Superset the A and B exercises by performing one after the other, then rest for one minute. If you're just getting started, perform each exercise twice, with 8 to 12 reps each time. If you're jump-starting your current program, do three sets of 8 to 12 reps. Warm up for five to ten minutes on a treadmill or cross-trainer.

  • A. Plank row
    (1) Placing one hand on a flat block and the other on a dumbbell, stabilize in a plank position.
    (2) Bending at the elbow, pull one dumbbell toward your chest. Pause, then lower the dumbbell to the floor.
    Do eight to 12 reps with one arm, then switch and repeat with the other arm.

  • B. Single-arm chest press
    (1) Lying on your back on a flat bench, place one hand on your stomach and hold a dumbbell in the other hand. The arm holding the dumbbell should be held out to the side of your body and bent at the elbow.
    (2) Lift the dumbbell straight up to the ceiling, pause and lower the dumbbell to position (1).
    Do eight to 12 reps with one arm, then switch and repeat with the other arm.

  • A. Pull-down with overhead press
    (1) Sitting at a pull-down machine, hold a weight in one hand at your shoulder, with your elbow pointed straight ahead, and hold the handle of the pull-down machine, set to double the weight you are holding in your other hand.
    (2) While pulling the handle down in one hand, simultaneously raise the arm holding the weight up until your arm is straight and pointing at the ceiling. Return to position (1).
    Do eight to 12 reps with one arm, then switch and repeat with the other arm.

  • B. Single-arm dumbbell fly
    (1) Lying on your back on a flat bench, hold a dumbbell in one hand straight above you, with your arm extended up toward ceiling. Keep your other arm by your side, with your palm resting on the side of your thigh.
    (2) Lower your arm out to your side with your elbow slightly bent and your palm facing inward. Return to position (1).
    Do eight to 12 reps with one arm, then switch and repeat with the other arm

  • A. Incline press with bicep curl
    (1) Lying on your back on a bench set to an incline, hold two dumbbells to your shoulders. One palm should be facing toward you and the other palm should be facing away from you.
    (2) Straighten the arm with the palm facing away from you toward the ceiling (incline press), while simultaneously bending the elbow and lowering the other arm toward the floor (bicep curl), creating a straight vertical line with your arms. Return to position (1).
    Do eight to 12 reps with one arm, then switch and repeat with the other arm. Use half the weight for the bicep curl as you are using for the incline press.

  • B. Pullover
    (1) Lying on your back on a flat bench, hold two dumbbells in each hand with your arms extended straight toward the ceiling.
    (2) Lower your arms, keeping your elbows slighty bent, behind your head until they are approximately parallel with the floor. Return to position (1).
    Do eight to 12 reps with one arm, then switch and repeat with the other arm.

  • Modified burbees
    (1) Standing with your feet shoulder-width apart, squat down and place your palms on the floor.
    (2) Kick your legs back and lower into the push-up position. 
    (3) Bend your elbows and lower your body until it's about one inch off the floor.
    (4) Push back up to high push-up position, jump both of your feet outside of your hands, then stand straight up.
    Repeat 25 times.

This routine is designed to develop the chest and arm muscles in a balanced, symmetrical way. The workout uses double-move exercises: Performing two moves at once improves coordination and engages the core as muscles work to keep the body aligned. Superset the A and B exercises by performing one after the other, then rest for one minute. If you're just getting started, perform each exercise twice, with 8 to 12 reps each time. If you're jump-starting your current program, do three sets of 8 to 12 reps. Warm up for five to ten minutes on a treadmill or cross-trainer.

Download this workout as a PDF

Torres's fitness favorites



"One of my favorite places to run outdoors is the Manhattan Waterfront Greenway, along the West Side Highway. Running by the Hudson River helps to inspire me."

"Two of my favorite pieces of gym equipment are the TRX straps (trxtraining.com) and kettlebells. One of my trainers, Mike Bell, trains me with them. I enjoy all of the body-weight exercises I can do with the TRX straps, and the kettlebells help me develop power."

"The best recovery drink is Amplified Recovery Protein by GNC (gnc.com). I only take it after my strength workouts to help my muscles recover after a session with the weights. The best flavor is vanilla."

"Whenever I want to treat myself, I go to Oasis Day Spa for a facial or massage. It's super relaxing; they're very professional. I normally go for facials and then treat myself to a massage every once in a while." 1 Park Ave between 32nd and 33rd Sts (212-254-7722, oasisdayspanyc.com)

Train with Torres: 254 W 10th St at Hudson St, suite B (212-929-1800, willspace.com). E-mail will@willspace.com to schedule an appointment.

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