Do attempt three to four sets of 20 repetitions of tricep chair dips or weights about 10 minutes before you go out in a strappy dress. A short, intense session of arm exercises will leave your muscles instantly "pumped" and they will retain that firmness for some time. Soon you, too, could have arms like Halle Berry's.
Do take up skipping. It works all the major muscles in your arms and shoulders.Do carry a shopping basket rather than push a trolley at the supermarket.
Do lift your children/cat/dog as much as possible. According to American researchers, this sort of "integrative" exercise contributes to the overall strength and tone of your arms.
Do swim. Breaststroke and front crawl are great arm-toners. And the aerobic effects of swimming help you shed fat.
Do pay attention to your diet. It's a two-way process - you reduce the fat that sits on top of the arm muscles by eating a low-fat diet, and tone the muscles underneath by exercising.
Don't shy away from using weights in the belief they will turn you into the Incredible Hulk. Women have too little testosterone to bulk up easily and weights will tone your arms.
Don't use weights that are too light. If your arms aren't tired after 12-15 repetitions, they are not heavy enough.
Ways to beat bingo wings
OK, so a bit of stretching isn't going to melt your bingo wings away but regular stretching, say five times a day, will make muscles longer and leaner and it's a great way to release stress and stay flexible.
- Clever dressing
If you haven't got time to firm up your arms then cheat! There are lots of tops that can hide the your bingo wings. Puffy sleeves can be deceptive; frills and pin-tucks at the shoulders are also good. If you want a strappy top go for thick straps rather than spaghetti straps because a thin strap will make your shoulders and arms look bigger, whereas thick straps will make your arms look in proportion. The same rule applies for a halter-neck too, as this makes your arms stand out.
- Get some wrist weights
Just wearing light weights on your wrists while doing the housework will help tone up the arms and burn fat. Your muscles will have to work harder because they are carrying extra weight and you'll burn more calories this way too.There are lots of varieties, start with 1lb or 2lb weights.
Using Wrist Weights During Cardio
Wear a light wrist weight on each wrist. Adjust the strap so that the weights are secure but not tight enough to be uncomfortable.
Walk, hike or jog as usual and swing your arms naturally. Take the wrist weights off if your arms become tired, even if you have not finished your cardio session.
Do your dance, martial arts or aerobics session with your wrist weights on to get extra strengthening benefits and to burn more calories as you lift more than your body weight.
Switch to a heavier weight if your arms do not become fatigued during exercise.
Using Wrist Weights for Strength Training
Put on your wrist weights. Start with a low weight. Stand with your feet hip-width apart or sit down on an exercise ball or bench, if standing is difficult for you.
Extend your arms straight in front of your thighs with your palms facing upwards. Bend your elbows and bring your weights toward your shoulders to tone your bicep muscles. Extend your arms straight again to do one repetition. Do as many as you can until your arms are tired.
Bring your hands to your sides with your palms facing down. Straighten your arms. Raise your arms to shoulder height to train your shoulder muscles. Lower your arms to complete one repetition. Do enough reps to tire your shoulders.
Raise your arms over your head and bend your elbows so that your hands are behind your neck. Bring your elbows close together without touching them. Extend your arms toward the ceiling without moving your elbows. Bend your arms so that your hands are behind your head again to complete one rep. Keep going until the backs of your arms, called your tricep muscles, are fatigued.
Rest for 90 seconds and repeat the three exercises.
- Flex and tone
We all love the easy exercises you can do while watching the telly, so try this one:
1. Sit up straight or stand with feet hip-width apart.
2. Hold a small dumbbell, a bottle or water or a can of beans in each hand - anything with a bit of weight.
3. Start with your arms at your sides, flex your arms from the elbows up to the shoulders and down to your sides, repeat 10-15 times.
- Use your own body weight
Press-ups are one of the best exercises to lose the fat on your arms. If you find it difficult to do the traditional version of a press-up, i.e. pushing yourself up from lying on the floor, try standing up press-ups.
1. Lean against a wall, standing at arm's length, legs shoulder-width apart.
2. Push yourself away from the wall using just your arms. Do three lots of 8-10 press-ups.
- Chair dips
1. Sit on the edge of your bed or a sturdy chair, put your hands by your side, with your fingers facing forward and hanging just over the edge.
2. Walk your feet out a little so that your hips and bottom are off the chair.
3. Now use your arms to lower yourself down so that your bottom is just a few inches from the floor.
4. Use your arms to slowly pull yourself up again. Try to keep your back straight and don't tense your shoulders.
This is quite a tough exercise, so don't worry if you can only do five, aim to build up to 10.
- Eat less!
If you want slimmer upper arms you may need to lose weight too. So, although it might sound obvious, you need to take in fewer calories as well as exercising. And drink lots of water, 1-2 lt a day, this will help fill you up, detox and get your digestion and circulation working properly.
- Rowing machine
If you go to the gym or you want to buy a piece of exercise equipment that's great for flabby arms, then get a rowing machine. You don?t have to spend lots of money, prices start at around £45.
- Go walking
Don't think that walking is just good for your legs, if you swing your arms while you walk you'll firm up and burn more calories. But you have to walk briskly and for at least 20 mins to get your heart rate up. After about 20 mins your body starts to burn fat, so try to keep going for another 5 or 10 mins.
- Get exfoliating
Sluggish circulation won't help your bingo wings, so use a body scrub every morning and night. Be vigorous and rub in small circular movements, starting at the wrists and moving up to the shoulders. You'll also get softer skin.
Try these exercises three times a week to reduce underarm flab, doing three sets of 12 to 15 repetitions every other day. You can even do them while you watch TV!
- Stand with your feet hip-width apart, and tighten your abs. Hold a weight (a 500ml bottle of water will do) in your left hand with your elbow close to your temple and pointing elbow to the ceiling. Using a slow, controlled movement, extend your elbow over your head until it’s nearly straight without locking. Don’t arch your back. Repeat, then switch arms.
- Stand with your feet hip-width apart. Holding a weight in your left hand, drop your hand to your side and - keeping your upper arm still, lift your hand and lower arm slowly and determinedly. Repeat, then switch sides.
- Lie on the floor and position yourself on your left side, with your left knee bent and right leg extended. Your left palm should be flat on the ground, but not directly below shoulder. Keeping your hips stacked, extend your right arm above your right shoulder, towards the ceiling. Bend your left elbow slightly, then press back up. Repeat, then switch sides.
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