Gorgeous arms

Long, lean sculpted arms . . . .or maybe you want guns like Madonna. Either way it takes persistence and repetitions.

I have one word: Pushups. Wide, narrow, in between. The best way to change your arms. But the form is a bitch.

Pushups 101

You don’t need to be on your toes to do effective pushups. As a matter of fact, for most women it can be a bit of a neck builder if you do them on your toes. So lets, assume you are doing them girl style or modified.

Begin by lying on your stomach, with your palms flat & parallel to your breasts. Your elbows need to be stacked right over your wrists. Keep your shoulder blades down away from your ears and pulled back toward your spine, keep your neck long, ribs and belly pulled in toward your spine and hips scooped to neutral.

On an exhale, push yourself straight up from the floor  — when your arms are fully extended, your body should be in a straight line from your head to your knees (we’re doing these modified, remember). Once at the top, slowly lower yourself back down toward the floor. You should at least be going down until your arms are bent at a 90 degree angle at the elbow. Make sure you maintain a flat back at all times and keep your shoulders from shrugging. Try starting with 3 sets of 10.

If starting flat on the floor is too hard for you, start on a higher surface like a bench, ledge, or counter top.

Another way to learn pushups is to do “float down pushups”. You begin these by starting in a plank position (either on the knees or toes). Make sure your chest is directly over the space between your hands. Slowly lower yourself to the floor — making sure your chest, stomach and thighs land simultaneously. Once you land, then you push yourself back up from your knees. Lift the knees up and float down again. Try starting these with 3 sets of 10.

Hand width is important. Wide will emphasize the fronts of your shoulders, your chest and upper back. Narrow will hit the triceps more. Try varying your hand distance with each set.

Try doing your pushups and alternate with jumping rope to really make those shoulders cut!

More arm exercises tomorrow . . .