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Workout 101: Three Simple Exercises for Killer Arms

Blake Harrison is back with more fitness tips. This week: upper body. Photos: <a href="http://www.kimlucian.com">Kim Lucian</a> for Racked
Blake Harrison is back with more fitness tips. This week: upper body. Photos: Kim Lucian for Racked

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Some days you don't have time to hit the gym, but that doesn't mean that you can't do strength work on your own. Top San Francisco trainer Blake Harrison has an entire arsenal of exercises that you can do at home with little or no extra equipment. Last week, Blake walked us through four exercises to build rock-hard abs. This week, we turn our attention to the upper body. Want defined triceps and shoulders for your summer vacay? Here are three simple moves to get started.

Tricep dip:Triceps are the Instagram muscles. You can flex them without looking like a jerk, so you’ll always look ripped in party photos. (Assuming that you’re not wearing sleeves.) Tricep dips are a move you can do practically anywhere, and they’re incredibly effective.

Step 1: Start sitting on the edge of a chair, bench, or step, with your palms resting on the edge of the seat.

Step 2: Move your hips 2-3 inches away from the edge of the seat, pressing your palms onto the seat to keep your butt lifted. Your knees should be bent, the core should be engaged, and your shoulders should be pulled back.

Step 3: Bending your elbows, dip your butt toward the floor. Your elbows should be pointed directly behind you as your lower yourself. To return to the starting position, press down on the seat through your palms. For an added challenge, walk your feet out so your legs are straight.


Upright row: This move will work your back and biceps at the same time.

Step 1: Start standing with your feet hip-distance apart. With palms facing your body, hold two dumbells (8 pounds for women, 15 pounds for men) at hip level. Keep a slight bend in your elbows.


Step 2: With the dumbells close to your body, raise the weights up toward your shoulders, drawing your elbows wide and to the sides. Your core should remain engaged. For an added shoulder challenge, keep the center ends of the dumbbells pressed against one another.


Here's the same exercise, viewed from the back.


Notice that you should be lifting your arms high enough to form a mini-V.


Shoulder Fly: This is a great move to work away any pesky bulges around your back.

Step 1: Grip the dumbbells so that your palms are facing your body. Hinge at the hips while holding your dumbbells.


Step 2: Draw your weights up and out to a 45 degree angle with your body. Avoid rounding the back. Women should repeat this move for 18-22 reps; men for 12-15 reps. To repeat, bring the weights back down to your starting point in a slow and controlled motion.

Next week, we'll finish out the series with Blake's booty tips. For more upper body tips tutorials, check out Blake's online video series on biceps and back and triceps and chest.

· Blake Fit [Official Site]
· Workout 101: Sculpt Your Abs with Blake Harrison [Racked]