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It feels so good to have that burn back in the arms and legs. It’s been a while since I’ve felt that! I keep forgetting that I don’t have boot camp or someone else to whip me into shape. It’s important to take responsibility into our own hands and undertake these kinds of challenges to hold ourselves accountable.
With today’s challenge, we are spicing things up a little by doing a variety of bicep/hammer curls. I’ve offered four variations, so ideally, simply do 50 reps of each of the four variations. You may also choose to do 200 of one variation, but if you try all of the variations, you’ll be working a variety of different muscles, and that’s always a good thing when we’re looking to increase strength.
20 Supermans (targets lower back, glutes, and hamstrings)
20 Arm Curls (targets upper arms, biceps, brachialis, and both short and long head of the muscle)
Repeat this set ten times for a total of 200 Supermans and 200 Arm Curls (50 for each Arm Curl variation)!
For the Supermans:
1. Lie on your front on a yoga mat (or rug). Extend your arms out in front of you and your legs out behind you as though you’re flying, Superman-style. Keep your legs together and you arms together as well.
2. With a stable core, lift your arms and your legs a few inches off the floor at the same time. Your midsection should still be on the floor, with your chest just barely touching the ground and your thighs lifted off the ground as well. Slowly return to the starting position so that your entire body is touching (or barely touching) the ground. This is one rep.
TIP: Move your head along with your arms so that your body is in one fluid motion. This takes strain off of your neck. Focus on a tight body all the way through; don’t let yourself twist or lean to one side. You want to maintain good balance here!
For the Arm Curls (Four Variations):
1. Stand with your feet planted firmly on the floor, hip width apart, a dumbbell in each hand (I use 10 lbs, 8 lbs, or 3 lbs). Start with your arms in relaxed position on either side of your body, palms facing away from your body.
2. Slowly raise the weights up, keeping your back and upper arms straight, until the weights are at the same height as your shoulders. Lower. This is one rep.
Variation B: Using a stability ball, sit with your upper back against the stability ball. Your body should be at a 40 or 45 degree angle. Perform the same move as above.
Variation C. Sit on a bench (or upright on a stability ball) with a dumbbell in your right hand. Touch your right elbow to the inside of your right knee; keep it at this position throughout the movement. Perform the curl as described above (and do the same move for the left arm when you have finished your prescribed number of reps).
Variation D. Stand as you would normally, but instead of facing your palms away from the body, face them towards each other. Bring up the weight to shoulder height with your palms facing each other. You can also try this hammer curl on the stability ball or on a bench as with Variations B and C.
TIP: If you try all of these variations, you will target various parts of the arm muscles. If you incorporate the stability ball, this too will add to targeting your core at the same time. For those of you without access to a stability ball, simply stand on one leg to engage your core a little bit more and to focus on balance.