The dilemma: You want to get a little strength work in, but also really want to watch Netflix. A solution? This 10-minute arms workout you can do while catching up on your favorite TV show. Ten minutes may seem too brief to get much done, but with the right routine and challenging-enough weights, you can absolutely get in some quality strength work.
With that in mind, certified personal trainer Francine Delgado-Lugo, CPT, movement and strength coach and cofounder of Form Fitness Brooklyn, created the below quick-but-effective arms workout for SELF that you can do either standing up or sitting on a chair or couch in front of your TV. You don’t need to move around much to complete this routine, which makes it ideal for your next at-home movie marathon.
This workout primarily targets your biceps, triceps, and shoulders through moves including the Arnold press, overhead triceps extension, bent-over reverse fly, lateral raise, and cross-body curl. But added bonus: It’s also a “chest and back workout in disguise,” Delgado-Lugo tells SELF. That’s because a lot of the movements require your back and chest muscles to assist in the exercise, either by helping to move the weight directly or by stabilizing your body as other muscles do the work. For example, in the lateral raise, your shoulders are the primary movers, but your back muscles help to control the weight as you lift and lower it. Additionally, in the reverse fly, muscles in your back are lifting the weights, but your chest muscles are assisting in controlling them as you lower them back down, Delgado-Lugo explains. In sum, “there’s a lot going on in the workout,” she says. “It’s truly an upper-body workout.” With a special emphasis on the arms, of course!
When selecting weights for this workout, it’s important to pick ones that feel challenging for you, Delgado-Lugo says. Not only does this make for a more effective workout, but it can also help you stay mindful while performing the exercises—key for maintaining good form. That’s especially important if you’re doing this workout while watching a show or movie, since it’s easy to get distracted and let your form falter. (If you’re not familiar with these moves and feel like your form needs a little extra TLC, it might be helpful to do this routine a few times sans distractions to get it all down. And even if you are familiar with them, if you feel your form starting to falter during your routine, you may want to hit pause until you’re done.)
In terms of frequency, you can do this routine at least twice a week, Delgado-Lugo says. Just make sure, as with any type of strength training workout, that you give your muscles enough time in between sessions to recover. The general rule of thumb is to schedule at least one day in between workouts that target the same muscle groups, which means you likely wouldn’t do this routine more than three times a week.