Workout 31: Chest & Abs


Chest Exercises

1. Floor Press

  1. Lie down on the floor (or flat bench) with a dumbbell in each hand resting perpendicular, on top of your thighs, palms facing one another.
  2. Then, using your thighs to help raise the dumbbells up, lift the dumbbells one at a time so that you can hold them in front of you at shoulder-width.
  3. Once at shoulder width, rotate your wrists forward so that the palms of your hands are facing away from you. The dumbbells should be just to the sides of your chest, with your upper arm and forearm creating a 90 degree angle. 
  4. Use your chest to push the dumbbells up. Lock your arms at the top of the lift and squeeze your chest, hold for a second and then begin coming down slowly.

2. Push Up

  1. Lie on the ground face down and place your hands shoulder width apart. Push your body off the ground through your hands while keeping your back as straight as possible. 
  2. Lower yourself back down until your chest nearly touches the ground as you inhale. 
  3. Exhale and press your upper body back up to the starting position while squeezing your chest, arms, and abdominal muscles.

3. Incline Dumbbell Press

  1. Position yourself on an exercise ball so that your mid-back is supported by the ball and your legs and thighs make a 90 degree angle to the floor. Hold a dumbbell in each hand and place it atop your thighs. The palms of your hands will be facing each other.
  2. Then, using your thighs to help push the dumbbells up, lift the dumbbells one at a time so that you can hold them at shoulder-width.
  3. Once you have the dumbbells raised to shoulder-width, rotate your wrists forward so that the palms of your hands are facing away from you. This will be your starting position.
  4. Be sure to keep full control of the dumbbells at all times. Then, breathe out and push the dumbbells up with your chest.
  5. Lock your arms at the top, hold for a second, and then start slowly lowering the weight. Note: Ideally, lowering the weights should take about twice as long as raising them.
  6. Repeat the movement for the prescribed number of repetitions.
  7. When you are done, place the dumbbells back on your thighs and then on the floor. This is the safest manner to release the dumbbells.

4. Dumbbell Fly

  1. Before laying down, lift the dumbbells in front of you at shoulder width keeping your palms facing each other. To get into position, sit on the ball and roll your back along the ball until your mid-and-upper back are supported and your thighs and legs form a 90-degree angle to the floor, and keep the dumbbells close to your chest. 
  2. When you’re ready, press the dumbbells out and above you so that your arms are fully extended.
  3. Slightly retract your shoulder blades, unlock your elbows, and slowly lower the dumbbells laterally to create a wide arc while maintaining the angle at your elbow. You should feel stretch in your chest.
  4. Once the dumbbells reach your chest level, reverse the movement while trying not to let the dumbbells touch.
    *This can also be performed on the floor, a sturdy ottoman or coffee table, or bench.

5. In and Out Push Up
  1. Place your hands slightly wider than shoulder-width apart and place your toes on the floor while face down.
  2. Keep your body in a straight line from your shoulders to your feet and keep your abs and butt engaged.
  3. Lower yourself by bending your elbows until your chest almost touches the floor.
  4. Forcefully drive through the palms of your hands to push yourself back up off the ground landing in the starting position with your hands wider than shoulder width.
  5. Lower yourself by bending your elbows until your chest almost touches the floor.
  6. Forcefully drive through the palms of your hands to push yourslf back up off the ground landing with your hands in the starting positio.
  7. Repeat steps 3 - 6.

Abs Exercises

1. Leg Lift 

  1. Lie with your back flat on the floor (or on a bench) with your legs extended in front of you.
  2. Place your hands to your sides with your palms facing down. To keep your hands down for support, you can place them under your glutes.
  3. Keep your legs fully extended and as straight as possible (it’s okay if your knees slightly bend). Hold the contraction at the top for a second.
  4. Slowly lower your legs back down to the starting position.

2. Bicycle Crunch

  1. Lie flat with your lower back pressed to the ground. Place your hands behind your head slightly above your neck. Lift your shoulders into a crunch position.
  2. Raise yours legs so that your thighs are perpendicular to the ground and your shins parallel to the ground.
  3. Simultaneously, slowly go through a cycle pedal motion kicking forward with the right leg while pulling in the knee of the left leg. 
  4. Bring your right elbow close to your left knee by crunching to the side. Then crunch to the opposite side as you cycle your legs and bring your left elbow closer to your right knee.
  5. Alternate sides.

 

3. Russian Twist

  1. Lie down on the floor placing your feet either under something that will not move or by having a partner hold them. Your legs should be bent at the knees.
  2. Elevate your upper body so that it creates an imaginary V-shape with your thighs. Your arms should be fully extended in front of you perpendicular to your torso and with the hands clasped. This is the starting position.
  3. Twist your torso to the right side until your arms are parallel with the floor while breathing out.
  4. Hold the contraction for a second and move back to the starting position while breathing out. Now move to the opposite side performing the same techniques you applied to the right side.
  5. Repeat for the recommended amount of repetitions.

4. Plank

  1. Place your forearms on the ground with your elbows aligned beneath your shoulders. Keep your arms parallel to your body at about shoulder-width distance. (You should be in a push up position, only on your forearms rather than your hands).
  2. Ground your toes into the floor and squeeze your glutes to stabilize your body. Be careful to not to lock or hyperextend your knees.
  3. Neutralize your neck and spine by looking at a spot on the floor about a foot in front of your hands. Your head should be in line with your back. Contract your abdominals to keep yourself up and prevent your booty from sticking up.
  4. Keep your back flat and hold the position for as long as possible without compromising form.

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