Do It Better – Week 3 Day 5

We could call this an “isolation day”. Let´s target your arms, shall we?

Pushdowns

Resistance band pushdowns isolate the triceps, and bands are far better than a cable machine in that regard. The resistance of a band will always increase the more you stretch it, and that’s also the natural strength curve of your muscle, having the most power in the full contraction. With free weights, you often fatigue in the expanded part of your muscle without fully fatiguing the whole muscle. Especially in the starting position, we are weaker than in the finishing position. Bands are perfect since they provide less resistance at the start of the movement and maximize the resistance at the end where we are the strongest. 

Attach the resistance band to a pole or a door, above your head.

  1. Starting position: Grab the resistance band with both hands, palms facing down, just below chest height. Keep your elbows tight into your side.
  2. Exhale and drive your hands down towards your waist, contracting your triceps. You will only move your forearms and hands. The elbows stay in place and don’t move.
  3. Inhale and slowly return to the starting position.

High anchor biceps curl

This variation allows us to isolate the biceps while standing in a comfortable position, and preventing to round our shoulders. It´s really easy to spot if we´re letting the shoulders going forward. 

Attach the resistance band to a pole or a door, a little higher than shoulder height. Face the band and grip the handles with palms facing forward. Take a few steps back until you can comfortably extend your arms, with your feet shoulder-width apart.

  1. Starting position: Raise your arms until your elbows reach shoulder height. Make sure your arms and shoulders are in a straight line and aligned with the handles.
  2. Exhale as you perform a curl, squeezing your biceps.
  3. Inhale and slowly extend your arms back to the starting position. Do not lock out your elbows.

Tips to get the most out of this workout

  1. Read the instructions on how to do the exercises. If you skipped it, scroll up. It´s important to keep the technique in mind to perform the exercises correctly.
  2. Watch the first two sets before you start and visualize yourself performing the exercises.
  3. Grab the equipment you need (mat, resistance bands), put them in position, and keep close your bottle of water.
  4. Mute your phone. Next 10 minutes you´ll be unavailable.
  5. We aim for a total of 10 sets (5 sets each exercise), with no rest in between. However, if you need to rest, press pause and take your time.
  6. Each set is 1 minute long. If it´s too much for you right now, do as many repetitions as possible.

Are you ready? Here we go!

You´re almost there!! Enjoy your weekend.

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Abs

The Rectus Abdominis is the most superficial of the abdominal muscles. It is this muscle which forms the six-pack shape! It is a paired muscle running vertically on each side of the anterior wall of the abdomen. There are two parallel muscles, separated by a midline band of connective tissue called the linea alba.

Latissimus Dorsi

The latissimus dorsi is the larger, flat, dorsolateral muscle on the trunk, posterior to the arm, and partly covered by the trapezius on its median dorsal region.

Deltoids

The Deltoid muscle is the muscle forming the rounded contour of the shoulder. It is divided into three portions, anterior, lateral and posterior, with the fibers having different roles due to their orientation.

Infraspinatus

The Infraspinatus muscle is one of the four rotator cuff muscles crossing the shoulder joint and is commonly injured. It is the main external rotator of the shoulder joint.

Biceps

The Biceps brachii is  actually two separate bundles of muscles (heads). The two heads of the Biceps vary in length and as a result, are called the Short and the Long Biceps heads.

Triceps

The Triceps Brachii muscles  have three muscle heads: Lateral, Medial and Long head. Primarily responsible for the extension of the elbow joint. The lateral head is used for movements requiring occasional high-intensity force, while the medial fascicle enables more precise, low-force movements.

Forearm
(Anterior muscles)

The Pronator teres pronates the forearm, turning the hand posteriorly. If the elbow is flexed to a right angle, then pronator teres will turn the hand so that the palm faces inferiorly. It is assisted in this action by pronator quadratus.

Forearm
(Posterior muscles)

The Extensor Digitorum muscle helps in the movements of the wrists and the elbows. It extends the phalanges, then the wrist, and finally the elbow. It acts principally on the proximal phalanges. It tends to separate the fingers as it extends them.

Pecs

The pectoralis major makes up the bulk of the chest muscles in the male and lies under the breast in the female.

The pectoralis minor is a thin, triangular muscle, situated at the upper part of the chest, beneath the pectoralis major. 

Obliques

The External Oblique is situated on the lateral and anterior parts of the abdomen. It is broad, thin, and irregularly quadrilateral. It is the largest and the most superficial (outermost) of the three flat muscles of the lateral anterior abdomen. 

Lower Back

The Erector Spinae is not just one muscle, but a bundle of muscles and tendons. Paired, they run more or less vertically. It extends throughout the lumbar, thoracic and cervical regions, and lies in the groove to the side of the vertebral column.

Glutes

The gluteal muscles are a group of three muscles which make up the buttocks: the gluteus maximus, gluteus medius and gluteus minimus. The three muscles originate from the ilium and sacrum and insert on the femur. The functions of the muscles include extension, abduction, external rotation, and internal rotation of the hip joint.

Quadriceps

The Quadriceps Femoris is the knee extensor muscle.  As a group, the quadriceps femoris is crucial in walking, running, jumping and squatting. It´s subdivided into four separate “heads”.

Hamstrings

A hamstring is any one of the three posterior thigh muscles in between the hip and the knee (from medial to lateral: semimembranosus, semitendinosus and biceps femoris). The hamstrings are quite susceptible to injury.

Lower Leg

The gastrocnemius and the soleus form what we know as calf. They are involved in activities such as walking, running, jumping… 

Trapezius

The trapezius is a broad, flat and triangular muscle. The muscles on each side form a trapezoid shape. It is the most superficial of all the back muscles.

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