Training

Improve Upper-Body Strength With This Easy Push-Pull Method

By November 22, 2019 No Comments

Even runners need to work on upper body strength, and hitting the gym twice a week is the best way to do so. It is also something most coaches from around the world recommend. In this article, we show you how to maximize your gym routine to gain strength in your upper body.

A healthy upper body helps you run faster and improves your posture and running form. It also helps improve bone density and prevents injuries. Stronger arms help you stride better, and promote the overall mechanics involved in a run.

So how do you plan your upper body routine?

With so many types of machines and forms of exercises available, we understand that it can be overwhelming to choose one. But that’s what we are here for!
Divide your workouts in a push-pull format. A push-pull routine trains your body functionally and ensures all muscles are engaged while training. It improves your entire muscle strength and not just a particular one. The method is less time consuming than a traditional gym workout, which means that it is easy to fit in your schedule and is also less time consuming than a regular gym workout. Just doing a push-pull routine for 4-6 weeks can show drastic changes.

Why Push-Pull

This method is comparatively easy to learn and less time consuming making it easier to include in your schedule.
It also simplifies training. Following a push-pull routine can prove more efficient as your muscles won’t tire out too quickly.

On days you focus on the push, your pull muscles are resting, and it works the other way around. Following a push-pull workout plan is especially beneficial for beginners. If you’re ever confused about what exercises to do on a particular day, alternate the routine, or pick one that suits you best.

Here are some workouts to help your push-pull routine:

Push workouts

1.Chest Press
●Lie down on a bench or the floor, with dumbbells in each hand
Arch your back and open your chest and shoulder blades
●Grab the dumbbells with your upper arms and raise it at a 45 degree angle.
●Set your feet flat on the floor
●Lift the weight and bring it down to your chest, and now push it back up.
●Repeat

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2.Overhead Shoulder Press
●Sit or stand with your back straight.
●Hold the dumbbells in each hand, and bring them up to your ears on each side. Maintain a wide stance.
●Raise your hands towards the roof, and bring them back down. Make sure your back stays straight.
●Keep this movement vertical and push the dumbbells back up when they’re near your ears.

3.Dumbbell Front Raise
●Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart.
●Hold a dumbbell in each hand
●Hold out one dumbbell in front of you without bending your arms, and bring it back down once you have brought it to chin level. Now do the same with the other hand
●Make sure your back stays straight. If you feel it’s moving every time you bring the dumbbell up, reduce the weight.

4.Tricep Rope Pressdown
●Stand upright with a straight torso in front of the pulley machine and slightly incline forward.
●Bring the upper arms close to your body, perpendicular to the floor
●Pull the cables with both hands towards your thighs, then take it back only till where you can keep your elbows locked
●Pull the cables again to repeat.

5.Push-ups
●Lie down prone on a yoga mat. Place your hands right below your shoulder blades.
●Push back your shoulders, and lower yourself
●Think of yourself as a straight line. This way you will make sure your chest and stomach go down together
●Look up slightly, don’t keep your neck bent.

Pull workouts

1. Pull-ups
●Grab the bar about shoulder-width apart
●Raise your feet up by bending your knees
●Pull yourself up

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2.Bent over rows
●Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart.
●Hold a bar a little more than shoulder-width.
●Bend down while keeping your feet rooted to the ground.
●Make sure your back is straight and not arched.
●Pull the bar towards your belly button, and drop it back towards the knees.
●Make sure your back doesn’t move with this movement.

3. Lat pull-down
●Sit down straight in front of a cable pull-down machine. Hold the bar of the machine shoulder-width apart.
●Pull it towards your upper chest, while maintaining a straight back.
●Make sure your lat muscles are pulled back, and your back isn’t curved when you’re picking the weight down.
●Take the bar back up over your head, till the lat muscles are extended. Now bring the bar towards your upper chest once again.

4.Dumbbell curl
●Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart.
●Grip the dumbbell and lock your elbows next to your body.
●Bring the dumbbells up, and make sure your elbows don’t move out of their locked position.
●Lower the dumbbells again, and make sure your elbows stay in place.

5.Shrugs
●Stand erect with a dumbbell in each hand
●Lift the dumbbells by elevating the shoulders as high as possible
●Lower the dumbbells back to the original position
●Repeat

Alternatives for push-pull days
If you have time on your hands, then go ahead and hit the gym four times a week to train each method twice a week. But if you’re only planning on working out once a week, don’t fret, you still have a lot that you can do. The easiest way to get in an efficient workout that combines everything is to follow the Big 5- the 5 exercises that combine push and pull routines that are ideal for a full-body workout. You can do this once or twice a week.

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