Have you ever dreamed of having amazingly toned Michelle Obama arms? Us too!
While we might not be able to afford the fabulous sleeveless dresses she often wears to show off her muscular biceps, we can certainly follow a simple workout and diet plan to get the best, toned arms. Watch out Michelle! We’ll challenge you to a push-up contest soon enough!
Best Workouts for Women: Good Routines, Great Results
With some small changes to your diet and adding arm exercises for women to your fitness program, you’ll have killer arms in no time. It’s time to finally get rid of the “batwings” and tone those arm muscles into the ideal, muscular arms that any woman and man will be envious of!
How to Lose Arm Fat Fast
The best way to get toned arms is through a two-prong approach: diet and exercise. In order to see your newly, beautifully toned arms, you’ll need to get rid of that flab under your triceps. Unfortunately, targeted weight loss is impossible, but if you reduce your overall body fat percentage, those batwings will shrink.
To reduce your body fat percentage, you’ll need to tweak your diet. Most women will start to see muscle definition around 16-20% body fat. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends aiming to lose between one and two pounds per week for healthy weight loss. This means watching what you eat.
One pound of body weight is equivalent to 3,500 calories. If you eat an average of 2,000 calories per day, you need to reduce your caloric intake by 500-1,000 calories per day in order to lose 1-2 pounds per week.
Start by cutting out excess sugars and carbohydrates. Focus on eating lean proteins, fresh fruits and vegetables, and complex carbs. Since you’ll be lifting more weight frequently, you’ll also want to eat more protein. You should aim to eat about one gram of protein per body weight, so if you weigh 120 lbs. you should eat 120 grams of protein per day. And don’t forget to drink lots of water!
Exercises to Get Beautiful, Toned Shoulders, Biceps, Triceps, and Forearms
Now that you have your diet dialed in, it’s time for the arm toning workouts. Cardio is still an important part of your workout program. Don’t skip it as it’s a great way to blast the fat away. You should aim to do at least 30 minutes of moderate cardio exercise a day. This could be anything from running to cycling to hiking. Find something that you love that makes you sweat and gets the heart rate up.
Even though your focus is on building beautifully toned biceps and arms, you still need to strength train your entire body 2-3 times a week. No one wants to look like Popeye! Focus on full body compound movements like, squats, deadlifts, and push-ups.
After you complete your full-body or, at minimum, lower body workout, it’s time to turn those arms into machines with the best arm exercises for women. Add these arm-focused exercises to build the best muscular and toned arms:
Front Arm Raises
Lateral Arm Raises
Push-Ups and/or Triceps Push-Ups
The kickback is one of the best tricep workouts for women. To get the most out of our arm toning workouts, start by doing each exercise for 3 sets of 12 reps with a weight that is light enough that you can complete all 12 reps without fail. After a few weeks you should be able to increase your reps to 4-6 sets of 12 reps. As your strength increases, you should also increase your dumbbell weight.
For the bodyweight exercises, it is perfectly acceptable to do your push-ups on your knees until you can build strength to move up to your toes. Don’t attempt the triceps push-ups until you have mastered the regular push-up. Triceps dips can be done with legs bent in a 90-degree angle (easiest) or with legs out straight (hardest).
Expert Tip: When doing push-ups keep your elbows in close to your body to really work your triceps.
We’re often asked how to get perfectly sculpted arms and now you have a list of the best arm exercises for women to give you those fabulous Michelle Obama arms quickly! By eating a healthy well-rounded diet, losing body fat, and toning your arms with arm-focused exercises, you’ll have beautifully toned arms that are just begging to be shown off in your best sleeveless dress!
Need some inspiration? Check out these perfectly sculpted arms brought to you by women’s arm exercises!
(Slideshow by: Alexa Erickson)
1. Jessica Biel
Strong not skinny is the name of the fitness game in Hollywood these days, but Biel was a believer of this motto way back when the skeletal trend was in. Her arms are particularly impressive and exemplify how women can have a toned and shapely set without looking bulky.
2. Kate Beckinsale
This British babe is a timeless beauty who proves feminine and strong can certainly go hand-in-hand.
3. Jada Pinkett Smith
“PUSH-UPs are my favorite exercise for my arms,” explains Pinkett Smith. “You may need to start on your knees in three sets of 10. Try to work to getting off your knees and doing as many push-ups as possible a day until your arms look the way YOU want.
4. Michelle Obama
The First Lady the queen of the best arm exercises for women who seems entirely proud of her hard-earned muscular arms, showcasing them in gorgeous sleeveless dresses at Congress and White House functions as well as on the covers of magazines.
“We focus on body weight training,” explains Madonna’s personal trainer Craig Smith. The timeless diva also “utilizes dance to tone the entire body, plus a mix of asana yoga, Bar Method and a lot of hybrid Pilates programs to give that nice, sleek look to her arms.
6. Cameron Diaz
This blonde bombshell is a true fitness fanatic who doesn’t worry about looking too masculine, so long as she feels healthy and fit. She’s a fan of strength training with a mixture of plyometrics for a cardio burst, including heart-pounding moves like plank pushups, and women’s arm exercises like triceps dips and bicep curls
7. Viola Davis
The star of How to Get Away with Murder is often seen showing off her arms on set, wearing lots of sleeveless dresses while playing Annalise Keating. Davis thinks her alter-ego would want to show off her muscular arms “to be a little physically intimidating in the courtroom.”
8. Sarah Jessica Parker
This talented actress owes her super-sculpted upper-body to daily personal training sessions and yoga classes.
9. Kelly Ripa
This pint-sized celebrity loves to workout, and her toned physique from head-to-toe, including some seriously buff arms, proves it.
10. Jennifer Aniston
Aniston attributes her fit physique and beautifully toned arms to weight training.
“When I’m at the gym, there are the ropes. Grab little 5-lb. weights if you have nothing else and just move them around.”
11. Eva Longoria
“My bachelor’s degree is in kinesiology, so it’s ingrained in me to work out,” Longoria notes of her great body. For how to get arms like this Latin lady, try alternating bicep curls. They strengthen and tone upper arms.
12. Kate Hudson
This bubbly beauty swims regularly to keep her arms in shape.
13. Hilary Swank
What arm exercise for women to Hilary do? All them including the 30 day arm challenge! Chest flies, tricep extensions and bicep curls got this actress her buff arms. She regularly posts videos of her workouts on her Instagram-check them out!
14. Jillian Michaels
This celebrity fitness trainer knows a thing or two about how to quickly shape up and slim down fast. “Your upper arms are one of the first areas to reveal aging, weight gain and weight loss,” an article on her website explains. “You can perform many exercises to firm your upper arms and make them attractive.” Her go-to women’s arm exercises? Push-ups and bench dips.
15. Jen Sinkler
Retired USA Rugby player and now well-known fitness writer and personal trainer has no fear of showing off her buff arms, and is a big fan of the dumbbells for shredding arm fat in record time. Check out one of her go-to programs here.
16. Chelsey Korus
A notable yoga instructor based in Los Angeles, Korus proves toned arms can be achieved by body weight alone. To shred fat fast, we suggest getting down in Dolphin Pose.
17. Jessi Kneeland
This beautiful personal trainer believes shredding arm fat fast is all about taking on “a bulking program.”
18. Natalie Jill
There are a lot of programs out there for toning up while slimming down, and health and fitness influencer Natalie Jill is a believer in tricep dips, kickbacks and sit throughs for her arm toning workouts.
19. Serena Williams
Serena Williams is notorious for her upper-body strength. Nike master trainer Marie Purvis, who helped Williams develop a workout in the Nike+ Training Club app, suggest trying plank rows to sculpt your arms quickly. For sexier guns in just one month, do it three times a week.
20. Idalis Velazquez
This beautiful fitness professional is all about incorporating the kettlebell in arm exercises for women for toning shoulders, triceps, biceps and forearms.
21. Sofia Vergara
The stunning actress is fiercely fit, and owes her toned arms to trainer-to-the-stars Anna Kaiser. Check out the trainer’s top tips for strong arms here.
22. Evangeline Lilly
It was hard not to admire the star of the epic show Lost‘s gorgeously strong arms and fiercely bold shoulders on such a petite frame. Want a sexy set like this babe’s? Try these three moves.
23. Jennifer Garner
Check out this easy-to-follow workout to get arms like the gorgeous Garner’s.
24. Sofia Boutella
Boutella has one powerful, badass presence and her toned set of arms sure show off her necessity for getting a good sweat on. Kill two birds with one stone by incorporating jump roping, which will undoubtedly tone up your arms while giving you a good burst of cardio.
25. Massy Arias
This exuberant Certified Personal Trainer has plenty of exercises to keep her arms looking badass. Here’s a glimpse at her arm toning workouts.
26. Tanya Poppett
The Sydney-based trainer is known for her abs and perfect legs, but just check out those guns. Into ropes? Try out CrossFit for an intense workout that will tone your shoulders, triceps, biceps and more! You should also incorporate a military diet like her to get maximal results.
The Bajan beauty’s body is stunning to say the least, and her strong arms just add to the sass and sensuality that is part of her brand.
28. Hayden Panettiere
The petite 24-year-old is a big fan of Pilates for keeping herself in tip-top shape. Not only does it give her a flat tummy, which she says “is is good for the core. My favorite abs move is the bicycle crunch,” but Pilates gives you lean and sexy arms as well.
29. Vanessa Hudgens
With an enviably flat midsection, it’s hard to remove your stare from this beauty’s belly, but her arms are just as shapely. The best way to get naturally toned arms in Hudgens’ opinion is keeping it real with a healthy diet and hiking. Pack on some extra weight while you climb to really give your shoulders a run for their money.
30. Carrie Underwood
Chin-ups are among the exercises in this country star’s plans for a perfect upper bod. Check out this chin-up challenge to get on her level.