Published October 27, 2015
With Memorial Day approximately one month away, many are looking for some quick bathing suit fixes. The official start of summertime has some seeking the best exercises to work those problem areas and get beach body- and poolside-ready.
The good news is that there is no need to lift heavy weights. A new study out of Canada’s McMaster University found that lifting lighter weights can get you similar results as lifting heavier weights.
"Rather than grunting and straining to lift heavy weights, you can grab something much lighter but you have to lift it until you can't lift it anymore," Stuart Phillips, who is an associate professor of kinesiology at McMaster University said.
The study was featured on ScienceDaily.com and was published in the Journal of Applied Physiology. The report “challenges the widely accepted dogma that training with heavy weights -- which can be lifted only six to 12 times before fatigue -- is the best avenue to muscle growth.”
Below is a workout targeting different body parts to get you beach-ready for which the above mentioned study can be applied.
You should do two sets of at least 24 reps of each exercise using light weights, such as 3-5 pounds.
Lower body workout
Place one foot in front of the other in a split stance, with back heel lifted. Hold weights in your hands by your sides. Bend front knee, lunging forward and keeping upper body upright.
Keep front knee and toe at a 90 degree angle as you lower down. Push up through front heel, coming back up without locking out the knee.
Repeat on the other side.
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Weighted Ball Squats
Place the ball on a wall directly behind your mid-lower back. Hold weights for added resistance in either hand at sides.
Lean against the ball (slightly) and bend knees, lowering your body until your knees are at a 90-degree angle. Push back to starting position
Upper body workout
Isolated Bicep Curls
Sit on a resistance ball or chair with legs wide and feet turned out. Hold a weight in one hand and lean in, resting elbow against inner thigh, without rounding shoulders.
Slowly lower the weight down, bringing your arm almost straight to prepare for repetition. Curl weight up toward shoulder and slowly lower back down.
Repeat on the other side.
Overhead Tricep Extension
Hold a weight overhead, arm straight up. While keeping your bicep close to your ear, drop your forearm behind your head. Contract the triceps to straighten the arm.
Return to start and repeat on the other side.
Dumbbell Lateral Raise
Sit on the ball with dumbbells at sides. Raise your arms out to the sides to shoulder level, elbows slightly bent and wrists straight. Lower your arms and repeat.
Dumbbell Overhead Press
Sit on the ball with arms bent at a 90-degree angle holding dumbbells. Hands should be in an overhand grip, with palms forward. Slowly raise arms up and in, using a pressing motion. Lower back down to 90 degrees.