Make it count: This workout uses high reps, 25 versus the standard 10 to 12, and lighter weights. By the time you reach the 18th or 19th rep, you should feel a burning sensation in your muscles, making it difficult to complete the set. If you can lift past the 25th rep, your dumbbells are too light. Increase by 2 pounds until you find a weight that challenges you to complete all 25 reps.
Move: Stand tall, with feet shoulder-width apart. Hold dumbbells, one in each hand, with elbows bent and close to sides, palms facing in. Pivot on your left foot, and rotate left hip and left shoulder to the right while extending left arm out in a controlled punch across your body. The movement should be smooth and controlled. TIP: Do not swing, throw your arm, or lock your elbow. Pull left arm back to shoulder, while rotating your body back to start position.
Perform the same movement on your right side (rotate body to left and punch across with right arm). This constitutes one rep.
Move: Stand tall with abs contracted, feet together. Hold dumbbells, one in each hand, with arms hanging in front of body, palms facing thighs. Keep hands close to body, and lift dumbbells up to chest level―elbows should be about shoulder height.
Next, extend forearms out to sides until arms are fully lengthened―you’ll form the letter “T” with your body. Return dumbbells to chest, then lower to start position.
Move: Stand tall with abs contracted. Hold dumbbells, one in each hand, arms at sides, palms facing behind you. Keep shoulders down, and press arms behind your back; tighten the back of arms (triceps).
Next, slowly lift elbows to bring dumbbells just above butt level. As you lift, squeeze elbows toward each other (imagine holding a basketball between your arms without letting it fall). Lower arms, and return to start position.
Move: Stand tall with abs contracted, feet shoulder-width apart. Hold dumbbells, one in each hand, with arms lifted out to sides at shoulder level, bent at elbows, palms facing forward. Push dumbbells straight overhead until arms are extended, pause, rotate palms and forearms to face behind you.
Next, lower dumbbells to chin level, elbows close to your body.
Last, push dumbbells back up―arms extended overhead―rotate palms to front, and lower dumbbells to the starting position.