Upper Body Gym Training and Random Stuff

by Marianne  - April 20, 2012

Hi everyone!

After our Killer workout on Tuesday, on Wednesday Nia and I decided to venture to her local gym for some upper body training. Now, I have to admit, I did not feel “in the zone” to do anything miraculous, so I was really just going through the motions and getting a feel for the new environment, and also trying to calculate lbs to kg in my head LOL!!

Nia and I started off with super-setting Bench Presses with Rows (Nia did Single Arm Dumbbell Rows, while I did Seated Cable Rows). We did about 6 sets in total and kept the reps higher. I actually forgot I brought my camera, so I only have footage of the next section.

In the second section of the workout, I did a circuit of Standing Military Press, Pull Ups and Lateral Raises (yes, Lateral Raises). As you know, I have been doing more hypertrophy type training, so Nia and I starting having fun with some isolation exercises too!

At the end of the workout we did drop-sets of Scull-crushers and Bicep Curls. This meant we started wit 42-45lbs on the EZ Bar for the Skull-Crushers and then did as many reps as possible with that weight. Then dropped 10lbs off the bar and repeated until we just had 1 plate each side. With the bicep curls, we started with 25lbs and made our way down to 10lbs. The bicep curls nearly killed me!!! I never train my biceps like this anymore, so I was curling with my whole body and shaking liking a crazy person LOL!

While I did not go heavy with this workout, my arms are in bits today! Hypertrophy training is great fun to throw in from time to time, but I am sure I will go back to my old style soon enough. Here is a quick video. As you can see, it appears that Nia does NOTHING but crazy dancing … but she does actually train!

It was funny, because after this workout, we went to a local Vineyard and tasted every wine they had … haha! Great post-workout nutrition 😛

Here is Nia and I having our morning coffee in a local cafe where we sit on our laptop and reply to our emails etc. Nothing makes me happier than coffee in the morning blogging 🙂

Bloggers happy at their work 🙂

That’s really it for today. We will have more bits of footage and things over the next week too, so stay tuned for that.




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  1. Ahhhhh isolation workouts…how i miss them…lol. I too sometimes grab the ol’ dumbbells and shoot out a set of skulls, kickbacks and curls. Though dont let me catch you doing curls in the squat rack! That should be outlawed…Haha…

  2. Michael made a good point, your back is looking strong! I went back and looked at some older videos, not only the back, but you’ve really transformed your entire body. Kudos to you!

    I can’t remember where that article is you wrote about life before working out, but I can recall the images you posted. You’ve done very well for yourself in making this life changing choice with fitness. Keep up the great work and on a selfish note, keep the workouts coming! 🙂

    1. Thanks Brian! I am sure everyone will be able to look back at their progress and see the difference in their strength, physique and confidence – just as I can 🙂

  3. Cute picture of you in a cowboy hat. Southern girl from Ireland(?).

    Film some video of you doing pull ups using the outside of the bar (the bent part). Those are difficult and really work the lats. I only do those since other types of pull ups are relatively easy.

  4. Hey MK: The definition of your upper back and shoulder muscles is impressive …they really stand out as you’re performing the dumbbell laterals. Do you attribute this primarily to Kettlebell work or mostly to the pull-ups/chin-ups?

    1. Thanks Michael. I think it’s a bit of everything; KBs, Body weight chins, Barbell lifts. The traps have developed a lot from Deads, but I also think from the Vertical Swing Burpees!

      Variety of training will hit every muscle 🙂

  5. Hi marianne & Nia,

    Uh why does it seem like Nia aint doing anything but pushing you around & goofing around lol….I’m kidding wish I was there working out with you guys looks like fun. And did you guys kick everyone out the gym lol…..I wish my gym was that empty. Keep representing for the ladys!!!

    Marianne theres this move you where doing where you have 2 D. BEllS and you bring them in front of you (arms extended & your standing position) is that for your shoulders or chest? Looks like the butterfly but standing. I need to switch up my upper body routine, how important do you think it is to include a day where you’re focusing on pull ups, dips, push ups you know to increase strengh & to train those little muscles you cant while performing isolated movements? Perfect example theirs this guy @ the gym he’s got good size arms, he lifts heavy but needs assistance to performe push ups, how is that possible? Speaking of assistance, today @ the gym I perfomed 3 dips without any help….YEAH!! Cant wait til my strength increases on my pull ups,
    cant do any with my own body weight yet, but I’m working on it. I usually do isolated moves once a week & conditioning twice week. I thinking of adding a day for push ups, dips, pull ups….because I’m trying to increase size & definition (not bulky tho) Let me know what you think, and enjoy the rest of your trip


    1. Hey Cita, That was a shoulder exercise. It helps bring out the shape in the delts, but I wouldn’t say it’s a “functional” exercise. I honestly think you should have an upper body strength day when you focus on exercises that give you more bang for your buck. Not only that but Dips, Pull Ups, Push Ups and Rows are so important for strengthening your body in more planes of movement, therefore ensuring a more balanced workout.

      That guy,who couldn’t do push ups, probably has no core strength, poor form and improper scapulae movements. If you only ever do isolation exercises, then this is what happens … you have no function in your movement patterns and are never going to get stronger 🙁

      Well done with your dips 😀 Great work!

  6. That was great! You’re back is looking fabulous girl!

    I loved Nia’s leap in the background, she looked like a gazelle! Hi Nia! 🙂

  7. Ha ha, Warrant – Onkel Toms cabin in high speed, hilarious. You girls rock, looking forward to some more KB workouts

  8. Love the cowgirl picture!!
    Great workout. Feels like I’m right there with you. (without the pain)lol
    Why do you stand one foot ahead of the other?
    Enjoy the rest of your trip. Sounds so fun!!

    1. Thanks Laurie 🙂

      For the overhead presses? That’s to stabilise my low back and pelvis. Better base for balancing a head load overhead, much safer for the low back and my SI Joint.

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