New brides often find it challenging to balance the wedding planning with finding the time to take care of their bodies. After all, this is THE most important day of your life and all the eyes are going to be on you. So, between invitations and flower arrangements for the big day, the last thing you may want to do at the end of a stressful day is workout. But, who says working out has to be hard and tiring? The right Pilates workout allows you to tone up your trouble spots without wearing you out. Here are five moves that we suggest you do to tone your arms up for that perfect dress!
1. Water Drop
Seated on the edge of a sturdy chair, keep your back in a straight line and constrict your abdominals. Using your water bottle or canned food as weight, lift your arms over your head while holding the weight with both hands. Lower the weight behind your head by bending your elbows until you feel a strong resistance or the weight touches your back. Slowly lift the weight back above your head, keeping your abs tight and your back straight. Repeat.
2. Easy Arm Extensions
Grasp a weight in each hand while keeping your abs tight and your knees slightly bent. With back straight, lower your upper body by hinging your hips forward to about a 45 degree angle from your lower body. Extend your arms back as though you are handing your weights to someone behind you, all without moving your upper arms. Slowly curl your arms back into the starting position and pause before repeating.
3. Twisted Raise
Stand again with your feet hip-width apart, while slightly bending your knees and holding your weights in the palms of each hand. Let your arms hang naturally by your sides with your palms facing the side of your thigh. Keeping your shoulders down, lift your arms straight out from your sides, keeping them in one vertical plane with the rest of your body. Rotate your arms, turning your palms toward the ceiling. Hold for 5 seconds before rolling your palms back toward the floor.
4. Triceps Dips
Seated on the edge of a chair, place your hands behind your hips, using your palms to support your body weight. Angle your elbows outward before lowering your hips slowly toward the floor. Keeping your body angled slightly forward, straighten your elbows, but stop the motion before they are completely straightened (do not lock your elbows).
5. Slow Row
Sitting on your towel or yoga mat with your legs straight, wrap a T-shirt or towel behind the soles of your feet. Grasping one end of the shirt or towel in each of your hands, push your shoulders and elbows back so that your elbows are behind you. This motion should provide enough resistance to give the shirt or towel a firm stretch. Slowly return to your starting position and pause for a few seconds between repetitions.
Kloey is the owner of Hot Body Pilates, a nationally acclaimed Pilates studio in the heart of the Gaslamp. Learn more: www.hotbodypilates.com