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Walking Workout: Tone Your Arms As You Walk

This quick and effective routine pairs arm toning exercises with your regular walking workout, so you firm your upper body while you walk off the weight.

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Sarah Kehoe
Sarah Kehoe
Sarah Kehoe
Sarah Kehoe
One-arm reverse flye
Sarah Kehoe
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30-Minute Upper-Body Blitz

Forget hand weights or park-bench push-ups. You can walk your way to sleek shoulders, a sculpted back and toned arms without them. "Just making fists with your hands for these moves signals the arm muscles to contract and adds a little extra burn," says walking pro Tina Vindum.

The Routine
Warm up by doing three big, slow arm circles in each direction to prime your shoulder joints. Walk for 5 minutes, then do the first exercise here, matching the pace of the arm movements to your footfalls -- no stopping! Repeat until you've done all four moves; finish with 5 minutes of walking.

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Upright Row

Targets: Shoulders, upper back, and abs

  • Make a fist with each hand and start with hands near hips, palms facing you.
  • Bring both fists up to armpits, skimming torso with knuckles and keeping elbows bent out to sides higher than hands throughout movement.
  • Squeeze shoulder blades and upper-back muscles together to draw elbows back, raising fists to shoulder height.
  • Lower hands to start.
  • Do 25 reps.

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Chest Press

Targets: Chest, biceps, and abs

  • Make a fist with each hand, arms straight down by sides, palms forward. (Beginners can keep hands open.)
  • Keeping shoulders down and back, contract abs and lift both arms straight in front of you, palms up, to press pinkies together at shoulder height.
  • Squeeze chest, then lower arms to start.
  • Do 25 reps.

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Lateral Press

Targets: Shoulders and triceps

  • Make a fist with each hand and raise elbows out to sides at shoulder height, fists at armpits, palms facing in.
  • Keeping elbows fixed at shoulder height (as if you have a broomstick over shoulders), slowly swing fists down until they're perpendicular to ground and then out, ending with arms extended straight out to sides, palms facing behind you.
  • Bend elbows to return to start.
  • Do 25 reps.

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One-Arm Reverse Flye

Target: Shoulders

  • Place left hand on left hip and, making a fist with right hand, rest it on top of left hand, palm facing in. Draw shoulders down and back.
  • With right elbow slightly bent, lift right arm on a diagonal to right and up, ending with right hand slightly higher than right shoulder, palm forward.
  • Lower right arm to return to start.
  • Do 25 reps. Switch arms, repeat.

Originally published in FITNESS magazine, April 2009.

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What do you think? Review this slideshow!

dorislong2 wrote:

The description was a little vague. More photos of the positions would perhaps been helpful.

7/27/2012 05:13:28 PM Report Abuse
helen_tytova wrote:

Thank you so much! Really effective although so simple! Great!

4/9/2012 03:52:43 PM Report Abuse
lyndseymaass wrote:

@at70929 Aliciaennis is right, you're not looking to add muscle with these moves, you're using your own body to tone your body. Lose a little of those "mom arms!"

6/25/2011 03:15:38 PM Report Abuse
mansel2 wrote:

I think you need more pictures of the form. Words alone is not enough

5/15/2011 09:45:12 AM Report Abuse
Aliciaennis wrote:

Realistically you won't be adding muscle to your arms. What you will be doing with these movements is adding variety to your walking and upping your heart rate with the extra movement. Worth doing once in awhile.

4/17/2011 08:39:30 AM Report Abuse
jmaruschak1 wrote:

Love this! Thanks!

4/16/2011 08:12:34 AM Report Abuse
at70929 wrote:

This is stupid! Without weights? Great, that burned a total of 3 calories!

4/5/2011 10:07:42 AM Report Abuse
sb_lascruces wrote:

I tried 3 of them as I was sitting here looking thru the moves and I could only do 3 of each much less 25. Need to step up my exercising i see.

1/25/2010 01:31:26 PM Report Abuse
discreetlymh wrote:

These exercises look like they will get the job done. But I have a problem getting motivated and staying motivated. "Determined"

1/13/2010 03:02:18 AM Report Abuse
kate_hurst2003 wrote:

This is one of the best sites

1/11/2010 10:24:36 AM Report Abuse

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FITNESS Magazine, April 2009
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