Time Under Tension Strong Arms Routine!

There’s one aspect of strength training that you may be missing out on…. TIME UNDER TENSION!

Time under tension refers to how long a muscle is under load or strain during a set.

Here’s how to accomplish that… Lift slower, for longer! 

This is a quick tip to learn how to maximize your results by slowing down your reps while strength training. Start with a 3-4 second lift  and then lower the weight for 5-6 seconds. This slower lifting and lowering creates TUT… more time under tension and helps maximize your results. 

Using TUT in today’s 15-minute upper body workout will help define your shoulders and arms in record time. You’ll need a set of dumbbells (3 to 15 pounds, depending on level) and a workout mat… 

To sculpt your arms and upper body, add these moves to your routine 2x/week for 4 weeks.

As a bonus, these are also functional exercises that target all your major muscle groups, training them to work in concert…which improves your entire body in less time! 



Kathy Smith Lunge with Tricep Kickback What it does:

  • This version of the lunge is an excellent sculptor for the glutes, quadriceps, hamstrings, triceps and core. This is a true functional move because it combines so many muscle groups in one movement.

How to do it:

  • Holding a dumbbell in each hand, step your left foot directly behind you, taking a wide stance, and bend your legs, lowering your torso down into a lunge. Be sure and maintain that core stability to prevent injury.
  • While in lunge position, keep your shoulders over your hips, back knee slightly bent, front knee in alignment with your front toes, shoulders back and down.
  • Feel your weight in your right (front) heel as you push yourself to standing.
  • As you return to standing, do a tricep kickback: Reach your arms back behind you and extend, feeling a squeeze in the tricep.



sumo-squat-with-cross-chop2 How to do it:

  • Take a wide stance with your toes turned slightly out, holding dumbbells pressed together at chest level.
  • Lower down into a sumo squat, making sure those abs are engaged, weights hanging straight down in front of you.
  • As you push back up to standing, feel the inner thighs, glutes and core muscles working together to control the movement.
  • At the same time, bring the weights toward your chest with a bicep curl.
  • Rotate to your right: Keeping your wide stance and core engaged, feel your weight planted in the right foot and let the left foot pivot as your torso rotates to the right. You should feel as if this entire movement is driven by obliques.
  • Bring the weights down toward the ground in a controlled chopping motion, just behind your right hip. Squeeze your left glute as you chop.
  • Curl the weights back toward the chest as you rotate the torso back to your starting position.



1. Begin standing with your feet hip-distance apart and your arms at your sides. Breathe slowly.
2. Press your weight into your right foot. Lift your left leg as you lower your torso, bringing your body parallel to the ground.
3. Flex your left foot and reach through your heel, as if you’re pressing a wall behind you.
4. Keep the muscles of both legs engaged.
5. Slowly lift your arms parallel to the floor, and return back down. Repeat five times. You may need to lower the hip of your raised leg slightly in order to bring your hips parallel to your mat.
6. To release, exhale as you softly lower your left foot back to the floor. Repeat the pose on the opposite side.


  1. Stand with dumbbells in each hand in hammerhead position, with palms facing each other.
  2. Step out to the right side, with a wide stance. Bend the right leg and lower your hips down as you keep the left leg straight out to the side, feeling a slight stretch in the left inner thigh.
  3. Pressing off the right foot, keeping your core engaged, push yourself back up to standing.
  4. As you return to standing, curl the weights up toward your shoulders, squeezing the muscles on the front of the arms for a bicep curl.