Want strong, toned arms and sculpted shoulders? This workout by Sweat Trainer Chontel Duncan is designed to do just that! Targeting all the major muscle groups of the upper body, each circuit will go for 8 minutes, with a 1-minute break in between circuits, for a total workout time of 17 minutes. The goal is to complete as many laps of the circuit as you can (with good technique) in 8 minutes. This structure is suitable for all fitness levels, as you can go at your own pace or challenge yourself, raising the intensity to get as far as you can.

Circuit 1 – 8 minutes

Bench Press – Dumbell – 12 reps

Bent-Over Row – Barbell – 12 reps

Decline Mountain Climber – Bench – 20 reps

Rest – 30 seconds

Circuit Rest – 60 seconds

Circuit 2 – 8 minutes

Shoulder Press – Dumbbell – 10 reps

Renegade Row – Dumbell – 16 reps

Bent-Leg Jackknife – Dumbell – 15 reps

Rest – 30 seconds

Circuit 1:

Bench Press (DB) 12 Reps

chontel duncan upper body workout

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Step 1

Holding one dumbbell in each hand with an overhand grip (palms facing away from your body), lie down on a bench and plant your feet on the floor on either side of the bench, or on the bench itself — whichever is most comfortable. Extend your elbows to hold the dumbbells directly in front of your chest. This is your starting position.

Step 2

Inhale. Bend your elbows outwards to lower the dumbbells towards your chest until your arms form two
90-degree angles, like an inverted push-up.

Step 3

Exhale. Extend your elbows and push the dumbbells away from your chest to return to the starting position.

Repeat for the specified number of repetitions.

Bent-Over Row (BB) 12 Reps

chontel duncan upper body workout

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Step 1

Holding a barbell in both hands with an underhand grip (palms facing away from you), hands shoulder-width apart, plant both feet on the floor shoulder-width apart. While maintaining a slight bend in your knees, hinge forward from your hips so that your torso is parallel to the floor. Extend your arms directly below your chest. This is your starting position.

Step 2

Inhale. Exhale. Bend your elbows to bring the barbell in towards your lower ribs, ensuring your elbows remain in close contact with the sides of your body. You should feel a small squeeze between your shoulder blades.

Step 3

Inhale. Extend your elbows to lower the barbell and return to the starting position.

Repeat for the specified number of repetitions.

Decline Mountain Climber 20 Reps

upper body workout chontel duncan sweat

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Step 1

Place a bench horizontally behind you. Place both hands on a yoga mat shoulder-width apart with your feet together on the bench behind you, resting on the balls of your feet. This is your starting position.

Step 2

While keeping your right foot on the bench, bend your left knee and bring it into your chest.

Step 3

Extend your left knee to return to the starting position, ensuring that your foot is firmly planted on the bench before continuing.

Step 4

Keeping your left foot on the bench, bend your right knee and bring it into your chest.

Step 5

Extend your right knee and return to the starting position. Ensure that your foot is firmly planted on the bench before continuing. Continue alternating between left and right for the specified number of repetitions, inhaling for two repetitions and exhaling for two repetitions.

Circuit 2 – 8 minutes

Shoulder Press 10 Reps

chontel duncan sweat trainer upper body workout

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Step 1

Set an incline bench to an 85-degree incline. Holding two dumbbells with an overhand grip (palms facing away from your body) directly in front of your chest, sit on the bench and plant both feet on the floor hip-width apart. This is your starting position.

Step 2

Inhale. Exhale. Using the muscles in both your shoulders and arms, extend your elbows to press the dumbbells above your head. Avoid “shrugging” by drawing your shoulder blades down and back.

Step 3

Inhale. Bend your elbows to lower the dumbbells into your chest to return to the starting position. Repeat for the specified number of repetitions.

Renegade Row 16 Reps (8 each side)

chontel duncan sweat trainer upper body workout

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Step 1

Holding one dumbbell in each hand, position your hands on the mat shoulder-width apart and both feet slightly apart behind you, resting on your knees. This is your starting position.

Step 2

Inhale. Exhale. Release your right hand and bend your elbow to draw the dumbbell in towards you, ensuring that your elbow remains in close contact with the right side of your body. You should feel a small squeeze between your shoulder blades. Brace your abdominals to ensure that your hips remain parallel to (in line with) the floor.

Step 3

Inhale. Extend your right elbow to return to the starting position.

Step 4

Exhale. Release your left hand and bend your elbow to draw the dumbbell in towards you, ensuring that your elbow remains in close contact with the left side of your body. You should feel a small squeeze between your shoulder blades. Brace your abdominals to ensure that your hips remain parallel to (in line with) the floor.

Step 5

Inhale. Extend your left elbow to return to the starting position. Continue alternating between right and left for the specified number of repetitions.

Bent-Leg Jackknife 15 Reps

upper body workout sweat trainer chontel duncan

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Step 1

Start by lying on your back on a yoga mat with your arms extended above your head. Engage your abdominal muscles by drawing your belly button in towards your spine and elevate your legs off the mat slightly. This is your starting position.

Step 2

Inhale. Bend your knees and using your abdominals, draw them in towards your chest, ensuring that your feet stay together. At the same time, bring your arms forward towards your feet, slowly lifting your head, shoulder blades and torso off the mat.

Step 3

Exhale. Slowly lower your arms and extend your legs to return to the starting position, but without lowering your feet to the floor.

Repeat for the specified number of repetitions.

You can find more of Chonte’s workouts on the SWEAT app. Click here for more info!





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