10 strength exercises to eradicate underarm fat in your 40s

Underarm fat is the fat that accumulates around the triceps, just below the shoulder. Second only to belly fat in terms of how difficult it is to burn and how frustrating it looks, shrinking and toning underarm fat (aka “bingo wings” or “turkey wings”) should be a top priority when it comes to build a rounded physical well. This is where we step in to help you with 10 of the best strength exercises to get rid of underarm fat in your 40s.

To achieve this fat loss goal, you need to focus on burning overall body fat through a combination of resistance training and a diet that results in a calorie deficit. That said, targeting the triceps, biceps, and latissimus dorsi area is an excellent way to tone the area under and around the upper arm which can help offset underarm fat and lead to an overall tonic. Additionally, performing lower-body exercises can help burn body fat and build muscle, which further boosts your metabolism and helps you stay toned and lean.

The following workout includes exercises that cover many areas of your body with a focus on the upper arm and lats area while not neglecting the lower body. Perform each exercise for three sets of 10 reps. You can break your workout into multiple sessions, but aim to complete at least two rounds a week. Read on to learn all about the 10 best strength exercises to get rid of underarm fat in your 40s.

illustration of triceps dips
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Triceps dips are effective in combating underarm fat as they target the triceps muscle area often associated with “bat wings.” This exercise will strengthen and tone the muscle, making it more defined.

To perform a triceps dip, place your hands shoulder-width apart on a secure bench or sturdy chair. Move your pelvis in front of the bench with your legs stretched out in front of you and your feet flat on the floor. Lower your body toward the floor until your elbows form a 90-degree angle, making sure to keep your back close to the bench. Use your triceps to bring your body back to the starting position. Repeat for target repetitions.

RELATED: 9 Firming Exercises to Get Rid of Underarm Fat

illustration, concept of standing bicep curls with dumbbells to tone your arms in 30 days
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Standing bicep curls are important for toning the bicep muscle and help maintain the overall shape of your arms.

To perform a standing biceps curl, stand upright with a dumbbell in each hand, arms straight out and palms facing forward. Keep your elbows close to your torso and curl the weights as you contract your biceps. Make sure you keep your upper arm still. Hold this position for a second as you squeeze the muscle. Slowly lower the dumbbells to the starting position. Repeat for target repetitions.

Side plank with arm raise
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Planks with lateral arm raises are not only core exercises, but also target the shoulders, triceps and biceps, thus making them a great exercise for tackling underarm fat.

To perform a lateral arm lift plank, start in the side plank position with your forearm under your shoulder and your feet stacked. Keeping your torso stable, slowly raise your left arm out to the side to shoulder height. Return arm to plank position. Repeat the movement with your right arm. Repeat for target repetitions.

woman doing push ups on exercise mat, white background
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Push-ups target your chest and arms, helping burn fat and build muscle in these areas.

To perform a pushup, start in a plank pushup position with your hands under your shoulders. Engage your core and keep your spine in a braced neutral position. Lower yourself to the ground by bending your elbows and shoulders. When your chest is about an inch off the ground, push evenly through both hands to return to the starting position. Don’t allow your hips to sag during the movement. Repeat for target repetitions.

RELATED: 5 Best Daily Arm Exercises for Women After 50

illustration of overhead triceps extension
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Next on this list of strength exercises to get rid of underarm fat is the overhead triceps extension. This exercise specifically targets the triceps and is excellent for combating underarm flab.

To perform an overhead triceps extension, stand upright with a dumbbell held in both hands. Your feet should be shoulder-width apart. Raise the dumbbell over your head until both arms are fully extended. Keeping your upper arms close to your head and your elbows in, lower the weight behind your head until your forearms touch your biceps. Return the dumbbell to the starting position by contracting the triceps and exhaling. Repeat for target repetitions.

illustration of bent over row with dumbbells to get rid of armpit fat
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The bent-over row targets your back muscles and biceps. These muscles support the underarm area and strengthening them helps reduce underarm fat.

To perform a bent-over row, stand with feet shoulder-width apart and hold a dumbbell in each hand. Bend your knees slightly and lean forward by bending at the waist. Keep your back straight until it’s almost parallel to the floor. Let the dumbbells hang directly in front of you with your arms perpendicular to the floor and your elbows close to your body. Keep your torso still as you lift the dumbbells to your side, squeezing your back muscles as if you were squashing a piece of fruit under your armpit at the end of the movement. Make sure you avoid shrugging during the movement. After a short pause at the top, inhale as you slowly lower the dumbbells back to starting position. Repeat for target repetitions.

woman doing side lunges to get rid of armpit fat
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Lateral lunges are full-body movements that target the glutes, hamstrings, and quadriceps, but also require upper body strength and stability. While they don’t directly target underarm fat, they do increase overall fat burning, contributing to all-around body fat loss.

To perform a side lunge, start by standing with your feet hip-width apart. Step out to the right, turning your right foot slightly inward, and shift your body weight onto your right leg, squatting down at a 90-degree angle at the knee. The left leg should stand straight with the foot firmly on the floor. Push back to the starting position with your right foot. Repeat the movement with the left leg, turning the left foot inward as you lower your body. Repeat for target repetitions.

RELATED: 7 Exercise Habits That Are Wrecking Your Arms After 50

illustration of back squat with barbell to get rid of armpit fat
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Barbell back squats are an excellent exercise for overall body strength and conditioning. They work numerous muscles in your body, promoting fat burning and muscle building throughout the body, including the underarm area.

To perform a barbell back squat, start by placing a barbell at shoulder height on a squat rack. If available, place safety pins just above waist level. Stand with your feet slightly wider than hip-width apart and place the barbell across the back of your shoulders. Lower your body as if you were sitting in a chair, keeping your chest up. Go back up to the starting position. Make sure you push through your entire foot and keep your knees in line with your toes. Repeat for target repetitions.

illustration of lat pulldown to get rid of armpit fat
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The lat pulldown is great for developing the large back muscles responsible for arm movement, contributing to a toned underarm appearance.

To perform a lat pulldown, start by sitting in a lat pulldown station and gripping the bar with an overhand grip just beyond shoulder width. Lower the bar to your chest, retract your shoulder blades, and visualize squeezing a piece of fruit under your armpit as you reach your final range of motion. Make sure you avoid shrugging during the movement. Pause briefly, then slowly return the bar to the starting position. Repeat for target repetitions.

rocker skull crusher illustration
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The last of these exercises to get rid of underarm fat is the skull crusher. Skull crushers specifically target the triceps and help shed underarm fat by strengthening and toning this area.

To perform skull crushes, lie on your back on a bench and hold a barbell with your hands shoulder-width apart. Extend your arms fully above your chest, but keep your elbows slightly bent to protect your joints. Lower the bar by bending your elbows and hold the contraction at the end for about a second. Return the barbell to the starting position by flexing your triceps. Repeat for target repetitions.

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