The 20 Minute Toned Arms Workout

“You want a ticket to the gun show?” How many people have you heard repeat that question in your lifetime? I mean that has to be one of the ultimate #dadjokes to date.

But hey, it’s totally okay to be proud of your arms. I mean a lot of hard work goes into sculpting them. They make for the perfect accessory, and not to mention, they look great in tank tops, wedding dresses, swimsuits, etc.

And the days of thinking bicep curls are only for men is completely over (as is thinking protein is only for men, obvi). Women too can benefit from weight training and lifting heavy. Because women don’t produce as much testosterone as men they won’t see huge gains. So you won’t be ripping out of your shirt when you lift weights.

The truth of the matter is that all things take time. Building muscle is no exception. You need to put in a lot of work to see results. Your arms aren’t going to explode, instead, you will have shapely arms with nice definition when you put in the work.

Um, yes please.

Here is an easy 20-minute workout that will help you build those tight, toned arms you want.

Feel the burn with this 20 Minute Workout

Perform 12-15 reps of each move, starting the second move in the superset immediately with no rest in-between. Rest one minute between supersets, repeating each superset three times before moving on to the next one.

A superset is designed to challenge your muscles by making them perform two different moves back-to-back without any rest. You’ll feel the burn, but that means your muscles are getting increased blood flow and growing stronger!

Tip: Warm up and cool down before and after you workout to prevent muscle soreness, wake up your muscles, and help prevent injury.

Superset #1:

Barbell Curl

Lindsey performing barbell curl

Stand upright and hold your barbell at shoulder-width with an underhand grip. Hold your upper arms stationary, and slowly curl the weights up until your biceps are fully contracted, hold for a second then return to start. That’s one rep.

Cable tricep extension

Lindsey performing tricep pushdown

Grab the bar that is attached to a high pulley with an overhand grip at shoulder width. Stand upright and bring your upper arms perpendicular to the floor, and keep your upper arms close to your body. Bring the bar down until it comes close to your thighs and your arms are fully extended. Hold for a second, then slowly bring your arms back to the starting position. That’s one rep.

Do one set of each exercise without resting between. Then rest 1 minute. Repeat the superset 3 times total. Then move on to superset #2.

Superset #2:

Alternating Dumbbell Curl

Lindsey performing alternating barbell curl

Stand upright and hold your dumbbell with the palm of your hand facing forward. Hold your upper arms stationary, and curl the weight up until your bicep is fully contracted, hold for a second, then slowly return to start. Repeat on the other side. That’s one rep.

Skull Crushers


This can be completed with either a barbell, EZ bar or dumbbells. Laying flat on your back on a bench, hold your weights with your elbows in and your arms perpendicular to the floor. Keep your upper arms stationary as you lower the weight down to directly above your forehead. Lift the weights back to starting position. That’s one rep.

Do one set of each exercise without resting between. Then rest 1 minute. Repeat the superset 3 times total. Then move on to superset #3.

Superset #3:

Cable Curl

Stand upright with your torso straight, and hold the bar attached to a low pulley at shoulder width, keeping your elbows close to your torso. With the palms of your hands facing up. Keeping your elbows close to your torso and your upper arms stationary, curl the weight until your biceps are fully contracted and at shoulder level. Hold for a second, then return to starting position. That’s one rep.

Tricep Kickback

Position yourself on a bench with your right knee on the bench and the left foot off, and your right hand resting on the bench underneath your shoulder. Keeping your left upper arm still, kick back your forearm until your arm is parallel to the floor, then squeeze your triceps at the top. Bring it back down to start. Repeat 12-15 times. Then switch to the other side.

Do one set of each exercise without resting between. Then rest 1 minute. Repeat the superset 3 times total.

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1. Lift heavy enough that you are putting a strain on your muscles—this is when you will see the best results.

2. But don’t lift too heavy that your form is poor. Improper form can lead to injury, so always make sure that you are performing the exercise right.

3. Other exercises, like rows, push-ups, presses, that also work other parts of the body-also work your arms. Compound exercises are so great!

4. For more workouts, along with meal plans, tips and tricks, and support, try my free 15 Day Fit Body Challenge. So many women have seen such amazing results using this challenge, and I know you can too.

Life is busy! Between work, picking up kids from school, running errands, and all else on your plate, you don’t always have time to spend hours upon hours of time in the gym. That is why I love quick workouts like this. Get in, sweat it out, get out, then continue on your day.

Recover With BCAAs

Because we are go-go-go all the time, I also love to use individual packs of BCAAs that I can keep in my bag for convenience. Whether you are out-and-about, running errands, or on vacation, these are the perfect option. I also love them because they give me the option to try out multiple flavors to find which ones I love best. Hint: my favorite is Grape Explosion.

As to why you need BCAAs? They help prevent muscle soreness, maximize your hard work in the gym, and aid in the development of lean muscle. Plus IdealLean BCAAs contain a Fat Loss Blend to help you stay lean and lose fat, coconut water powder to keep you hydrated during your workout, and they don’t contain any fat, sugar, or carbs so you can stay on top of your fitness goals.

Lindsey Mathews

Lindsey Mathews

Head Trainer & Nutritionist

Lindsey Mathews is the Head Trainer and Nutritionist at IdealFit. She is a NSCA-CSCS certified personal trainer, C-ISSN certified sports nutritionist, Pn. 1 certified nutrition coach, and a nationally qualified NPC bikini competitor. Before joining IdealFit, she ran the largest boot camp program in Utah County.

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