Workout Details

  • Duration: 37 Minutes
  • Calorie Burn: 140-275
  • Difficulty: 4/5
  • Equipment: Bench, Dumbbell
  • Training Type: Low Impact, Strength Training, Toning
Body Focus Upper Body,  Core

Upper Body Workout for Coordination and Control - Isolated Functional Strength Workout


This is a uniquely challenging upper body workout that is bound to leave you sore tomorrow and probably in places you would not expect.

We have decided to shake up the typical in this workout by focusing on the left and right side of your body independently. We have done this for a few reasons. First, it is a great way to isolate a specific muscle or muscle group allowing us work that one specific muscle more effectively and without “help” from any other muscles or movements. Secondly, changing up your movements from your regular routine causes “muscle confusion”. This means that we are working the muscles in a way that they have not become accustomed to or efficient at which allows us to make more progress in control, strength, size, endurance and/or calorie burn. Lastly, by causing the body to do these exercises with the weight only on one side, it causes the core to have to compensate for the imbalance, turning this upper body workout into a core strengthening workout as well that also improves core function and control.

Related: 4 Week FB Mass - Workout Program to Build Mass & Increase Strength

A note about the difficulty rating on our strength workouts: We typically rate our lifting routines 3/5 by default because they can easily be made a 2/5 by lifting little/no weight, or 5/5 difficulty by lifting heavily enough to really challenge yourself. This one is rated a 4/5 because of the coordination being called upon with some of the moves, but you can still keep the difficulty low by lifting a low amount of weight (we recommend lifting light until you're confident in form and then increasing weight). With our strength routines, you are ultimately the one who decides whether it's a 2 or 5 difficulty workout.

Because of the way we will be doing each of these exercises you may notice that you will have to lower the amount of weight you would normally do. Don’t be discouraged, this is completely normal and will not lessen the effectiveness of the routine. Though this is definitely a strength workout, it also challenges your mind-body connection to improve control and your body’s ability to adapt more readily to changing physical demands.

We have included a warm up and cool down with this routine though a more thorough warm up may be needed if you have come from being sedentary for a significant amount of time. Also if you feel you are excessively tight when finished with the routine you may want to add extra time and stretches onto your cool down.

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Printable Functional Strength Workout:

Workout Structure
- 2 Groups of Upper Body Exercises
- 2 Sets Each Exercise; 45 On 15 Off
- AB AB Interval Pattern

- Dumbbells (we use adjustable PowerBlocks)
- Bench (optional)

Warm Up / Cool Down
- Both Included

Warm Up: 5 Min (30 Sec Each)
- Side Step Arm Cross
- Overhead Tricep and Side Bend L
- Overhead Tricep and Side Bend R
- Big Arm Circles
- Squatting Push Pull
- Lunging Overhead Push Pull
- Toe Touch w/ Dorsal Arm Stretch
- Boxer Shuffle 
- Front Jacks
- Fly Jacks

Strength Section 1: 8 Min Total (45 On, 15 Off; 2 Sets Each Exercise; AB AB Pattern)
- Bicep Isolation Curl L
- Overhead Tricep Extension L

- Bicep Isolation Curl R
- Overhead Tricep Extension R

--- Water Break ---

Strength Section 2: 16 Min Total (45 On, 15 Off; 2 Sets Each Exercise; AB AB Pattern)
- Chest Fly L
- Bent Over Reverse Fly L

- Chest Fly R
- Bent Over Reverse Fly R

- Lateral Raise L
- Lateral Dumbbell Pullover L

- Lateral Raise R
- Lateral Dumbbell Pullover R

Cool Down: 5 Min (30 Second each)
- Arm Cross Stretch (L&R)
- Overhead Tricep and Torso Stretch (L&R)
- Wall Chest Stretch (L&R)
- Wall Overhead Shoulder Stretch
- Toe Touch Dorsal Arm Stretch
- Forearm Stretch (L&R)

Total Calories:
140 - 275