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Best Arm and Shoulder Workouts to Rock That Bridesmaid Dress

It’s time for another installment of our exciting new series of guest posts from some of the awesome fitness professionals at BeFiT. Each month, these good folks will be bringing you tips, workouts and more to help you be your fittest! Such as this post with how you can boost your arm and shoulder strength to rock that bridesmaid dress from Maddy Curley.


About Maddy Curley

Maddy Curley became CrossFit certified in October 2008. Maddy is currently on the Level 1 Seminar Staff and the CrossFit Gymnastics staff and loves to coach. Before that, she coached gymnasts from age 2 to 65 for more than 10 years and earned a full gymnastics scholarship at the University of North Carolina, was a four-time Academic All-American and a member of Phi Beta Kappa. She has since used her knowledge of body-weight conditioning and Olympic lifting to coach countless people into shape. She believes in helping people achieve their goals!


Always the Bridesmaid, Never the Bride: 7 Tips to Rock Your Bridesmaids Dress

Having been a bridesmaid NINE times, I know the excitement/panic that happens when you are asked to walk down the aisle. Fear not, below are the tips you need to get your arms and shoulders looking fit and fabulous.

1. Make a workout plan. You have at least six weeks to get ready. (And if you’re reading this a week before the wedding, don’t worry, I have tricks for you, too!) If you really want to go for it and make changes, make a plan. Schedule workouts in your agenda or phone the night before. I know you’re busy, but if you look at your schedule ahead of time and write it down, you can make the time. And I’m not saying you have to go to a gym. You can spend just SEVEN minutes working out and see vast improvements! Check out this at-home 7-minute workout here or below:

2. Everything in moderation. I hate diets. HATE them. That said, nutrition is by far the most important ingredient to fitness gains! Thus, I recommend portion control. Try to eat as healthy as you can and keep sweets to just a couple bites here and there. That way you can still curb the craving for the delicious sugar, but not go overboard or binge on it because you’re on a diet. If you’ve told yourself you can never have something until after the wedding, it’ll just make you want it more.

A friend of mine said, “When you feel like quitting, ask yourself why you started.” Or maybe I saw it on Instagram. Either way, it’s inspiration to keep eating clean.

3. Push-ups and dumbbells. Push-ups are hard and weight training is hard, but guess what? They work! Order a pair of dumbbells online and you’ll open yourself up to a plethora of workout movements, some you might have never even tried or heard of before!

Try three rounds of these movements for a quick arm burn:

  • 10 push presses
  • 10 thrusters
  • 10 snatches, each arm
  • 10 bicep curls
  • 10 tricep kick backs, each arm


Or try this four-minute Tabata push-ups workout:

You’ll do as many push-ups as you can for 20 seconds and then rest for 10 seconds for eight rounds. That’s only four minutes of work, but believe me, you will feel your triceps taking gorgeous shape as you work. And yes, knee push-ups count!

4. Contact other bridesmaids … or simply a friend. I love to work out with my friends and, chances are, your friends will be excited you asked them to work out, too. I can’t remember the last time I’ve asked a friend to try a class with me or work out with me and they said, “no.” Unless they were out of town or had an injury, it just doesn’t happen! So don’t be afraid to ask.

In fact, I dare you to ask any athlete who their closest friends are and they will most likely name a teammate. Sweating and endorphins go hand in hand. Go BOND, baby!

5. Compete with yourself. If you want to get the most out of a workout, you should be trying your hardest. Sounds obvious, right? But if you’re working out at home or in the gym alone that can be really hard. I like to do workouts that I can keep score and then try them again later and see if I can beat my score. For instance, try the workout in tip no. 3 and time it. Then next week, try it again and see if you can beat your score!

Here’s another workout that just takes a kettlebell and dumbbells (you can just use one dumbbell if you don’t have a kettlebell).

6. Spray tan! Okay, this might only work for pale girls like me, but I swear every time I spray tan someone asks me if I lost weight.

Finally and most importantly …

7. Be happy. You’re a bridesmaid! That means someone likes you enough to have you walk down the aisle with her — and she likes you just the way you are.

What other tips do you have for feeling great in that bridesmaid dress? —Maddy

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