Have I mentioned that delt day is my favorite? I’m not sure why that is, exactly, but the funny thing is that my shoulders are what got me started in real weight lifting. About 20 years ago, I had rotator cuff issues that eventually sent me to physical therapy. My PT had me start lifting (very tiny) weights with my slipped shoulder in order to strengthen the muscles around the screwy joint. It worked and even though I still have some popping, I’ve never had pain or tearing since.
I’ve always had pretty strong shoulders. I grew up in the early 90s, and I was that girl ripping all the shoulderpads out of her blouses and dresses because, unlike all my friends, I didn’t seem to need them! I have naturally broad shoulders for my frame, but I like that about me. Maybe that’s why I love delt day?
You ready? Here we go!
- Seated Leg Pull-in. Good low ab work. Go ’til you cain’t go no mo’.
- Cable Half-kneeling Antirotation Press
- Dumbell Arnold Press. I do these in combination with the rear delt rows in a superset. One set of Arnold presses and then one set of delt rows (x3) gives each muscle set a break while keeping me busy and my heartrate up.
- Dumbbell Rear Delt Row – make sure you don’t pull your arm past parallel to your shoulder, so your rear delt stays engaged the whole time. I do these kneeling on my bench instead of standing, so I can just focus on my arms.
- Dumbbell Standing Press. I do these in combination with lateral raises as a superset.
- Dumbbell Lateral Raise
Lifting usually takes me about 30 minutes, and then I do 20 min of HIIT intervals on the treadmill. You could bike, swim, jump rope, whatever! I’m currently doing 60 sec work/90 rest for hit. You can do 30/60, 30/90, 60/60…whatever works for you. Just don’t rest so long that your heart isn’t working anymore before you work again.
A note on gear: Because I’m working out at home, I do all the cable exercises (like the antirotation press) with SPRI resistance bands. I can close them in my door, slide on handles, and go! They come in different resistance strengths, and they’re pretty cheap. I usually use the purple one.
I currently use 12.5-22.5 lbs dumbbells on delt day. My lat raises are weak and my rows are strong; I do most presses with 15 lbs. This is just a reference point, and you may want less or more. Keep in mind that I’ve been lifting for a couple of years. What’s important is choosing the right weight for you, focusing on proper form with those weights, releasing each lift slowly, and making sure you’re using enough weight that your muscles are failing in the last few reps. You should see great results!
If you have questions, comments or suggestions, let me know!