Work It Out at the Gun Show

Did you get your tickets?


Yes, I’m that predictable…

As I collected my things from the security scanner at the airport last Friday, I got a fun compliment from the TSA agent.  I was wearing a sleeveless dress and before I could put my cardigan back on the agent commented on  my guns.  I crack myself up.

In honor of that TSA man, today’s Work It Out is all about the gun show.  Anyone can have defined arms!  Biceps are especially fun to work because they are really responsive to training.  You just have to be consistent and use the proper form to ensure you are reaping all of the benefits from the time you spend in the gym.



Today’s gun show workout is demonstrated by Abdul, a trainer at my gym, House of Payne.  Abdul is a heavyweight competitor; his bicep is bigger than my thigh.  He was also my roommate at the competition I did in November, where he took first place in his class!  Side note: he likes hack squats, which makes him insane.


Today he’s walking us through 3 bicep moves, taking extra care to explain proper form.

  1. Preacher Curls – Many people complain that these hurt their elbows and wrists; I follow the form Abdul explains and no longer have an issue.  These are great for isolating the bicep muscle, as well as developing adjacent ligaments and tendons.
  2. Lying Bicep Curls – This is one you don’t see many people doing, but it is very effective as it forces you to use your arms since your back muscles can do none of the lifting when you are flat on the floor.
  3. Incline Dumbbell Curls – Performing curls on an incline bench helps you to achieve a greater range of motion, stretching out the long head of the biceps.  Why do you care?  Because the long head gives your arms better shape when viewed from the side and it forms the biceps peak that pops when you to flex.


Check out the video below for a video explanation of each move:



I do 4 sets of these at 10-12 reps.  These are just 3 moves, but they are some of the most effective ones you can do.  I credit these with helping me hit a new PR Sunday!

Typically I do biceps in combination with a chest workout.  Find what works best for you!  Some of you runners may want to do biceps alone after logging those miles.


How is everyone doing with the Kitchen Workout?  This time of year it’s all too easy to get carried away, but I have been trying to keep top-of-mind how much better I feel when I fuel my body properly.  These are guidelines that work for me.  Sit down and think about what makes sense for your lifestyle and your goals to come up with a list of your own!

Have you joined the Kitchen Workout?


Last week I did really well, despite some travel.  Weekends continue to be my downfall.  saturday night I could have done a little better than I did… but the next day I hit a new bicep curl PR.  Maybe my body just needed those extra carbs!

As always, feel free to post/pin/tweet the #KitchenWorkout graphic and show your clean eating pride!  Check out this post for tips and recipes!


Yesterday I talked about some things I want to do to make the blog more interactive…  that goes for the #workitout too!  My trainer has offered to take requests for videos!  So…

What types of workouts would you like to see more of, or get explanations for?

What is your favorite “vanity” muscle?  I’m all about the gun show.  In case you couldn’t tell. 😉



  1. says

    Lol. I’m rolling over in laughter. Apparently we have the same sense of humor because I thought the whole gun show/TSA thing was hilarious! 😀 Great workout! I’m totally with you on the fun-ness of training the biceps because they’re so responsive. I can train my legs and tush all day and still not get the definition and tone I can get on my biceps. Speaking of legs, I’d love to see some killer leg workouts! :)

  2. says

    Haha I love your gun story! My husband is super jealous of how well my biceps respond to training. I do direct isolation work on them just once a month, and he devotes a whole day to his, and mine are still better 😉 Haha! My favourite vanity body part is my butt. Is that a vanity body part?? I get a lot of compliments on it – it’s my greatest asset 😉

  3. says

    I think I go through airport security too much to have the guns that you have. I’d simply get in too much trouble… :). Love that the TSA guy said that! Hilarious!

    I’m doing good on my version of the kitchen workout! I’ve even lost some post-marathon pounds (that I needed) and I’m back to strength training again! Geeks awesome!

  4. says

    I need to try these. I am not a fan of my arms. You and I need to workout together some time still. Weren’t we going to do that before the Lawrence like 4 months ago?

  5. says

    Ha! TSA joking about guns…gotta love it. Just remember that you shouldn’t joke about that or they will be tackling you lol….sounds like your arms are looking good 😉

  6. says

    I know I always say that I eat really clean most of the time. I mean, I am super good about listening to my body and just not eating things that aren’t ‘worth it’ when it comes to sweets, and really enjoying/craving whole, nutritious foods.

    But for the past two to three days I have been dealing with raging chocolate and sugar cravings that hit me and cause me to do things like scrape out the filling from a piece of pumpkin pie that had been left in the teacher’s lounge fridge, or pick out all of the brownie crumbles from the pan (also in the teachers lounge) instead of eating a whole brownie. I think the lesson is “stay out of the teacher’s lounge.”

    • Laura says

      Girlllll… I wouldn’t stand a chance in the teacher’s lounge. I know because I used to sneak in to nab treats in high school. Shhhhh…

  7. says

    It always feels good to get a random compliment when you’ve been working so hard! I’m a sucker for working the triceps. I think they are sexy wit they are toned. I like working my hamstrings too. I think most people focus on the front of the body because it’s what you can see, so I am a sucker for anything that works the back of the body.

    • Laura says

      Good call about the back – that point was driven home watching the bums in my first competition. Saggy butts = no bueno.

  8. says

    I need to stop being such a germ-a-phobe and actually try lying bicep curls. But yuuuck, the floor at my gym. And equally yuck=the mats at my gym. Picky, picky. Enjoyment of hack squats is definitely a sign of insanity…I’m still having nightmares.

  9. says

    Baha, I laughed at your pun. I love getting random compliments. I always get them on my shoulders (mostly) and triceps following, this makes sense since they’re my favorite to train and yep, biceps not my fave at alll. Which means I need to work them more;)

  10. says

    You are a smart chick – do you know how many people tell me I’m crazy when I say bicep work is important strength training for runners?! 😉 I love bicep workouts and I’m really curious to try the lying bicep curls now. That makes complete sense!

    • Laura says

      Thanks! It’s funny how many people think jut having strong legs is enough for peak performance. Let me know if you try out those lying curls!

  11. says

    Hi Laura,
    I recently found your blog when another blogger I follow linked to one of your recipes. I love it, and can’t wait to read more! Also, I did try the linked recipe. It was for a low-fat peanut almond butter. Ah-mazing! It had so much more flavor than any other “low fat” version I’ve tried before. So, thank you! :)

    • Laura says

      Thank you so much for stopping by and commenting! I’m flattered that you liked the recipe… which remind me… I need to make more! :)

  12. says

    I have always loved preacher curls.

    the last several years I have had some pretty intense wrist tendinitis / tendonitis, so my arms don’t get the workout they used to, and I miss it. my arms miss it.

    my legs have always been my vanity – I was once told they are better than Tina Turners. 😀

  13. says

    La-HUV this! The video (ADD moment of the day: my GOD his arms are bigger than my waist!) is awesome! I’m totally working those lying bicep curls into my next workout…and I may give incline curls another shot…I’m thinking I might have been trying to go too heavy in the past like I was before you gave me the tips with the preacher curls. I am really loving your work-it-out series, girl! I’ve gotten so many new ideas and I love learning more about form. I’d love to see something on the calves soon (my vanity muscle). I swear I can do calf raises all damn day and I hardly ever get sore…I want to complain every time I get up out of my chair! Hmm, masochistic much? 😉

    • Laura says

      Maybe next time you come see me (hint, hint) you can come workout at my gym and meet him. His arms are bigger than 2x your waist.

      I’m sO glad you are fining the series helpful! I’ll make note of the calves!

  14. says

    I would slap that TSA agent for sexual harassment then I would kiss him on the cheek 😉 I’m trying to eat clean most of the time since there are so many parties and drinks to be had this time of year. Even at parties I stick to the veggies and antipasti’s. I just feel better in the morning!

  15. says

    LOVE biceps & love those moves as you know! I love using both sides of the preacher curl bench – sitting using the rounded side & the standing one using the flat side…..

    Incline curls have really helped my biceps too!!! :)


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