Food & Fitness Friday: Tricep Dips

Food & Fitness,

They share my heart... most people don’t realize that I started cooking under the cottage law for my personal training clients and my cooking actually grew quickly into a business all of itself... after playing 2 sports in college and enjoying staying in shape after being so active in college I decided personal training was the perfect fit for my active lifestyle. I started training at Anatomies in Hattiesburg Mississippi in 2005 (wow that means I’ve been training clients for almost 15 years) after being on Masterchef and then opening my first restaurant I found very little time to be able to train myself much less have the time needed to be dedicated to my clients. This put me between a rock and a hard place... I knew that the Birdhouse Cafe needed my 💯 attention and that’s exactly where I put my everything. I decided to take a break from training and teaching my classes. I taught small group classes, pure barre, trx and my most favorite one on one training. Now looking back over the past year and half I’ve realized I had a huge void for sharing sharing my love for fitness with others! I feel like Food & Fitness Fridays will give me the chance to share both of my loves with each of you....

I’m starting fitness and food Friday with one of my favorite exercises targeting the tricep. I love to do 4 timed sets of this exercise. That means set your timer and do 4 rounds of 45 seconds of Tri dips with a 1 minute active break(that means 1 minute of your choice between jumping jacks, jump squats , or body squats) I would start with doing this exercise twice a week!

Dips are intense and effective isolation exercises that help develop powerful and defined triceps. They can be performed on a at home on a step; using your body weight as resistance.

Dips are a compound push exercise with a small range of motion that primarily works your triceps but also engages your forearms, shoulders, chest and lower back. These muscle groups are engaged from the moment you position yourself on the steps, as the muscles are needed to help stabilize and balance yourself. As you lower and raise your body, the muscles provide resistance to the gravitational pull on your body. The lack of momentum during the dip movement keeps the muscles contracted throughout, making it one of the most effective triceps exercises.

To do a dip, position yourself on a step or ledge with arms locked  and bend at the knees. Try to avoid leaning forward with your upper body. Begin by slowly lowering yourself while inhaling, until your arms form a 90-degree angle. Squeeze your triceps and shoulders to propel yourself upward and back to the starting position while exhaling. At the top of the movement, contract your arm, shoulder and chest muscles as hard as you can, hold for one count, then repeat.

The edge of a step or or any low-lying and stable platform will work. Keep your legs in front of you and grasp the edge of the platform with your hands just below your hips. Slightly move your body forward to clear the edge and execute the dip movement. 

Triceps dips are performed by using one or two weight benches or any surfaces of equal height. Beginners can keep their feet on the floor, but as you get stronger, placing your legs across an equal height surface will make the exercise more challenging. Start by placing your hands behind you onto a bench so that your fingers face forward. Place your heels on another bench or on the floor. Raise yourself up so that your arms are straight and this is the starting position. Then lower yourself until your arms are at a 90-degree angle before returning to the starting position to complete one repetition.

I hope y’all have a great weekend full of dips and other adventures or trips :) see y’all next week!

- the little chef with the big heart

Kathleen A Dearman