There are two main tricks to building triceps, and they’re at the core of any muscle-building regimen.

First, you need to plan to eat a calorie surplus — more calories in than out.

This will help your body have enough calories and nutrients to maximize the benefits of your workout and promote muscle growth.

Your diet should have around 50 to 60 grams of protein in a day, and a healthy balance of other vitamins and macro-nutrients.

1. Triceps Lift

  • Grab a dumbbell with your right hand and stand in a split stance with your left foot forward.

  • Bend left knee and lower torso until parallel to the ground. Keep back leg straight and shoulders facing forward.

  • Lift right arm to shoulder height, pointing the weight up to the ceiling.

  • Pulse right arm one inch up and down, keeping the arm as straight as possible.


Do 25 pulses, then switch sides

2. Triceps Pushup

  • Place hands directly below shoulders, feet hip-width apart.

  • Keeping elbows pointed back and as close to your sides as possible, slowly lower body to the ground.

  • Once your chest touches the floor, press back up to a straight-arm plank. (Up next: Triceps Dips Are the Upper-Body Move You Should Master ASAP)


Triceps Workout with Weights Tip: Be sure to keep core and legs engaged the entire time. If this is too challenging, modify by dropping down to your knees. (P.S., here's how to progress to a full push-up as a beginner.)

Do 10 reps


3. Triceps Extension

  • Hold one dumbbell with both hands overhead.

  • Draw shoulders down and back and engage the core.

  • Keeping elbows pointed forward, bend elbows and allow the weight to lower down back.

  • Extend arms to bring the weight back overhead.


Triceps Workout with Weights Tip: Keep core and glutes engaged the entire time.


Do 20 reps

4. Side Plank with Dumbbell Raise

  • Grab a dumbbell with your left hand and come into a side plank with your right elbow directly below the shoulder, feet stacked.

  • Raise hips off the ground so that your body forms a straight line from ankles to shoulders.

  • Keeping hips lifted and chest raised, extend the left arm straight out directly above the shoulder, still holding the dumbbell.

  • Lower left arm back down until it's parallel to the ground.


Do 10 reps per side

5. Triceps Lateral Lift

  • Grab a dumbbell with your right hand and stand in a split stance with your left foot forward.

  • Bend left knee and lower torso until parallel to the ground. Keep back leg straight and shoulders squared to the front.

  • Lift right arm behind body up to shoulder height, palm facing the floor. Squeeze the entire arm toward the body.

  • Continue this small movement in and out.


Do 25 reps per side

6. 60-Second Cardio Blast

Pick your poison: Do jumping jacks, jump rope, or burpees as fast as possible for one minute.

FYI: Adding cardio intervals to this triceps workout with weights gets your heart rate pumping, which can help you burn more calories and is one method for how to lose arm fat.


- Make sure not to flare out your elbows because your pecs will become much more involved than needed. In other words, they’ll take all the strain instead of your triceps. That's why you should always press your elbows in when you lift or lower the weights.

- Don't position your hands too close to each other while doing, let's say, close-grip bench presses. There's a reason why this exercise is called the "close-grip" press, but many lifters take it to the extreme. Besides being ineffective, a grip that’s too close can lead to serious injuries. You can lose stability while balancing a heavyweight, and there's probably no need to say how dangerous it is. Also, it can lead to tendon strain, as well as wrist and elbow bruises.

- It's a bad idea to begin your triceps workout with isolated exercises. Just like with training any other part of your body, you need to warm-up first. Warm your elbow joints with several sets of press downs and then move to single-joint exercises.

- Neglect neither overhead exercises nor underhand moves. Speaking about the first group, the only way to stretch the long part of the triceps is to do exercises where your arms are positioned overhead.