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Cathe Live Review: Pumped Upper Body (#185)

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Cathe Live: Pumped Upper Body

Cathe Live Review: Pumped Upper Body (#185)

Pumped Upper Body is another excellent pure strength workout focusing on the upper body and core. The routine utilises sets of different upper body exercises and repeats them twice before moving onto the next grouping. With the right weights you will definitely be feeling this one!

The upper body exercises are all traditional moves and are generally not too high rep, except for the lateral raises at the end. You are generally doing 8 – 16 reps. You move quickly from exercise to exercise, with little rest in between, so this keeps the heart rate up, a little more, and compounds the upper body work nicely. However, the actual reps are generally not too fast paced so you could go a little heavier here, if you wanted to. I did increase my weights on a few exercises and probably could do so a little more in the future. Even though there is quite a lot of repetition, I found the workout flew by. I think this is because you are so focused on working through the exercises that you don’t really have time to think about how much more you have left to do!

The exercises target all of the different upper body muscle groups, combining moves for different body parts into each set. Be prepared to work hard from the outset, as I found the first grouping pretty tough, particularly the upright rows.

The workout ends with a tough core section on the step. The core work is a giant set of different bodyweight exercises. You complete the first set of all exercises and then run through them quickly one more time (with less reps) and no breaks in between. I was definitely feeling this by the end of the second set.

Overall, this is a pretty tough upper body and core workout that works all of the muscle groups effectively and one you will probably still be feeling the next day!

(For more information about Cathe Live, how to sign up & to see all of my Cathe Live reviews, click HERE).

The Workout

Pumped Upper Body is a pure strength upper body and core workout. The routine consists of groupings of exercises for the upper body, which are usually then repeated two more times, and ends with a giant set of core exercises that are repeated once.

What You Need to Know

What you need to know: Instructor: Cathe Friedrich. Length: 52 mins. Equipment needed: 5 – 15# dumbbells (I also used 20’s), a full size step with two risers each side & a mat. Optional: Lifting Gloves. Fun Factor: 3/5. Sweat Factor: 3/5. Coordination: 1/5

(Rating scale – 1= lowest & 5 = highest).

The Moves

Pumped Upper Body is 52 minutes long and originally aired on 15th February 2018 (#185). The workout starts with a 4 minute warm-up. Cathe and class are holding 5# dumbbells, when the class starts, so you will need to be holding them already. The step, with two risers each side, is set up horizontally in front of you and is only used as a weight bench.

Biceps & Shoulders

  • Sweeper curls – two 15# dumbbells – 10 reps (1st & 2nd sets), 8 reps (3rd set)

  • Upright rows (these are reasonably fast) – two 12# dumbbells – 16 reps (1st set), 12 reps (2nd set), 8 reps (3rd set)

Repeat above two more times

  • W curls – two 12# dumbbells – 8 reps (2/2 count)

  • Front raises – one 12# dumbbell – 12 reps

Repeat above two more times

  • Isolation curls – two 10# dumbbells (I should have used 12’s) – 5 reps

  • Bicep curls – two 10# dumbbells (I should have used 12’s) – 4 reps

Isolation Curls

Triceps & Back

  • Tricep dips – step – 32 reps

  • Narrow grip bench press – two 15# dumbbells & step – 16x single arms / 8x both arms (1st set), 8x single / 8x both / 4x single / 4x both (2nd set), 8x single / 8x both (3rd set)

  • Rear delt flys – two 10# dumbbells – 2 sets - 10 reps & 8 reps

  • Pullovers – two 15# dumbbells & step – 8 reps (4/4 count)

Repeat above two more times


Chest, Shoulders & Triceps

  • Incline press-ups – step – 6 sets of 2/2 count push-up & alternating foot taps to shoulder (1st set), 2 sets of 8 reps (2nd set), 8 reps of 3/1 & 1/3 count (3rd set)

  • Chest flys (with knees elevated) – two 15# dumbbells & step (I used 20’s) – 8 reps

  • Seated overhead press – two 10# dumbbells & step (I used 12’s) – 12 reps

  • Lying tricep extensions – two 10# dumbbells & step (I used 12’s except for last set where I used 10’s) – 4 singles & 4 partial reps (1st & 2nd set), 6 partial reps (3rd set)

Repeat above two more times

Lying Tricep Extensions

Back & Shoulders

  • 1 arm row – one 10 & 12# dumbbells (I used 1x20) – 16 reps each side

  • Lateral raises – two 5# dumbbells – 8 sets of 4 reps (alternating arms to side of thighs & just in front of thighs)

Repeat above two more times

Water break and quick stretch

Core – move to the mat / step (Cathe does all of the core exercises on step – I did them on the floor)

  • Bike manoeuvre (tempo & then slower)

  • Reverse crunches

  • Leg thrusters

  • L position crunches

  • Leg chasers

Quickly repeat above moves with less reps and no breaks in between exercises

L Position Crunches

The workout ends with a brief 1:30 minute stretch as you already stretched the upper body earlier.

Take Action

Try it today! Find out more about how to subscribe and to check out all of my Cathe Live Reviews - click HERE.

If you enjoyed this workout, check out my review of Cathe Live: Toasted Trisets Upper Body - HERE.

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