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Cathe Live Review: Smokin’ Upper Body (#111)

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Cathe Live Review: Smokin’ Upper Body (#111)


Smokin’ Upper Body is a tough and intense, cardio and strength workout focused on the upper body. This class is pretty packed with people as it was filmed just before the 2016 Glassboro Roadtrip.


There is also a lower body version of this routine on Live, Smokin’ Lower Body #128, which is also an excellent and challenging workout. This one though is slightly different in that it also includes cardio intervals, which the lower body one does not. It is always nice to have another cardio and upper body workout, as they seem to be rather rare for Cathe.


The workout is structured into groups of one cardio interval with usually two strength moves, which are supersets and repeated three times, before moving onto the next group. This is a fast paced workout with little rest between with groups of exercises and practically no rest between sets of exercises. So it is definitely a challenge and you will be feeling the work.


The cardio intervals are all straight forward, high impact moves and most are done for 16 reps and then repeated. However, some are done for longer and some shorter, with the shorter ones done for three sets rather than two. These all get the heart rate up nicely and it stayed elevated throughout the whole routine.


The strength work is also fairly fast paced and even though you are using lighter dumbbells it adds up with the multiple sets. Cathe used 10 pounds for every weighted exercise, except 1 arm row where she doubled up the dumbbells. I did increase on a few of the exercises, later in the routine, and these are noted below. Many of the exercises also use a resistance band, instead of the dumbbells, and Cathe shows also modifications for if you have a heavier strength band. The band work was in some cases was very high rep and my shoulders were burning badly on the narrow grip band pulls - as there were literally over a hundred reps sometimes and there are three sets! Also Cathe transitions from one move to the next so fast that I sometimes had to pause and rewind so I could get my band in the right position.


Overall, this is an excellent and challenging, upper body focused cardio and strength workout that will nicely burn out those muscles and get that heart pumping.


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


The Workout


Smokin’ Upper Body is a cardio and strength circuit workout. The workout consists of groups of one cardio and two strength moves, which are repeated for three sets. Cathe used 10 pound dumbbells, medium tension resistance tubing (and a heavier tension to demonstrate modifications) and a mat for this routine. (I used a resistance band instead of tubing).


What You Need to Know

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


The Moves


Smokin’ Upper Body is 53 minutes long and originally aired on 28thJuly 2016 (#111). The workout starts with a 5:30 minute warm-up, before moving into the first cardio interval. Cardio moves shown in bold italics below. You will need to ensure that your equipment is handy, as you will be moving very quickly from one thing to the next.


  • Snowboards – 2 sets of 16 reps

  • 8 Overhead press / 8 rear delt flys – two 10# Dbs – 3 sets

  • Ice breakers – 2 sets of 16 reps

  • 8 Bicep curls / 8 upright rows – two 10# Dbs – 3 sets

  • Squat jump forward / back & quarter turn jump – 2 sets of 6 reps

  • Overhead tricep extensions – two 10# Dbs – 16 reps

  • Tricep kickbacks – resistance tubing - 8 reps & 1x 15 pulses

  • Overhead tricep extensions – two 10# Dbs – 12 reps

  • Tricep kickbacks – resistance tubing - 8 reps & 1x 7 pulses

  • Overhead tricep extensions – two 10# Dbs – 8 reps

  • Tricep kickbacks – resistance tubing - 4 reps & 1x 7 pulses

  • Line taps – 2 sets of 32 reps

  • Shoulder circles – resistance tubing – 28 reps

  • Narrow grip band pulls – resistance tubing – 96 reps

  • Shoulder circles – resistance tubing – 28 reps

  • Narrow grip band pulls – resistance tubing – 100 reps

  • Shoulder circles – resistance tubing – 24 reps

  • Narrow grip band pulls – resistance tubing – 70 reps

  • Squat digs – 2 sets of 32 reps

  • 8 Push-ups – mat – 4 sets

  • Football runs (touching floor w/ fingertips at either end) – mat – 2 sets of 20 reps

  • 3 Hammer curls, 1 curl press & 3 overhead press – two 10# Dbs – 7 sets

  • Lateral skates – mat – 48 reps & 32 reps

  • 1 Plie squat & upright row & 1 plie squat & overhead snatch – two 10# Dbs (I used 12’s) – 2x 1 arm & 12x both arms

  • Posture pulls – resistance tubing - 12 reps

  • 1 Plie squat & upright row & 1 plie squat & overhead snatch – two 10# Dbs (I used 12’s) – 8x both arms

  • Posture pulls – resistance tubing - 7 reps

  • 1 Plie squat & upright row & 1 plie squat & overhead snatch – two 10# Dbs (I used 12’s) – 8x both arms

  • Posture pulls – resistance tubing - 8 reps

  • High reaching pop squats – mat - 3 sets of 10 reps

  • Front raise / side lateral raise – resistance tubing– 2 sets (4x 1 arm front, 4x 1 arm side) & 2 sets (4x both front, 4x side both)

  • Shuffle, shuffle, drop – 2 sets of 16 reps

  • 1 Arm row – Cathe used two 10# Dbs in one hand (I used 1x 20) – 16 reps each side

  • Front swing & 1 arm lat pull down – one 10# Db (I used 1x 12) – 8 reps

  • 1 Arm row – Cathe used two 10# Dbs in one hand (I used 1x 20) – 10 reps each side

  • Front swing & 1 arm lat pull down – one 10# Db (I used 1x 12) – 8 reps

  • 1 Arm row – Cathe used two 10# Dbs in one hand (I used 1x 20) – 8 reps each side

  • Front swing & 1 arm lat pull down – one 10# Db (I used 1x 12) – 8 reps

  • Jump shot & 6 knee repeater – mat – 6 sets & 7 sets

  • Descent push-ups (lower to count of 4, push back to child’s pose then back to high plank) – mat – 6 reps

  • Side lying 1 arm tricep push-ups – mat - 12 reps each side

  • Descent push-ups (lower to count of 4, push back to child’s pose then back to high plank) – mat – 6 reps

  • Side lying 1 arm tricep push-ups – mat - 10 reps each side

  • Descent push-ups (lower to count of 4, push back to child’s pose then back to high plank) – mat – 4reps

  • Side lying 1 arm tricep push-ups – mat - 8 reps each side


The workout ends with a 2 minute cool down and stretch.


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 liked this workout, check out my review of Cathe Live: Upper Body Circuit w Hiit (#216) – HERE.


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