Exercise, Lifestyle

Full Arm & Ab Workout, Life Updates & My Concussion

If you follow me on Instagram (on either my blog Instagram account or my personal one), you may already know that last week was a bit of a rough one. Last weekend started out with a family wedding and ended in the Emergency Room with a CAT Scan. Today, I’ve got some quick life updates along with a killer bicep and core workout for your next Arm Day.

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This weekend was quite the adventure and time for head injuries on a trip to GA for a family wedding! • Before the wedding on Saturday, my brother cracked the back of his head open when he stood up and hit a shelf and just managed to avoid getting stitches. • On Sunday morning after the wedding, I had a serious fall in the hotel room. It appears to have been triggered by orthostatic hypotension and I hit my head against and wall and a bedside table and lost consciousness during the incident. I woke up and felt better after resting for a bit and went on with the day as usual. • We traveled home and I continued to feel poorly off and on again the rest of the day. Jeremy decided to take me to the ER last night, where we learned I'd sustained a minor concussion during the fall. My blood work, EKG and CT came back clear, so that was great news! • I'm feeling very tired today but somewhat improved since yesterday. Definitely going to be taking it easy this week! And I think we will be taking a short break from any more unexpectedly exciting family adventures. 😂 (At least until Christmas.)

A post shared by Reese Woods (@reesewoodss) on

Last Sunday, after a bad fall (detailed in the above post) and a late-night trip to the ER, we discovered two things: That I had sustained a minor concussion and that I appear to have a low-blood-pressure condition called orthostatic hypotension.

Since high school, I’ve noticed in the mornings that if I hop out of bed too quickly, I can become dizzy, see spots and need to sit down for a moment to feel normal again. My parents took me to the doctor for it as a teenager after one busy morning I jumped out of bed to get ready for the day and became so dizzy that I had to sit down on the floor to narrowly avoid passing out. At the time, the doctor didn’t have any kind of answer for me other than “well, if you don’t feel good when that happens, just don’t get up too quickly in the morning anymore.” 🙄 So this time around talking to another doctor, I was glad to get better clarity on why that happens. (Although the recommendation still stands for me not to get out of bed too quickly. 😂)

I took it easy last week with a couple days off work and no working out Monday-Friday. By the weekend, my fatigue was wearing off and I was feeling much improved from those first few days. I had doctor approval to gradually ease back into my exercise and gym routine based on how I was feeling and responding to normal activities. On Saturday, I decided to give the gym a try, and it went well! I performed a low-impact seated bicep workout and did some floor core work.

This week on my blog Instagram, I shared my full bicep and core workout from the weekend, along with some tips on how I’ve managed to maintain a regular exercise routine in spite of past injuries. So check out my post below!

Seated Bicep Workout:

7 Rounds, 15 Reps for each movement 

  • Hammer curls
  • Angled out bicep curls
  • Incline hammer curls
  • Incline bicep curls

Core Work:

Abs: 100 reps for each movement (modify the leg lifts by bending the knees).

Scroll through the videos below for demonstrations on each movement.

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Arms & abs! I like to pair these two muscle groups together some weeks, especially when I'm isolating bicep and tricep workouts to help stimulate some 💪growth. Remember to save this post for when you're in the gym! • Arms: 7×15 for each movement. *Seated hammer curls *Angled out bicep curls *Incline hammer curls *Incline bicep curls • Abs: 100 reps for each movement (modify the leg lifts by bending the knees). • If you watch my IG stories, you'll know I've been easing back into the gym slowly after sustaining a minor concussion last weekend. I have doctor approval to begin exercising again based on how I'm feeling. • I took some time off work for a couple days following the accident & didn't workout Monday-Friday. Saturday I decided to see how it felt getting back into the gym. I kept all of my activity low-weight, seated or laying down & without pressing weight overhead. • I felt like it went very well! I kept everything low-impact but still very challenging (those incline curls will get'cha!). • For the last 4 years, I seem to experience some kind of injury in November. Last year it was a broken toe, the year before that I nearly tore a ligament in my ankle & was on crutches, the year before that I had a severe back injury. • But I don't use injuries as an excuse to give up or slack off on my goals. So long as it's within doctor approval & doesn't cause further pain or injury, there's almost always a way to continue safely working out with the proper modifications. • I've seen people use similar injuries to ones I've sustained to completely give up on their fitness goals then blame the injury as the reason they gained 15-25lbs. • When I was on crutches, I gave my ankle the rest & recovery it needed in the 6 months it took to fully heal. But I didn't check out on any & all exercise for 6 months. Just because I couldn't do certains kinds of activity didn't mean I couldn't do ANY kind of activity. I performed seated upperbody workouts & laid on the floor to do bodyweight leg exercises. • If you're struggling with an injury, talk to your doctor & then a qualified personal trainer to see how you can safely keep going after those goals. 💪

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All writing and video content copyright © 2018 Rachel Elise Weems Woods

42 thoughts on “Full Arm & Ab Workout, Life Updates & My Concussion”

  1. Both of my children have sustained concussions in the past. It’s never fun. Glad to hear you’re feeling better and also that you got diagnosed. My daughter often feels dizzy and loses vision when she gets up suddenly, so I might mention it to her.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. My mom actually had a far more severe one earlier this year, and it is not fun at all! Fortunately, my fall was not as serious as her fall and head injury, but we knew some of the warning signs of a concussion from her experience!

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    1. I forgot to mention it in my Instagram post, but there were actually three people including myself and my brother who experienced head injuries. The night before the wedding, the mother of the groom had a bad fall, hit her head and had a black eye at the wedding the next day! They say bad things come in sets of three sometimes, so hopefully, that’s all!

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  2. So sorry to hear about your fall but thank goodness you’re back at it now! I hope everything continues to go great especially now that you have a diagnosis.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Oh no! I’m sorry about your concussion. I hope you are feeling better, and that the concussion will heal soon! You are very ambitious about exercising and I admire your drive and passion to get out there and do some exercise, even though you may be injured!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! I work in gyms, so physical activity is a big part of the job! So long as I can continue to exercise safely with doctor approval, I like to jump back into it!

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  4. Rough news about your fall and your brother! What a weekend! I have found that some mornings I wake up visibly shaking and I figured it was a sugar thing. Maybe a better workout routine is what I need.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I would definitely say to consult with your doctor on the shaking (it’s better to be safe than sorry!). But a consistent workout routine will do wonders for many conditions!

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