The Inverted Triangle Body Shape Workout


Like me, you have broad shoulders, small or medium-sized arms, small to medium breasts, and narrow hips, correct? You want to weight train or change your figure the best you can but you don't know how? Let's try to see if we can work on this together.

I'm an inverted triangle with thin arms, medium-size breasts, a waist that goes in ever so slightly and have narrow hips. Luckily, I have a derriere so I have some curves. Since my knees have been giving me trouble due to arthritis, I haven't been training my lower half as hard. I decided after receiving an email to join The Body For Life challenge, I would try to change my shape the best I could.

Granted, I don't think any amount of exercise will give me enough hips to equal my shoulders, however, I decided that I can give my body a more balanced look if I built muscle in my legs, hip, and glutes.

I know there are people like me out there who would love a more comprehensive program than just being told to do squats, lunges and do the elliptical trainer. So, I decided to put together a workout plan that will give you some hope to make some real body changes. I'm not promising that you will be an hourglass after doing this workout but you may feel better about yourself with a more balanced body.

The Inverted Triangle Body Shape Workout Plan:

  1. Train the lower body twice a week with *heavyweights
  2. Do 20-30 minutes of cardio, three days a week
  3. Train your upper body once or twice a week with lighter weights
  4. Eat a low carb or paleo diet if you are overweight
  5. If you are on the thin side, you will need to gain muscle mass
*You have to find your starting zone. Lifting light weights like 5 lbs, 10 lbs and etc will not get you what you desire, you probably will have to join a gym that has a variety of equipment, unless you have weight machines at home

We will build muscle on the lower body with low reps and heavy weights and train the upper body with light weights and 15-20 reps. Our diet will be lower in carbs because low carb diets help to reduce visceral fat, a type of fat within the abdominal cavity.   

Monday/Legs - Tuesday/Cardio - Wednesday/Upper Body -Thursday/Cardio - Friday/Leg day 2 - Saturday/Cardio and/or Upper Body - Sunday/Rest

The workout

Leg day workout: You will do 12 reps on your starting weight, wait one minute, add more weight do 10 reps, wait one minute, add weight do 8 reps, wait one minute, and you repeat this until you get to 6 reps. At six reps, you should be lifting your heaviest weight. Then you go back to your second or third weight at 12 reps repeat it and with another exercise of the same body part you will do 12 reps immediately Look at the example below:

Leg Press Machine
12 reps  75lbs/34kg  one-minute rest
10 reps  85lbs/39kg  one-minute rest
  8 reps  95lbs/43kg  one-minute rest
  6 reps  100lbs/45kg one-minute rest
12 reps  85lbs/39kg and then do 12 leg extensions immediately at a weight that is not too light or too heavy.
You will do this for each body part.  
Exercises for the quadriceps: Squats, seated leg extension, leg presses, hack squat, goblet squat, Bulgarian split squat
Exercises for the hamstrings: seated leg curl, lying leg curl, deadlift, lunges, hip thrusts, the bridge with feet on a chair/bench
Calves: seated calf raises, seated calf raises toes out, standing calf raises, standing calf raises toes out, standing calf raises toes in

Widen your hips exercises

On leg day two, you will be doing workouts to see if we can build the hip area. Most plans don't have this component but I know this is important to us. This plan will be just 4 sets of 10-12 reps with a minute rest between sets. After doing the above workout, you will then move on to the hip exercises.

1. Side lateral lunge 4 sets of 10 reps each side. Most people do not do this exercise correctly but you want to get it right because it really works the abductors or hip area. Look at the following video to get the form down correctly. I like to do a 2-second pause in the down position. I'm up to a 25-pound dumbbell when performing this exercise. Because of the knees, form and etc, it will be okay to start with a lighter weight when doing the side lateral lunge

2. Standing kickbacks with the cable machine or resistance tubes 4 sets of 10 reps

3. Standing leg or lying leg raises using the resistance band or ankle weights 4 sets of 12 reps

4a. Inner thigh with adduction machine drop sets do 4 reps at a heavy weight, drop the weight and do 4 more reps right away, then drop the weight and do four more reps with a total of 12 reps

4b. If you don't have access to the inner thigh machine, do any of these exercises instead, 4 sets of 12-15 reps.  Adductor exercises

5. Sumo squats 4-5 sets of 10 to 12 reps. Sumo squats

Upper Body Training

You can choose to train your upper body once a week and if you need exercise toning, you can train your upper body on your Saturday cardio day, it is up to you. 

It will be 3 sets of 15-20 reps on four body parts: Chest, Back, Arms(biceps and triceps). If you want to do shoulders, just do one or two sets of 12 reps. We need to keep them strong but no heavy weights for your shoulders.

You can also do bodyweight exercises like push-ups, pull-ups to work your upper body or you can use resistance bands to help you tone.

Chest exercises: push-ups, chest press, chest fly, incline chest press
Back exercises: pull-ups, lat pull-downs, back rows
Bicep exercises: bicep curls, hammer curls, preacher curls
Triceps exercises: dips, overhead triceps, triceps press down 

You can skip all that and do a video for toning the upper body. Take a look at the following videos to tone your upper body.

Tips to help build muscle mass

If your legs are thin and have small hips, you may need to build muscle mass. Here are some tips which you can use to help you build up your muscular mass. 

Tire your muscles

This is to reiterate what I said above. Set a daily goal to perform some extra set of exercises that make your muscles tired. Here "tired" means that condition when you feel you cannot repeat the exercise. You can start by carrying a heavyweight and then reducing the weight by 2 in each next shift or vice-a-versa. This is a great way to build muscle mass. It may feel impossible to do in the beginning, but once you are used to it, you can achieve your goal quickly. 

Pay more attention to body fat.

Measure your body fat before starting a workout routine. Do not be discouraged if you exercise with heavyweights and still observe only slight changes in your body weight. You may be burning fat and gaining more muscle mass. This is not simple simultaneously, but net loss or gain of weight is not a reliable indicator of fat or muscle movement.

Allow some time to rest. 

When it comes to the frequency of weight lift, more does not always benefit. It has not been demonstrated that training the same muscles every day or even twice a day produces more muscle gains, particularly in beginners. How fast you build up mass depends more on how quickly you recover. So there must be some time for the muscles to relax, and in this way, the muscle mass will build up in a healthy cycle!

Eat Protein

Eat enough protein. Even if you exercise hard, you only need less than 1 gram of protein per pound of your body's weight per day to develop your muscle. It won't make a huge difference. Whey, soy, or even skim milk is suitable if you want to use a supplementary drink to regulate muscle mass.

Final Verdict

We have discussed the essential and easiest tips which you can use to build up muscle mass quickly. However, before starting or planning anything, you must consult your physician and nutritionist. Once you get to know about your overall body health, feel free to discuss it with your fitness trainer, and do your best!

Low Carb Plan For Weight Loss

For inverted triangles who need to lose body fat especially around the belly, low carbohydrate plans seem to work the best for our shapesI have a low carb plan you can purchase. It allows you to have one free day or a free meal a week, The 6 Day Food Challenge. You can also follow the Atkins, South Beach, or Keto meal plans, you have to find what works best with you.

If you have any questions about the plan, shoot me an email at


  1. Good to know. Great ideas with a work our plan.

  2. What a great idea. I'm this shape, so I'm going to try this. Thanks for posting!

  3. Thank for suggestions 😊❤️

  4. Replies
    1. Did this workout work for you?

  5. Do you have this plan in a PDF that I can take with me to the gym?

  6. Which exercise I should not do? I like chin ups, push ups and single arm row . Should I stop them?


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