8

votes

Strength training with no equipment

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created January 23, 2012 at 1:24 PM

Any ideas for strength training without weights, resistance bands, etc?

What I have in mind:

  • Push ups and variations
  • Plank
  • Dips
  • Sort-of "pull ups" on wardobe
  • Squats with backpack
  • Lunges with backpack

Am I missing any other ideas?

59ee717de524f921efb7f2984157339f

(871)

on March 30, 2012
at 08:11 PM

Lisa is english, not Aussie ;) sorry. big difference. lol

Bdf98e5a57befa6f0877f978ba09871c

on January 27, 2012
at 04:09 AM

I just bought the ebook, because of travel to a very hilly area in a few months. This looks solidly good, especially to make some real progress without anything complicated.

Ef9f83cb4e1826261a44c173f733789e

(13635)

on January 24, 2012
at 04:42 PM

I'm not sure about solely. Bruce Lee used isometrics.

8c8e71eb729c0edb4786c6f3ba8614e4

(568)

on January 24, 2012
at 11:41 AM

I'm already at a stage where I can do about 10-15 pushups and 2-4 pullups at a time if I push myself. If I were to mainly focus on those for strengt training, would that be enough?

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on January 23, 2012
at 10:34 PM

Yep. If you are doing pushups, you need to be doing inverted rows.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on January 23, 2012
at 10:27 PM

My issue is that when I do it on my left side, my form is perfect, for some reason, I really struggle with form on my right side, and it still feels awkward.

Ce7e28769d92d5de5533e775b1de966e

on January 23, 2012
at 10:03 PM

Still trying to get my Turkish Getup down, I'm always so worried that I'll drop the bar or KB on my head that I start giggling out of stress and have to roll over. ARR!

Da681d976130df15aac3984013aaad6d

(720)

on January 23, 2012
at 08:44 PM

This used to be a great site with the old host (they recently split), now she has a new youtube page...look up "zuzka Light" there are also old body weight routines on bodyrock.tv with Zuzana...just go to archives and skip the British chick...she pales in comparison.

8c8e71eb729c0edb4786c6f3ba8614e4

(568)

on January 23, 2012
at 07:43 PM

I already do this, but I don't think I can carry more than 4 shopping bags + a completely full backpack, there is just no more space on me to hold on to more!

8c8e71eb729c0edb4786c6f3ba8614e4

(568)

on January 23, 2012
at 07:41 PM

I can do about 2-4 pullups at a time (depending on day and energy levels), should I still be looking into inverted rows?

E36cb992cf0a5eba8b97a359c15f38b3

(4347)

on January 23, 2012
at 07:01 PM

Yeah--I'm rapidly coming to the end of my gym membership, and am probably going to be moving towards bodyweight stuff to save money. (It helps that we have a great playground near us with tall structures to climb/do pull-ups on while the kids do their thing.) Nerd Fitness is a great resource.

Bf57bcbdc19d4f1728599053acd020ab

(5043)

on January 23, 2012
at 06:18 PM

nice. I might just try that.

Bf57bcbdc19d4f1728599053acd020ab

(5043)

on January 23, 2012
at 05:48 PM

another +1 for inverted rows! Maybe some day I will be able to do a pull up...

Bf57bcbdc19d4f1728599053acd020ab

(5043)

on January 23, 2012
at 05:46 PM

another +1 for inverted rows particularly the part where he says this is the exercise to do to get yourself ready to do a pull up. Yeah!

Bf57bcbdc19d4f1728599053acd020ab

(5043)

on January 23, 2012
at 05:43 PM

how short a period? Maybe it depends on how much of a wimp you were to begin with? I'm still working on doing real pushups and it's been a few months... sigh.

0dbd7154d909b97fe774d1655754f195

(16131)

on January 23, 2012
at 05:16 PM

I agree. I have this book on Kindle. My only tip: Don't buy such a book on Kindle. Much better to have a book to flip through especially when reading about exercise.

667f6c030b0245d71d8ef50c72b097dc

(15976)

on January 23, 2012
at 03:39 PM

though most bodyweight exercise won't build too much muscle after a relatively short initial period, pull-ups are the one exception. Diligent work on pull-ups can really sculpt a back (shoulders, lats, etc). Pull-ups are the hands-down best bodyweight, at-home workout! They're only less popular nowadays CUZ THEYRE HARD! and cuz once one becomes overweight they are the first ability one loses.

E48146ad243fab742e69d10b633e05d6

(165)

on January 23, 2012
at 03:05 PM

Lol, agreed, the workouts are good though.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on January 23, 2012
at 02:09 PM

Ugh. Overly perky Australian accent. Your link should come with a warning sticker, not for viewing by non-morning people before noon... +1 though, for providing a good resource...

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on January 23, 2012
at 02:02 PM

Carl, do you have any photos or examples of folks in really good shape and who also look good using solely isometrics?

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on January 23, 2012
at 02:01 PM

+1 for the inverted rows! Build a back like a gorilla...

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14 Answers

5
E36cb992cf0a5eba8b97a359c15f38b3

on January 23, 2012
at 01:37 PM

Are you familiar with Nerd Fitness? Steve Kamb has a ton of body weight stuff on his site: http://nerdfitness.com/blog/top-posts/

Bf57bcbdc19d4f1728599053acd020ab

(5043)

on January 23, 2012
at 06:18 PM

nice. I might just try that.

E36cb992cf0a5eba8b97a359c15f38b3

(4347)

on January 23, 2012
at 07:01 PM

Yeah--I'm rapidly coming to the end of my gym membership, and am probably going to be moving towards bodyweight stuff to save money. (It helps that we have a great playground near us with tall structures to climb/do pull-ups on while the kids do their thing.) Nerd Fitness is a great resource.

3
1a98a40ba8ffdc5aa28d1324d01c6c9f

(20378)

on January 23, 2012
at 03:49 PM

You Are Your Own Gym is a great resource:

http://www.amazon.com/You-Are-Your-Own-Gym/dp/0971407614

0dbd7154d909b97fe774d1655754f195

(16131)

on January 23, 2012
at 05:16 PM

I agree. I have this book on Kindle. My only tip: Don't buy such a book on Kindle. Much better to have a book to flip through especially when reading about exercise.

3
8949bf87b0e0aefcad10f29975e4fa2b

(8989)

on January 23, 2012
at 03:01 PM

Chop wood. Carry water. Shovel a neighbor's driveway. Ski to work. Re-arrange the boxes at the top of your closet (weekly?). Carry some old lady's groceries for her. Go out and play on a jungle jim.

3
77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on January 23, 2012
at 02:04 PM

I know you said no equipment, but a single kettlebell, and one exercise (the kettlebell swing) will work your whole posterior chain with a single exercise.Throw in Turkish getups and you have a whole body workout in two exercises with one piece of equipment...

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on January 23, 2012
at 10:27 PM

My issue is that when I do it on my left side, my form is perfect, for some reason, I really struggle with form on my right side, and it still feels awkward.

Ce7e28769d92d5de5533e775b1de966e

on January 23, 2012
at 10:03 PM

Still trying to get my Turkish Getup down, I'm always so worried that I'll drop the bar or KB on my head that I start giggling out of stress and have to roll over. ARR!

2
Ce7e28769d92d5de5533e775b1de966e

on January 23, 2012
at 10:02 PM

Ok.. so no "purchased" equipment I guess? I see you're including a backpack, so maybe you could do jugs of water for the dumb bells? Everyone has most definitely given you great advice, squats will save your life!

In addition, google Tabata body weight exercises as mixing those in will do nothing but round you out nicely - get the heart up, help keep you lean, not detrimental to muscle gain. One of my favourites is: 20 seconds air squats, 10 second break, 20 seconds sit ups 10 second break - repeat for the 8 sets.

This is a list that's been kicking about PH for awhile, a list of bodyweight WOD's - just do them NFT (not for time) the sets are great, I took the list with me when I went traveling in August for a wedding and was outside of my rental house doing something each morning. Nobody blinks an eye in Maine :)

2
36ba71ea8bc4f736f4113433fde572bd

(347)

on January 23, 2012
at 02:31 PM

Generally looking for a total of 90 seconds per exercise under load. You won't need any backpacks or weights for any of these.

  • Floor:
    • Press to headstand, progressing to press to handstand (will require a small platform for your head for the progression, like some books)
    • L-sit on your fists (knuckles), palms, or fingertips
    • Frog stand, progressing towards planche
    • Sprints
    • Air squats
    • One-legged squats (hard)
  • Wall:
    • Handstands against a wall, progressing to free-standing
  • Platform:
    • Jumps to platforms
    • Depth drops
  • Hill or stairs:
    • Up hill or stairs sprint
    • Down hill sprint (probably dangerous, but works different muscles)
  • Bar:
    • Chin-ups
    • German hang, progressing to 360 pull
    • Front lever progressions
    • Back lever progressions

Secondary benefits (the primary being strength) to many of these include balance, proprioception, flexibility, and some conditioning.

I recommend Building the Gymnastic Body for excellent overview of many exercises requiring little equipment.

2
A968087cc1dd66d480749c02e4619ef4

(20436)

on January 23, 2012
at 01:53 PM

Your list is most excellent! A few things come to mind to fill in gaps, but you're probably good with what you have...

Inverted Rows - the answer for the horizontal pulling motion that you are missing... This shows how to do it with a kitchen table (down the page a bit).
http://nerdfitness.com/blog/2009/11/06/inverted-row-are-you-missing-out-on-this-great-exercise/

Reverse Crunches - http://exercise.about.com/od/abs/ss/abexercises_7.htm
A little more Ab work - why not?

If you can manage hand stand pushups - that would sub for a shoulder press (vertical push move).

8c8e71eb729c0edb4786c6f3ba8614e4

(568)

on January 23, 2012
at 07:41 PM

I can do about 2-4 pullups at a time (depending on day and energy levels), should I still be looking into inverted rows?

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on January 23, 2012
at 10:34 PM

Yep. If you are doing pushups, you need to be doing inverted rows.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on January 23, 2012
at 02:01 PM

+1 for the inverted rows! Build a back like a gorilla...

Bf57bcbdc19d4f1728599053acd020ab

(5043)

on January 23, 2012
at 05:46 PM

another +1 for inverted rows particularly the part where he says this is the exercise to do to get yourself ready to do a pull up. Yeah!

Bf57bcbdc19d4f1728599053acd020ab

(5043)

on January 23, 2012
at 05:48 PM

another +1 for inverted rows! Maybe some day I will be able to do a pull up...

1
D1728f99db66ff91d695a6df5cd38b02

(1368)

on January 23, 2012
at 04:42 PM

Burpees, with hand release push-ups at the bottom. (more of a cardio exercise but they are really hard so I suggest trying them anyway.) Hand stand push ups. (If you get tired of doing regular push ups, try doing them upside down!)

1
E48146ad243fab742e69d10b633e05d6

on January 23, 2012
at 02:01 PM

Www.bodyrock.tv :-)

Da681d976130df15aac3984013aaad6d

(720)

on January 23, 2012
at 08:44 PM

This used to be a great site with the old host (they recently split), now she has a new youtube page...look up "zuzka Light" there are also old body weight routines on bodyrock.tv with Zuzana...just go to archives and skip the British chick...she pales in comparison.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on January 23, 2012
at 02:09 PM

Ugh. Overly perky Australian accent. Your link should come with a warning sticker, not for viewing by non-morning people before noon... +1 though, for providing a good resource...

E48146ad243fab742e69d10b633e05d6

(165)

on January 23, 2012
at 03:05 PM

Lol, agreed, the workouts are good though.

59ee717de524f921efb7f2984157339f

(871)

on March 30, 2012
at 08:11 PM

Lisa is english, not Aussie ;) sorry. big difference. lol

1
24df4e0d0e7ce98963d4641fae1a60e5

on January 23, 2012
at 01:52 PM

Check out HillFit by Chris Highcock of Conditioning Research. It's intended for hikers and backpackers, but I started this yesterday to counter an unusual sedentary period from being mostly cooped up with winter. My bodyweight is better than the equipment (low weight dumbbells) that I have.

I receive no compensation for this endorsement, but Chris is worthy of it!

Bdf98e5a57befa6f0877f978ba09871c

on January 27, 2012
at 04:09 AM

I just bought the ebook, because of travel to a very hilly area in a few months. This looks solidly good, especially to make some real progress without anything complicated.

0
Ff1dbd6cecad1e69a8234fb2c2c5c5ed

(1409)

on January 30, 2012
at 02:41 PM

Convict Conditioning.

0
293ba4c95d190bc616b27d85b10d705a

(661)

on January 23, 2012
at 08:33 PM

pilates, definitely

0
B525b3e4b1d6f1cdceec943cdec6eb7d

(1680)

on January 23, 2012
at 04:09 PM

Carry your groceries home. As time goes by, buy more and more food per shopping trip.

Put groceries in whatever form of luggage you like. Will it be rolling luggage that you lift now and then, and carry up three flights of stairs once you get to your apartment? Or will it be a giant duffle bag that you carry across your shoulders as if it were a sandbag or a log? Or a backpack? Either way, this is Lifting Heavy Stuff.

8c8e71eb729c0edb4786c6f3ba8614e4

(568)

on January 23, 2012
at 07:43 PM

I already do this, but I don't think I can carry more than 4 shopping bags + a completely full backpack, there is just no more space on me to hold on to more!

0
Ef9f83cb4e1826261a44c173f733789e

on January 23, 2012
at 01:59 PM

Isometrics.

"A system of physical exercises in which muscles are caused to act against each other or against a fixed object. Also called isometric exercise."

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on January 23, 2012
at 02:02 PM

Carl, do you have any photos or examples of folks in really good shape and who also look good using solely isometrics?

Ef9f83cb4e1826261a44c173f733789e

(13635)

on January 24, 2012
at 04:42 PM

I'm not sure about solely. Bruce Lee used isometrics.

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