Convict Conditioning - body weight squats

Hard gainer here. Then again, I don’t take eating seriously as in I prefer to eat less/intermittent fasting. My question is if barbell squats really make a huge difference for mass in leg region compared to bodyweight squats with high reps. I ask because I’m doing Convict Conditioning now and my only concern is the bodyweight squats. My legs are my worst attribute as in they are skinny compared to the rest of my body and my calves are really skinny too. My upperbody is naturally well defined and strong. I’ve been squatting two-three times a week for a while and have seen decent but not amazing gains. I usually barbell squat but now I want to take a break for like 3-6 months and do a bodyweight program. I’m wondering if I just increase the calories and do the body-weight squats, if that would be just as good if not better than low calorie but with barbell squats. Anyone have any anecdotes?

Loading will be superior to not loading. But, if you’re adamant about not doing any sort of loaded squat, maybe give this a go

No Weights, Big Wheels - T Nation Content - COMMUNITY - T NATION (


I might do kettlebell goblet squats at most. Squatting has always sucked for me and I never liked the way it felt. I exclusively low-bar squat. I’m wondering if I just rep out kettlebell goblets, sprints and body-weight squats - if consistency plus higher calories would be just as good. I’m sure if I ate a f*ck ton and barbell squatted heavy then I’d be even bigger but I’m not sure by how much or if it’s worth it for me at this point (just statrted a business and am super busy, don’t want to spend my day eating for now)

Are belt squats an option?

Hmm never heard of them

Hip Belt Squat: Builds Legs, Saves Spines - T Nation Content - COMMUNITY - T NATION (

Tip: The Modified Belt Squat (

Also be sure to check out John McCallum’s “The Complete Keys to Progress” where he speaks very well of the exercise.


Not to be a smart ass, but I’m just tying these sentences together.

What makes your chest grow more, bench or pushups? Think about the parallel there. Body-weight squats are great. I love doing them as a finisher. But maybe more calories and more heavy leg volume could be an option.

Edit; I just saw this

You didn’t need my post.

Don’t forget about 1 leg stuff. You can get double the weight and still go unweighted.

Rear foot elevated split squat.

Skater Squat

Touchdown Squat

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Anecdotally, I’ve hated squats for awhile too and I feel like I can target quads more effectively on one leg.

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Look up the term diminished returns.

You ever done walking lunges until you’re about to fall over? One of my favorite exercises. OP, although i am a big proponent of squatting until death, 10x10 , heavy weight, can barely walk the next day. I can get similar results spamming lunges. I think the unilateral work is good too for carry over into squatting and general athleticism.

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You mean a set of 2?

…I have the coordination of a drunken one legged tazmanian devil.


I usually go to the end of my street and back, maybe about football field total length. And then ill follow up with some stuff if my quads arent about to explode. Id like to make a trip around my block one day but i dont know if i would make it before needing a wheelchair.

Quad pump and burn is real.

If we’re talking unilateral quad pump and burn, nothing beats out a backwards sled drag for me. The lack of eccentric makes it positively evil, because you can pretty much go forever: it’s on YOU to quit.

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I hated squats until I found out I was quad dominant/sleepy glutes. Then I worked on some activation drills and started way way liking them.

It goes with our natural tendency to do what we’re good at. Most people don’t lift to feel weak & puzzled. They want to feel good and strong.

I know there’s a ton of stuff on here about glute activation, mostly by St. Brett Contreras.

I’d say look that up and give it about 6 mos. of honest effort.

Belt squats, broad jumps, squat jumps and walking lunges will fry your legs.

This is my go to summer Saturday workout.