T Nation

Help with Routine, Minimal Equipment


I just got deployed overseas and the gym back home was what any modern, new gym would be like and I was kind of expecting the same thing here, but it was a big change. The only equipment we have in this gym is bench, squat rack, kettle bells and a pull up bar.

For a routine I normally just grab a book from my dad that he has laying around and do that and it has always worked out pretty good. But a lot of the routines call for exersices that I can't do here due to lack of equipment. I just need help with my routine, if its ok, or how to make it better, etc. This is what I have been doing.

Day 1
flat bench
military press
pull ups

Day 2
dead lift
incline bench
over head shrug
skull crushers
pull ups

Day 3
Hang cleans
decline bench
miliary press
pull ups

I'm trying to do the best that I can. I've always been told you can neglect iso movements but never neglect compound movements, so I do what I know. If anyone can help me out on what to do, that'd be great.


first off, what are your stats? Age, height, weight, current best lifts?

What are your goals?

I am not a fan of your current routine but your routine depends on what your goals are.


I'm 20 years old, approxemitly 5'7 and 165lbs. My current best lifts are 165 hang clean, 135 military press, 175 bench. Dead lift and squat I have no idea what I can max on those due to a knee condition that I have. For dead lift and squat I just do what I can till my knee starts to hurt and normally I use 275 on deadlift and 215 on squat.

My main goals are to gain about 15 lbs while i'm here and lose some fat. I'm currently around 16% bf and I want to get around 9 and weigh about 170-180lbs. I currently don't like my routine, thats why I'm here asking for help. I'm just doing what I'm doing to kind of get back into lifting. Getting ready to deploy takes alot of personal time so its been about 4 months since I was able to get into a gym regularly.

Not being able to go all out on dead lift and squat, will that effect me in any other areas?


I know what it's like to deploy. I was in the military for 6 years and was gone on work trips all the time.

The big thing with making physique changes is your diet. You're going to need to get that in order I'd you want to make some serious changes. 180 @ 9% is a pretty lofty goal in 6 months but you can do it (or get very close to it) if you really buckle down and do the right things.

How many days a week are you going to be spending in the gym? I'm sure you're going to have PT with your unit pretty regularly as well? With you stats and strength level I would concentrate on lifting as heavy and as often as possible. You'll have to judge this by how quickly your body recovers but shouldn't have any major problem with the equipment you listed.

The key is going to be your diet. You're going to have to bust your ass and be diligent every day for those 6 months if you really want to reach your goals.


If only we did 6 months deployments. We're still on 12 month deployments. So I have plenty of time. We also don't do pt, we're aviaiton (I guess aviaiton doesn't do pt) and we've already been told that our health, weight and exersice is in our hands and that we don't have to take a single pt test while we are here.

My diet is as good as it can be considering I don't have very much control over it, but the mess hall is pretty good about cooking healthy food. Most days they have steamed veggies, baked meats, rice etc. They also have the fat, protein and carb content listed on a board. There is the short order line that is always there but I only eat that once a meal, twice a week. Thats for the pizza and pancakes.

I drink water 98% of the time, i do indulge in a soda about once or twice a week. I eat salad and fresh fruit every meal and for snacks also. I also just ordered some supplements that should be here soon and those are whey protein, a multi, some bcaas, fish oil and caesin protein.

I know diet is the key. I watch that and do the best I can with what I have. My biggest question is how to improve my routine, what can i add or take away? I have been on a 3 day lift schedule (day on, day off, two consecutive days off) I'm normally in the gym for about an hour, hour and half.

Should I stick with full body or should I change to a split and add another day in there? I bust my ass in the gym as hard as I can go, still having some troubles due to the drastic elevation change of 6000 ft. At work we do have tractor tires, when we having nothing to do, I'll start flipping those from one side of the hangar to the other.