Limited Equipment, Need Creative Ideas

My job requires me to be as fit and strong as possible for my size. I’m 6’ tall and weigh 170 lbs. I have very low body fat. The job also demands long hours and is at odds with a normal gym schedule. I don’t even have access to a gym!

I’ve been doing a work-out consisting of body-weight squats, body-weight deads, push-ups, sit-ups, pull-ups, and dips. I also run every day that I’m off work, rotating through a long distance run, intervals, and sprinting, on separate days.

I’m wondering if you guys have any suggestions of things that I can add to my regimen to mix things up. I have a pair of 45 lb. dumbbells at home that currently aren’t seeing any use. I also have a 45 lb. weighted vest that I use when sprinting or running stairs. I don’t have a bench or rack. Ideas of things I can do without joining a gym and without buying more equipment?


[quote]eiverson wrote:
I’ve been doing a work-out consisting of … body-weight deads,[/quote]


What is a body-weight dead? Just bending down and standing up?

Thats an article by Dan John where he didnt have a gym membership and made due, maybe it’l give you some ideas.

And just to offer some suggestions, with the dumbbells you can do a lot of things, but your progress will be somewhat limited since with no ability to change the poundage. You can do all the standard dumbbell movements: curls, raises, presses, rows, etc. To get a little more creative, you could do turkish get-ups, dumbbell swings, and dumbbell throws.

You could also add the dumbbells as resistance to your bodyweight work – dumbbell squats, weighted pull ups and dips. You could also try some sprints holding the bells.

As far as bodyweight movements, try more difficult variations of the stuff you are already doing – handstand push ups, one-hand and uneven grip pull ups, sternum pull ups, holds for time, etc. Also, you could do sports-style calisthenics (burpees, mountain climbers, bear crawls, crab walks, etc) and circuit work outs.

You’re not going to get very strong doing this, but it’s better than nothing.

[quote]malonetd wrote:
eiverson wrote:
I’ve been doing a work-out consisting of … body-weight deads,


What is a body-weight dead? Just bending down and standing up?[/quote]

Check out the single leg deadlifts in this article.

What kind of job could this be? It requires you to be fit and strong pound for pound but doesn’t invest anything in training you or compensate a gym membership?

You can go a lot of body weight stuff but if i were you i would make a minor investment in some equipment of a membership to a cheap gym.


Thanks for the suggestions!

I would need access to a 24 hour gym because of the hours I work. I could join a gym and work out on my days off, but days off are few and far between. I’ve been using them for my running.

Perhaps I’ll save up and invest in some more equipment. What’s a good starting point for a home gym? A bench for benchpress? Some weights to do deadlifts? I’d need a rack to do squats, right? I don’t have room for much equipment in my apartment.

For starters, just get a bar and some weights. You can do a lot to get strong with only that.

You could make most of the equipment here:

for less then $100 total, and it’d get you really strong.


Thanks for this guys. I got a bar, a bench and some weights. Also got some tires, concrete blocks and sandbags for my back yard. Joined a gym too, although it’s rare I can work out there due to my limited hours.

Check out he has lots of free articles and a forum there… also take a look at his book “infinite intensity” as a lot of the stuff you can do with minimal equipment and it gives a 50 day plan that would get you in very good condition.

As the poster mentioned above, buy Ross Enamait’s Never Gymless. Its thee best book on bodyweight training, offers advice on cheap portable equipment, and is an easy read!!!

The Underground Guide to Fitness Warrior is a book I’d recommend. It has lots of great excercises which you can do using only your bodyweight :slight_smile:

Farmers walks with “anything” heavy, Heavy tire dragging & pulling, heavy sledge hammer swings. Homemade Heavy sandbags for squats, deads, & whatever are pretty safe for home use. You can just drop it anytime unlike a loaded bar.
Awsome movement, clean a heavy sandbag to one shoulder, squat down, then explode up throwing the sandbag off, all over again to the other shoulder, then back n forth. WOOOO, GOOD TIMES

Buy yourself a 300 lb barbell set. Learn how to Power Clean (so you can rack the bar for OHP and front squats). Get a pull-up bar.

Read about Complexes:

And the one from yesterday:

You can do them with dumbells too. I haven’t really tried that though.