T Nation

No Heavy Weights, No Squat Rack


#1

Just relocated for a job. Place I work has a gym which is nice, but the dumbells only go to 25kg and there is no power rack for heavy squats. There are oly bars and barbells as well as a leg extension/hammer curl machine. My usual training was always strength focused which will not be possible here, however I would like to do a lean bulk and maintain fitness.

My question is mainly regarding leg work. I am thinking that run/sprint workouts with one high volume leg day in the gym for leg development and conditioning and then leave gym mainly for upper body splits? There is plenty of resources for upper.
Anyone who has experienced something similar please advise.


#2

I’d get a carpet sled and pull that for leg work in that situation. Very easy to bring into the gym, can load it up heavy, and really hammer the lower body.


#3

Hack squats and deadlifts. You can use a deficit if you want and straps as needed.


#4

Learn how to power clean well enough to do not kill yourself, then do high rep front squats.


#5

If you could pistol squat those DBs, you would be king of the world.

I’ve seen guys load up the bar on dip stations and on ply boxes. I wouldn’t use any wall mounted stuff as it could bring down a weak wall (and be careful you don’t tip the thing.)


#6

Not necessarily the exercises you do, but your rep range and rest between sets.
5 sets 12 reps, same weight every set. The key is to keep the rest between sets low. When I do this program I try to keep the rest to 20 breaths, maybe 30 on the later sets if I need to.
The first couple of sets can feel ridiculously easy, but the last couple of sets will feel like motherfuckers. When you can consistently hit 12 reps on all sets slightly increase the weight.
Do front squats, due to the short rests it is unlikely even a strong man would need more weight than they can comfortably clean from the floor.


#7

Cheers lads appreciate the ideas. I did Bulgarian split squats off the bench with the 25’s for 6x10 which actually was pretty tough for the last few sets. Probably get some plyos in as well as the high rep stuff. Stiff leg DL will be my big movement for hamstrings as there is enough weight and it doesn’t require oly plates or a platform.


#8

I train at home without equipment.
These are some of the things i do for legs. I also do goblet squats and dumbbell stiff legged deadlifts.
My reps are always high around 15, 20 per set. Sometimes i go as high as 50 reps.
I also use intensity techniques like 1 1/2 reps, rest pause and drop sets.
I am also planning to buy an olympic bar to do landmine squats.
In addition to those, you can do various types of lunges ( i hate them ) and jump squats.
I am sure there are a lot more you can do, more experienced lifters can help you about that.


#9

Sucks that you can’t do regular squats, but it’s an opportunity to hit legs in (perhaps) new ways:

Sumo deadlifts - hits legs harder than convential, and the focus is on strength

Romanian deadlifts for hamstrings

Front or Zercher squats for overall legs (as long as you go deep to hit posterior). Must clean for the former, and deadlift, then creatively place in crux of arms for the latter (crouch down while placing barbell on quads, then hook with arms in supinated position - a bit awkward).

Jefferson squats (I think Phil Heath has a video of him doing this somewhere)

Hack squats (not a big fan of this, as it seems unnatural, and seems to place a lot of stress on knees, but I don’t really know since I only tried this once or twice)


#10

[quote]GAINZ101 wrote:
Cheers lads appreciate the ideas. I did Bulgarian split squats off the bench with the 25’s for 6x10 which actually was pretty tough for the last few sets. Probably get some plyos in as well as the high rep stuff. Stiff leg DL will be my big movement for hamstrings as there is enough weight and it doesn’t require oly plates or a platform.[/quote]

Is it stiff-leg DLs, or Romanian DLs that you are planning on doing? I find that RDLs hit the hamstrongs way better. The difference is that I keep the bar in contact with my legs at all times with the RDL. With the SLDL, the bar is further out, and thus hits the spinal erectors more.