T Nation

On a Ship With a Pair of Dumbbells

I am stationed on a ship in the USCG. All I have to lift with is a pair of adjustable bowflex dumbells. They go up to 52.5 lbs. I need a lifting routine while I am underway (2 months at a time). I do burpees (200-300) for my cardio.

Well, don’t give us any information that is to specific or that we might be able to use to help you. Like stats, goals…

Your right. I am 5’7 175 lbs with an 18%bf. (Down from about 230 lbs and much more fat a few years ago) My goal is to reach 10% bf. I prefer the body of a soccer player to that of a linebacker.

Throw some bodyweight drills in. Get creative.

You could do push up variations, dumbell snatches, overhead squat, lat raises, shoulder presses, Arnold presses, possibly thrusters (if you have access to an inclined bench), lunges, jumping squats (not that there are a lot of places to jump below deck, to my knowledge), db bench press, curls, step ups onto a bench or chair or whatever you have available, chest flyes, reverse flyes.

There’s a shit load of different movements you could do, but with only 100 total lbs available, you’ll probably have to do a to do a lot of reps at a high tempo in order to reap the benefits.

I would try doing some sort of conglomerate variation of the exercises above: for example, you could could clean the dumbbells, press them above your head, then do an overhead squat. Call that 1 rep. I would start out with sets of about 3-5 sets of 15 reps with short rest periods.

Like someone else said earlier, you’ll have to be fairly creative, but you can also probably have a decent workout and stay in good shape if you play your cards right.

[quote]tthornell wrote:
Your right. I am 5’7 175 lbs with an 18%bf. (Down from about 230 lbs and much more fat a few years ago) My goal is to reach 10% bf. I prefer the body of a soccer player to that of a linebacker.[/quote]

The one leg variety of drills is every bit as demanding as the two. Case in point. With one leg and the two dumbells loaded to 52.5 each, that is your body weight 175 + 105 pounds. That is 280lbs total. The two leg nearly equiv is 560-175 or 385. You get the point?

Yes some of the system weight is supported by the back leg in bulg split squats, but reps with a true one leg squat with 105 addl pounds is pretty damned impressive.

You can do front squats with the arms extended out in front. Two legs up, one leg down. Short stroke lunges, long stroke lunges. One leg stiff leg deads. King deadlifts. added weight chins. body weight plus rows. narrow, underhand grip chins with added weight supersetted with dumbell curls…You are only going to be limited by your imagination.

Do body weight exercises, when that gets too easy, throw those dumbells in a backpack and continue.

Doing pushups with 100lbs on your back will be more challenging than simply pressing 100lbs. Same goes for the rest of thw workouts.

Google “dumbell routines”, you will get the idea.

Chin-ups/pull-ups (weighted if you have the strength and equip)… when that ship is taking 10-20 degree rolls and lists that certainly adds a degree of difficulty!

Assuming the gym on a cutter isnt very well equipped, the body weight exercises most people seem to be recommending certainly will suffice. In rough seas, weights can be dangerous.

Since you want to loose some more body fat try focusing on getting down a few more percent while you are on the ship. Keep up with the lifting as best as you can with the dumbbells. I’m guessing you can approach 14% body fat in eight weeks without any problems. Once you get back to shore you can reevaluate your progress toward your goals and decide on the next step to take.