How to build muscle at home without equipment

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Are you interested in learning how to build muscle at home without equipment? In times like these there has become more people interested in building muscle and getting into all-around better shape without actually going to a gym.

It has always been a great inspiration builder to workout in the gym where you can get together with training buddies and trade training secrets and spot each other on heavy lifts, but with things getting a little more out of control with the covid, it may be necessary to start working out at home a little more frequently.

In today’s subject we will be talking about training at home and how to build muscle without equipment. This will typically involve body weight exercises, but to add a degree of interest to this post, we will be taking a look at some ways that you can work your muscles and develop extra cardio in your training system at home while winter is coming.

We all know that winter can add challenges to our lives, but if you live in a climate where you get snow, we will be taking a look at some outdoor activities in the winter time that will help with burning extra calories and building muscle.

Training at home

Bodyweight exercise, crunches

Many people find it difficult to get inspired to train at home. Training at the gym can add excitement to your training by having a wider variety of training equipment, the opportunity to meet new people, have people on hand to spot you in an exercise and the list can go on.

Unfortunately things have been getting more difficult these days with the covid-19 pandemic spreading wider and affecting more people, and this can make it difficult to get out and enjoy the things that we were once able to do before the pandemic ever struck.

Training at home can represent different problems depending on what your situation is. Many people don’t like training at home because they don’t have the motivation. It can be difficult to strike up the motivation when your weights are right in your own home and you have way too many distractions that can easily keep you from getting your workout in.

A good way to deal with this problem is you will need to set a specific time each day that you will work out. If you leave your schedule open to wide for working out, it will be more difficult to stick with getting your workout in at the same time every day.

If you keep a strict time to get your workout in every day, it will make it much easier for you to stick with a training program and not allow other things to pop up and distract you from working out.

Another thing that can help is you should put your phone on silent and turn your TV off at the time that is designated for your workout. If there are other distractions such as people, let them know that the specified time that you have set for your workout (you need to be left alone).

If you have small children, it would be a good idea to get someone to watch them while you get your workout in. The same thing goes for your job, obviously having a job is important and you need to have your time distraction free to work, the same should be true for your own physical health and well-being, you will need to make sure that you have distraction free time for yourself as well.

There is also the challenge of having enough room in your own home for workout equipment, but if you are having a challenge with this, there is the option of outdoor training.

Even if you live in a climate where you have winter (and the snow will be flying pretty soon), there are different great activities that you can engage in during the winter time that we will be covering next.

Snow shoes for outdoor winter fitness activity.

Outdoor winter activities

Another option that you can keep open for your training at home and with winter coming is there are different outdoor activities that you can engage in during the winter time, that is if you are subject to Winter conditions due to where you live.

Many people would just as soon stay indoors when possible when the weather is cold outside, but if you are not able to train at a gym due to covid shutdowns and your training is only subject to your own home, you might not have enough space indoors to have workout equipment.

If your home or apartment has limited space and you don’t have room for workout equipment, or if you don’t have the money to purchase indoor equipment, there are activities that you can do outdoors.

During good weather, there are always multiple ideas that you can engage in for outdoor activity such as biking, jogging, hiking and the list can go on, but what about outdoor activities during the winter?

Walking is good exercise, but how about the idea of walking with snowshoes? Walking with snowshoes can represent a whole new challenge if you are not accustomed to it. You have the snow to trek through, and lifting the additional weight of the snow shoes can be an extra challenge if your legs are not used to the additional exertion that walking with snow shoes can put on your legs.

Skiing is another excellent option that can represent an excellent challenge for your muscles and cardiovascular system. Cross-country skiing can give your heart and lungs a great workout as well as your whole body.

Skis and snowshoes will cost a little additional money, but they are much cheaper than home workout equipment, and if you don’t have the room in your home to store gym equipment, it will be much easier to get out and enjoy some outdoor activity that can give your body a great workout and help with burning additional calories.

Bar dips home training activity.

Training for muscle

If you find yourself confined to just training at home and you don’t have the room or money for weight training equipment, it can be a good idea to set up a training program in your own home where you are simply incorporating body weight exercises.

If you are serious about building muscle, your best chances of building some good size muscles would need to include some workout equipment such as free weights, but if you don’t have access to this type of equipment, there are many good body weight exercises that you can do that will do a great job of developing muscle.

A standard exercise that has always been popular for chest training is the the bench press, you can replicate this exercise at home simply by doing push-ups. If push-ups don’t represent much of a challenge, maybe you might have someone nearby that can sit on your upper back to add additional resistance.

For leg training, the basic exercise that does a great job for thighs is the squat. A great bodyweight exercise that you can do in your own home that will replicate the squats are deep knee bends.

There are many great body weight exercises that you can do in your own home that will add additional muscle, but in the next section, we will be covering exercises that you can do that will cover your entire body and how to put a workout program together.

Putting a workout program together

Surprisingly enough, one of the greatest challenges people have when they are first starting up a workout program is knowing how to put a workout program together. They don’t know what the best exercises are to do for an individual muscle, or they might be unsure of how to group exercises together to form a workout or how often a week they should train a muscle.

Next we will be taking a look at exercises that work each muscle of your body, and a workout program giving you an idea of how to group the exercise together with the amount of sets and reps that you can use for each exercise.

A simple strategy that I quite frequently follow is the push-pull method. The push-pull method is when you do push muscles for your upper body one day, your legs and core on the second day and pull muscles on the third day. There are other push-pull methods such as the option supplied by the link, but the push-pull method supplied in this post is the one that I typically will follow.

Once you have completed three days of training, you have covered your entire body. On the next 3 days you repeat the cycle covering each muscle group two times per week.

DAY ONE

On day one you will be covering push muscles which are chest, shoulders and triceps. For chest, you can alternate between doing standard push-ups and decline push-ups. Decline push-ups are where you will have your hands on the floor and your feet on a chair so that your head is lower than your legs.

Push-ups with added resistance.
Push-ups with added resistance.

The advantage behind doing decline push-ups is it will simulate the incline bench press where you will be working more of your upper chest.

Shoulder training you will be working bar dips and bench dips into your routine. Bar dips and bench dips are two exercises that will work your chest, but they also do a great job of working your shoulders.

For triceps, you will be including narrow grip push-ups into your routine. Along with the combination of doing narrow grip push-ups and the other exercises for chest and shoulders, you should be getting plenty of triceps activity in for your (day one training).

If 12 reps is a challenge for you on any of these exercises, simply do as many reps as you can and work up to more reps from there. If 12 reps is too easy, there might be a way that you can add additional weight to your exercises such as having someone sit on your upper back or on your lap.

DAY TWO

On day two you will be working legs and core. First of all for legs you can start out with doing deep knee bends which are a great exercise for developing the quads. From there you can move on to doing lunges which are another excellent exercise for developing the quads and working the cardiovascular system.

 

A great body weight exercise for developing the calves are the single leg calf raises. Another exercise that works great for calves are donkey calf raises. You can work these into your program if you have someone to sit on your lower back when performing this exercise.

For your core training, the best exercises I have found for developing a solid core are plank exercises. Plank exercises are where you have your elbow or both elbows on the floor depending on which variation you are performing and your feet on the floor while keeping your torso straight and off the floor.

  • Deep knee bends, four sets, 12 reps
  • Lunges, four sets, 12 reps
  • Single leg calf raises, five sets, 12 reps
  • Donkey calf raises, five sets, 12 reps, if you don’t have a training partner to sit on your lower back when performing this exercise, simply do more than five sets per leg for the single leg calf raises.
  • Standard planks face down, five sets, as long as you can hold it
  • Side planks, five sets, as long as you can hold it

DAY THREE

On day three you will be working pull muscles which will be back, traps and biceps. For your back training, an excellent exercise are the wide grip chins. If you don’t have a chinning bar, you can use anything that is sturdy enough and high enough while keeping your feet off the floor such as a clothesline pole or anything else that will do a good job.

 

Another excellent exercise for training back is the barbell rows, but for body weight training, an excellent exercise to do that will replicate the barbell rows are chair rows.

A good body weight exercise for training traps are hanging shrugs. Hanging shrugs you can perform on the same bar that you use for wide grip chins.

Reverse grip chins are an excellent exercise for working the biceps, you can use the same bar for your other chinning exercises as for the reverse grip chins.

When performing a combination of these back and bicep exercises together in the same workout, you should be getting a pretty good bicep workout because the back training exercises will also target your biceps to a degree.

  • Wide grip chins, four sets, 12 reps
  • Chair rows, four sets, 12 reps
  • Hanging shrugs, five sets, 12 reps
  • Reverse grip chins, five sets, 12 reps

As stated earlier, if 12 reps are too difficult for you to perform with any one of these given exercises, simply do as many reps as you can and work your way up. If 12 reps are too easy, see if you can find an additional weight or brick and fasten around your waist with a rope or chain for additional weight.

Having someone to train with

It always works best when we have someone to work out with for moral support and motivational purposes. Training with someone is also a great way to help stimulate your muscles into better growth by getting the additional resistance supplied by someone when you are performing a lift and you may need an additional boost to push out that one or two extra reps.

We don’t always have someone on hand that can work out with us, especially if we are training at home and we live by ourselves. But if you don’t have someone to train with, it is not the end of the world, keep training with as much intensity as you can and remember that if you keep pushing yourself with as much intensity as you can and stick with your training program, you will definitely see good results.

Physical fitness at home can have it's benefits.
Physical fitness at home can have it’s benefits.

Conclusion

I think that we have covered some pretty solid exercises, and if you stick with this program you should definitely be able to see some pretty good results. Always remember to keep a training routine written down and have a structured path to follow as to what specific time you will be working out each day.

In order to obtain best results, it will be necessary to follow a healthy diet structured around healthy carbohydrates such as fresh fruits and vegetables as well as lean protein like tuna, fish and chicken.

Along with following a healthy diet of whole foods, it will be a good idea for you to have some kind of idea of precisely how many calories you will need per day to build muscle for your age weight and activity level.

To get an idea of how many calories you will need per day to maintain your weight, simply click on this link and visit a calorie calculator.

Once you have determined how many calories you will need per day to maintain your body weight, you will need to develop a caloric surplus to build muscle. In order to do this you will need to add on an additional 300 calories of lean healthy food per day onto the amount of calories that you will need per day to maintain your body weight.

For example if you need 2700 calories per day to maintain your body weight, you will need to consume 3000 calories per day in order to build muscle.

In order to build good quality muscle, it is not only necessary to lift weights, or in the case of this article, perform body weight exercises, but it is also necessary to follow a healthy diet and set up for yourself a calorie surplus.


Many people also find it helpful to consume a supplementation product along with their diet. This is something that I have been following for years and I believe that it has contributed to muscle gain through additional protein in my diet.

To check out one of my product reviews on protein supplementation, simply click on this link to purchase a product.

If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to leave a comment in the box below and I will be happy to get back to you as soon as possible.

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