Training Without Weights
I'm a 37 year old male, 5'10, 160lbs. I recently started Karate with my son and would like to increase my strength and fitness.
I have access to a bike (and live in a very hilly area) for cardio / leg work, however I would like peoples' opinions on a training regime I could implement without the need to visit a gym or use weights as I would need to exercise from home due to time / budget constraints.
My goal is to increase strength, flexibility and cardio fitness whilst adding approx 15lbs of muscle mass - I don't want to be big - just stronger and not quite so "lean".
Your comments are appreciated.
I'm not an expert (other's on here are) but,
for a start, wrong forum; everyone in the weight training forum has always used wieghts.
Please explain why no weights? Bruce Lee used weights effectively:
If you don't use weights you're only be using your body weight instead.
I think what you mean is - exercise I can do without being in a gym. In which case you could try:
- sand bags
- bottles of water with handles
- chin bars
and all the usual exercises:
- situps etc
- plenty more I'm sure
When my gym membership runs out I'm gonna see if I can work as hard without joining a gym. The biggest problem I suspect will be motivation; just going somewhere helps.
Thanks for the information... I really want to start out with a program I can implement from home without weights as I can't afford to go to the gym or buy weights and most of my spare time is spent with my kids.
I was thinking of push-ups, chin-ups, tricep dips, crunches and bike riding (hilly area remember), combined with a program of stretches.
Would this be a good starting program - Once I've stuck to this for a while I may be able to justify the cost of a gym membership.
You can do all that exercises and just buy some weight plates to progressivly raise the resitance. For instance, you could do crunches holding a plate on you chest.
Aso see hyper-extensions or supermans to hit the lower back and the hams.
For working out the legs you could do sprints. Try something like a HIIT program (sprint 30 sec + running 1 min + sprint + run + ...). You can also do HITT with the bike. But be carfull, don't start sprinting without the proper fisical preparation... and don't forget to warmup (run 3-5 min) and cool-down in every HITT session. You can also do some lungues to hit the legs.
I train with weights at home, and legs are the most expensive to train because they can handle much more weight than the other body parts Maybe they will be the most difcult body part to hit without weights.
Try to get more info on these subjects and don't go just by my opinion
Thanks all... I'll look into these subjects and put together my program from there.
I used to avoid weights totally until I was about 22. Instead I used to do loads of pressups. One year I set myself a target of 40,000 pressups in the year. I could do over 120 without stopping and with proper form.
Despite what I've read on forums such as this one, I found that this made me significantly stronger and I packed on a reasonable amount of muscle especially in the chest, triceps, anterior delts and lats. When I first tried weights I found I could bench 257lb after a couple of weeks training. What's more I found that doing lots of pressups made me feel really good in a way weights doesn't. To get better muscle symmetry I later started doing chin ups and dips.
If you want strength without weights you could do a lot worse than to do pressups, chinups and situps/crunches daily. The same principals apply as for weights though - always work until muscle failure no matter how many reps this is and concentrate on good form. Also listen to your body, if you're really tired take a few days off. If you feel good, do a few hundred more reps. Also vary the way in which you perform the exerise e.g wide-arm, close arm, legs raised, fast, slow, really slow.
Body weight exercises can be fitted anywhere into your day no matter how busy you are. A word of warning though, don't do them immediately after getting out of bed, i tore a pec doing this, warm up a bit first. Also bear in mind bodyweight exercises will make you stronger, give you some muscle growth and a lot of tone and endurance they won't however turn you into the next powerlifting champion, for this you need heavy weight.
My advice - don't faff about with lots of different exercises just do loads and loads of the big 3 - pressups, chin ups and ab exercises. Oh I also found it very useful to keep a record of how many I'd done each day and what my maximums were. This is great to look back on and follow your progress.
Re: Training Without Weights
If you feel like investing in a book or video
is about the best written and comprehensive book on the subject that stresses on form and concentration rather than on a number of exercises.
I just came back from a fitness vacation where we worked exclusively with body weight since we were in the middle of nowhere.
We did push ups, pull ups, dips, planks, side planks, twisted planks, one leg squats (both pistols and air borne), walking lunges. We did slow motion kicks and punches and lots of mountain biking and hiking. Body weight exercises build tons of confidence in a 3D world. Good luck
Thanks again people... some great ideas and suggestions there.
Does anyone have thoughts on using tubes / bands for resistance training - can this be used to build muscle mass or just tone ?
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