How To Work Out With No Equipment

How To Work Out With No Equipment

If you buy into the marketing, hype, and consumerism of modern society, you will no doubt think that you need a gym loaded with barbells, dumbbells, and tons of machines to get a good workout in. Well, just like following a Paleo diet disproves and goes against the grain, so does a Paleo-inspired workout. None of that equipment is needed to get in better shape. In fact, treadmills weren’t even invented until the 1960s, a mere 50-odd years ago! Hunting, gathering, and foraging kept prehistoric man in excellent condition and he didn’t have a globo gym.

Well, what are the benefits of bodyweight exercises, you might ask? Since you will be using your own body as the “weight,” they are not “weightless” exercises. And since I have programmed them for you in a circuit fashion, you will be done faster and will not have to do cardio since circuits work your aerobic capacity as well as your muscles.

High intensity interval training has been proven to help with weight loss and improves metabolic outcomes. Bodyweight exercises also have been proven to improve testosterone levels. These exercises are also great while traveling. Your core strength will improve, as well. And since you will only be spending 20 minutes or less exercising, it’s easy to fit into your schedule and not get bored.

So what did primitive man do, exactly, and how do these workouts compare? Well, here is a rough estimation of what Grok may have done…

Primitive nomadic lifestyles required the continual task of hunting and gathering food for survival. Tribes commonly went on one- or two- day hunting journeys for food and water. Regular physical activity apart from that necessary for hunting and gathering was also a principal component of life. Following successful hunting and gathering excursions, celebration events included trips of six to 20 miles to neighboring tribes to visit friends and family, where dancing and cultural games could often last several hours. This Paleolithic pattern of subsistence pursuit and celebration, demanding a high level of fitness and consisting of various forms of physical activity, defined human life

The History Of Fitness by Lance C. Dalleck, M.S. and Len Kravitz, Ph.D.

So Grok likely did a variety of activity, but no doubt commonly exerted himself at a fairly high level for a brief period of time. Just like these workouts will do for you. This will keep those with minimal time to spare and those with short attention spans equally happy.

These workouts will be done in roughly twenty minutes, depending on your level of fitness. We will be working on your upper body, lower body, core, and also your aerobic capacity and anaerobic capacity. You will need some space (about 10 by 10 feet) but no equipment. Lets go!

First Workout:

  • Burpees
  • Air Squats
  • Push Ups
  • Jumping Jacks
  • Squat Jumps
  • Mountain Climbers
  • Push Ups

*10 Reps Of Every Exercise, Rest 30 seconds, Repeat as many rounds as possible (AMRAP)

This list of 7 exercises should be repeated for 10 repetitions each, before immediately moving on to the next exercise. After all 7 are completed, rest for 30 seconds, and then continue, completing as many rounds as possible.

Burpees – You may remember these from gym class as ‘squat thrusts’. They are done by dropping from a standing position into a push up position, at which point you will bring your feet back towards your hands and stand back up.

Air Squats – Made somewhat famous by CrossFit®, air squats are a simple exercise. Begin by standing shoulder width apart and squat down. Imagine you are sitting in a chair. Keep your weight on your heels and make sure your knees track over your toes. Go as far down as you can, preferably ‘below parallel’, which means your butt below your knees. Stand back up.

Push Ups – The classic prison movie exercise, push ups are a fantastic way to stay or get in shape. With hands on the ground, shoulder width apart, and your core engaged, slowly bring your chest down to the ground and then slowly extend back up. Be sure to keep your glutes (butt) tight and core engaged. Don’t droop!

Jumping Jacks – Start by standing with your arms at your sides. Bring your feet out and your arms up. Then simply move back to the starting position.

Squat Jumps – Starting with an air squat, we explode upwards into a jump from the bottom position of the squat. Immediately descend into the next squat jump.

Mountain Climbers – Starting in the push up position, move one foot towards your hands and then back; alternate with the other foot. Repeat as fast as possible.

Second Workout:

  • Pull Ups
  • Lunges
  • V Sit Ups
  • Planks
  • Chin Ups
  • Back Lunges
  • Mountain Climbers

*5 Reps Of Every Exercise, Rest 30 seconds, Repeat AMRAP

This list of 7 exercises should be repeated for 5 repetitions each, before immediately moving on to the next exercise. After all 7 are completed, rest for 30 seconds, and then continue, completing as many rounds as possible.

Pull Ups – These will require a pull up bar, which can be purchased cheaply and installed in almost any doorframe. With your palms facing away from your body, grab the bar and pull yourself up. Make sure to lower yourself all the way down, not halfway or three quarters, when you start your second repetition.

Lunges – Starting in a standing position, take a big step forward with one leg, stopping when your knee is about to go over your toe. Be sure to keep your torso upright. Push back to the starting position, and repeat with the other leg. That is one repetition.

V Sit Ups – A modification of the classic sit up, these are started by laying flat on your back. Bring your hands forward, and legs up. You will be reaching for your toes. Go all the way back down, without touching the floor, and repeat.

Planks – Instead of starting in a push up position, rest your elbows and forearms on the floor, and maintain a tight core, squeezing your glutes. Hold for as long as possible.

Chin Ups – With palms facing towards the body, grab the pull up bar and pull yourself up. Be sure to lower yourself all the way down, for every repetition.

Back Lunges – Take a big step backward, and stop when your back knee is almost touching the floor. Slowly move forward, and repeat with the opposite leg. That is one repetition.

Third Workout:

  • Lateral Jumps
  • Bicycle Crunches
  • Burpees
  • Inchworms
  • Push Ups
  • Bear Crawls
  • Side Plank

*10 Reps Of Every Exercise, Rest 30 seconds, Repeat AMRAP

This list of 7 exercises should be repeated for 10 repetitions each, before immediately moving on to the next exercise. After all 7 are completed, rest for 30 seconds, and then continue, completing as many rounds as possible.

Lateral Jumps – With both feet together, jump from one side to the other, as fast as possible.

Bicycle Crunches – With both hands behind your head and lying flat on your back, bring one knee to your chest, and meet it with the opposite elbow. Alternate legs, and be careful to not pull to hard on your neck.

Inchworms – From a stand, keeping your legs straight, touch your fingers to the ground. Slowly lower the torso toward the floor and move your hands forward. Once in a push-up position, bring your feet to meet your hands with small steps. Repeat.

Bear Crawls – With a wide base, start in the push up position. Bring one foot and the opposite hand forward. Repeat on the other side and continue crawling.

Side Plank – Place one elbow and forearm to your side on the floor. Bring your body into a straight line so all your weight is supported on your feet and forearm. Engage your core and maintain this position for as long as possible. Repeat on the other side.

Since many people believe that they need a gym, lots of fancy equipment, the latest in tech gear, and every tracking app known to man, it’s important to look at how simple working out truly can be. If you’ve ever had to travel, you know how important it is to find creative, simple ways to work out. In an age when our time is more crunched than ever, short, simple and functional workouts often lead to the most bang for your buck.

And of course it’s important to not overlook the importance of proper nutrition, which will often times lead to the much sought after “six pack” much more than 10,000 sit ups will. You can work out as hard and long as you want, but if you’re heating a diet high in inflammatory foods, as many North Americans are, you will continue to stay where you are or even lessen your body composition.