Exercise Plans (without a gym)

Two common barriers for people who want to exercise and get in shape are a lack of time and money needed for fitness.

Who has the time to go to the gym, or buy expensive equipment, or take long bike rides?

Well, if those are the things stopping you, you’re in luck.

It takes no equipment to get a great workout and get in shape, and with one or two pieces of simple equipment, you can turn that great workout into a fantastic one, you magnificent beast, you.

And with little or no equipment required for a fantastic workout, you can do it at home, or wherever you are. Even if you’re in solitary confinement.

It’s hard not to find time for this type of workout — you can do it while watching TV, for goodness sake!

The Pros and Cons of Bodyweight Exercises

Using just your bodyweight, you can do a large number of challenging exercises.  If you add just one or two pieces of equipment: a dumbbell, a kettlebell, a jump rope, a medicine ball, or a chinup bar, for example, you can increase the challenge even more.

Weekly Workout Schedule

Your weekly workout schedule differs depending on your goals: If you want to lose weight, more emphasis needs to be put on cardio, as it burns more calories than resistance training. If you are happy with your weight and mainly want to build muscle, the emphasis should be put on resistance training:

Day For Weight Loss For Building Muscle
Monday Beginner Workout Beginner Workout
Tuesday Cardio, 30 – 60 Minutes Cardio, 30 – 60 Minutes
Wednesday Cardio, 30 – 60 Minutes Beginner Workout
Thursday Beginner Workout Cardio, 30 – 60 Minutes
Friday Cardio, 30 – 60 Minutes Beginner Workout
Saturday Rest Rest
Sunday Rest Rest

How to do this workout: do a bit of a warmup — jumping jacks, jump rope, or just jogging in place for a few minutes will get your heart rate going. Then do the exercises in order, for 30 seconds to two minutes (depending on what kind of shape you’re in), with as little rest in between as possible. If you’re new to exercise, feel free to rest fully between exercises, but if you’re in decent shape, doing them one after another is a great workout. You’ll probably have to stop to catch your breath a few times — it’s a tough workout!

Chest / Triceps 3 sets of push-ups, as many as you can do, with 60 seconds rest between sets
Back / Biceps 3 sets of pull-ups, as many as you can do, with 60 seconds rest between sets
Legs Three sets of lunges, as many as you can do, with 60 seconds rest between sets.
Legs (optional) Three sets of hamstring curls, 6 – 12 repetitions, with 60 seconds rest between sets

Abs Three sets of crunches, 6-12 repetitions, with 60 seconds rest between sets