Body weight workouts get a bad rap. In a bodybuilding world of “lift more weight” or “do more reps” we forget that body weight training can totally take your physique to the next level simply by hitting your muscles in a way that weights can’t.

Not only do they improve ‘relative strength’ but there’s just something about moving your body through space as opposed to moving weights that scream intensity.

The problem with body weight exercise is that most people don’t know how to program them into their session properly, or they don’t know how to create a body weight-only workout when they are away from the weights or can’t make it to the gym.

There’s a few things you can do to make sure you’re getting the most out of including body weight exercises into your training program.

In your weight training workouts – Do a couple burn out sets at the end of your session. So, for example if it’s international chest day bang out a few sets of push ups to failure. This will tax your muscle fibers and will increase the intensity of the session just by going all out in the last 5 minutes.

If you don’t have access to weights – some days, you can’t get to the weights. I get it. Family stuff, work, or other priorities can get in the way. You know by now it’s no excuse to skip a workout. Here’s what you do…

  1. Snag yourself a Gym Boss Timer. You can set this thing for intervals which will get you the most out of your body weight workouts. We use this thing religiously at my gym and I always keep on in my gym bag which just adds to my travel training arsenal. When doing body weight exercises you’re good at, you can only increase the intensity a few different ways. Keeping the break time down is one of them (along with doing more reps, slowing down rep speed, and adding weight to your body like a weighted vest or chains).
  2. Go get a suspension trainer. This is probably one of the best investments you can make if you’re serious about training. It is so versatile and gives you more options for body weight work by changing training angles, increasing core activation, and allows you the ability to attach to portable sleds/tire sleds, etc to give you another dynamic to your training. Buy a good one like a Jungle Gym XT and it will last you a lifetime.
  3. Figure out how you’re going to design your session. For me, I typically pick 2 body parts to work (remember, I like 2-boy part bodybuilding splits – the same goes for my workouts it they’re strictly body weight sessions). So, for example…I usually train Chest/Biceps, Back/Triceps, and Legs/Shoudlers. If I see I’m going to miss a Back/Tris day because of family stuff, workload, etc I will do a Back/Tris workout and design it accordingly.
    • Here’s one torn right from my 4-Week Beast Mode Project program that has helped me maintain strength and muscle while leaning out:
      • Choose exercises for the body parts you want to work and list them out, larger muscle group first. Check out the links below for ‘how to’ videos on YouTube…and be sure to SUBSCRIBE!
        1. Burpee with Pull Up (I always start with a conditioning exercise in combination with the first major muscle group to get the heart rate up immediately).
        2. Suspension Row
        3. Suspension Power Pull
        4. Superman
        5. Suspension Triceps Extension
        6. Close Grip Push Up
        7. Suspension Pike
      • Set your Gym Boss Timer for Work (20 sec) to Rest (10 sec) Ratio Rounds (28 Rounds for Beginner = 4 cycle sets of the above circuit, 56 rounds for Advanced = 8 cycled sets of the above circuit)
        [convertplayer id=”lJqXnvzdS”]
      • Blow through the workout with as much intensity as possible doing as many reps as you can in each 20 second work interval.

Trust me when I say this workout is a killer. It’s all body weight, but the combination of your 10 second rest periods, and hitting only 2 muscle groups makes for a crazy session.

Try this out, and if you want a full program that incorporates this type of training and heavy lifts, check out this 4-Week, Hybrid Bodybuilding Program. (Only do it if you’re ready to take your workouts to the next level.)


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