You can get jacked anywhere & anytime if you put your mind into, whether is in a middle of fucking nowhere, in a barren desert, in a prison cell, in somewhere in Alice’s wonderland, or in your room. Because getting jacked, sexy and strong is all about mental.
So what? What if your gym closed?
We don’t need a gym or some steel to bang our muscles hard.
In fact, everything we need is improvise, adapt, overcome.
Yeah, you’ve heard it. And you can always build a jacked, more chiseled and muscular physique anytime at home or even in your room.
Few things you need are:
- Your own bodyweight.
- Pairs of dumbbells or resistance bands.
- Some calisthenics equipments.
And luckily for you, these are cheap as hell.
Hell, if you are smart, you can have anything in favor within a budget of $50, while a bang-ass monthly membership in your favorite Gold Gym cost like $99+.
“Per favore, I want to get jacked without spending much!”
Si! And you always can.
Tip 1 For Easy Budget Training: Bodyweight Training
The merits of bodyweight training are using your “bodyweight” as a resistance for your physical performance in any situations conveniently yet still gaining quite amount of strength, muscle and athleticism.
The fundamental movements of bodyweight training are push-ups, pull-ups, body squats, dips, leg raises. In the beginning, these are very efficient moves must be mastered.
In fact, best bang for bucks training for beginners is just about calisthenics & bodyweight training.
Listen, I’ve been training with my own flesh & meat for 3+ years.
And the results always impressed me.
These are what smart bodyweight training can do for you:
- Increased relative strength.
- Increased functional strength.
- Develop the your baseline athleticism to at least above-average.
- The capacity to master the movements of your body.
- Build more muscle fast.
- Build more endurance fast.
- And dirt-cheap, convenient for both economic & environment!
However, there are undoubtedly limitations with this aspects of training.
Due to your own body as resistance is sub-maximal resistance, when you’ve mastered the basic bodyweight exercises, gained baseline strength & muscles. You will not make further progress by following the typical bodybuilding training notions.
Hence, you will not build more massive muscles than one who train with pounds of weights, if you use only your body weight as resistance.
For that reason, you have to increase the challenges of your program.
Calisthenics itself is more challenging, but it also more fun.
Calisthenics requires improvisation, adaptation and great willpower to overcome excuses and challenges.
How To Train Bodyweight Effectively
Like I said, family: calisthenics itself is challenging yet fun, and it requires lot of mental strength to getting jacked with it.
And like weight training, to train effectively – increase the challenges & use progressive overload.
As you can always elevate the challenges by:
- Increase volume & intensity by training high-reps ranges and higher frequency: if you only use your bodyweight, you cannot do one variation of push-up, squat, pull-up all the time for sets of 2×20, 3×15, 4×10, 5×5, … You must do higher reps and therefore more sets with lower resting period between sets. For instance: 30-50 reps of push-ups for 5-10 sets. And just like how bodybuilders train their parts using lightweight, this allows your body to activate more hypertrophy; allows your body to build more densed muscle and muscular endurance gains.
- Build more strength using harder variations: Now of course, if you only train with the tip above, you will be bored & the muscle gains are not very fast due to it mostly develops the type-I muscle fibres. If you want to get much more stronger, you have to put tensions in your type-II muscle fibres (which is a more powerful muscle type). You do this by changing the angles, the form of your exercises to be more challenging, or targeting the weaker muscle groups contracted by that exercise, do this you will get stronger.
- You can use extra weights for your training: Using your own body-weight is only sub-maximal which is not enough resistance for more growth when your basic training isn’t challenging anymore. Therefore, you should consider adding weights. If I decide to stick to one variation, I gotta prepare a heavy weighted vest with some sand weights with it, or a heavy chain, some weight plates with a belt; and so should you.
- Train 5-7 times/week: Unlike bodybuilding & weightlifting, you can train 3-4 days a week if you put lots of resistance & tension in your regiments with heavier weights. Doing bodyweight exercises might need you to train more frequently within colossal amount of repititions in order to stimulate more muscle growth. I train 6 times a week with this form of training if I don’t try anything crazier with it.
- Nutrition: if you want to get big, eat big – eat caloric surplus; contrarily, to get ripped & lose fat, eat caloric deficit. Eat clean foods, fat, carbs, proteins. No arguing in this zone, ok?
- Recovery: maximizes it by 7-9 hours of high quality sleep, increase fucking testosterone, 1 gallon of water everyday, eat enough, relax & rest enough, myofascial release, … come on guys, you know the rules! Take PEDs if you can consider your usages.
Extra Bodyweight Training Techniques
Fortunately my friends, bodyweight/calisthenics workout doesn’t stop at those technique above. There are lots of extra techniques to implement to accelerate your performance.
And one of the techniques is isometrics training, this will smash through your weaknesses and allow you develop more power & strength.
So what are you going to do are: holding statically in a contracted position of the exercise for an amount of time; for instance, 6-15 seconds.
Hence, this does allow your central nervous system to recruit more muscle fibers, when the big muscles are fatigue. Therefore breaking through the weak points & gaining more strength.
For this technique is a quite interesting yet very amazing subject, I’ll make a separate post about isometrics training one day.
Mostly every bodybuilder trains in a way that makes their contracting muscles under high pressure for a quite period of time.
And what this does is making your muscle breakdown more, so that you can stimulate more growth during rest.
So how you can do it is: try not to lock-out your muscle entirely during an exercise; or you can perform slower-tempo during contraction. For examples: doing pull ups without locked scapular and lats or doing push-ups in slow reps.
Trust me, this thing is a pain in the ass.
Yet if you can do it, your muscle will sore a lot, though allows it to grow more; no pains no damn gains.
Gymnastic Rings Training
Fuck me on this one.
Training in a gymnastic rings is like calisthenics on steroids (don’t mean it literally).
So let’s say if calisthenics is easy for you, hmmmm? How about doing your shit on the gymnastic rings.
Nevertheless, the gymnastic rings has a pretty uncomfortable amount of instability. So, doing push-ups, pull-ups, dips or even squats & abs exercises on rings; that annoying instability makes your exercise 10x harder than you ever imagine, thus allows your body to exert more muscle.
Also, you can always perform your exercise on more depths, when your push-ups doing on the rings, it allows your chest to go deeper; allows your chest to contract more muscle groups.
And this increases more strength, more muscle growth & ability to recruit more muscle overall. Trust me, it is a tough shit.
I recall the first time I train dips on the rings. But before that, my dips on a static bar barely touch 5-7 reps in a set; and doing this shit on ring is much more harder, the first time I wasn’t able to get one full rep down.
However, until I can do 7-8 reps of dips on the rings; you can bet I can do lot more on the bars. In fact, I can do 20+ reps on a bar easily like eating cake.
It is also affordable, convenient and portable; you can hang it anywhere you one in your home, like on the pull up bar on your doorframe.
That being so, a pair of rings is not a should, it is a MUST!
Tip 2 For Budget Training: Resistance Band Training
I love training on resistance band, especially during the lockdown time like this with little-to-no gyms are opened.
They are pretty affordable too, a 4-sized set of high quality, elastic and durable resistance bands at their full stretches can causes up to 310lbs resistance; and they cost like $30 – $50.
On the other hands, 300lbs set of iron weight plates can shoot up to $250 – $500 (you can get them cheaper on Craiglists, depends).
Hence, it is also a considerable temporary substitute for weight, since training in resistance bands alone can make you huge and strong like you can do with weights.
Your Lifts And Muscle Will Thank You
For every main lifts you can do on weights or a barbell: bench press, squat, military press, dead lift, bent rows, curls.
Here’s a good news: You can do them on resistance bands too.
And there are more good news, when you can do these lifts pretty well on bands, you will have a massive surge on strengths of these lifts as well, your muscles still can grow a lot like when you train them on weights.
This is because resistance bands also have instability, so struggling your lifts on the bands is a great way to increase muscle exertion, therefore more growth more strength gains.
What, you can’t do bench press with the bands?
Then do floor bench, it’s fun, believe me. And do heavy floor benches can skyrocket your strength.
I found that back then my bench initially trained with barbell in one rep max was 165 pounds.
And then I trained floor bench with bands rigorously for 12 weeks, I coul lift green, purpose, black bands at the same time for 5 reps (that’s 265lbs if fully stretched); when I got back to weight training, I benched solid two-fucking-plates.
Consensus: it works greatly.
Also, my chest got bigger and more chiseled.
I also do dead lift, rows, curls, shoulder press on the bands; this helps me correcting my form, technique and building stronger arms, grips & backs also.
Incorporating Resistance Bands With Bodyweight Training
In an addition of resistance bands to your badass calisthenics regiments will lead into an unexpected prima facie. Which is mean you will gain lots of benefits by doing it.
So you can make your workout much more strenuous and challenging.
So can also break through your weak points during bodyweight training.
For most guys who ought to train for flashy, sexy bodyweight feats like muscle ups, front levers, one arm pushes-ups/pull-ups; these resistance bands are unbelievably helpful.
I didn’t get straight on the bar and do one clean-ass pull up, it was hard at the beginning, like goddammit.
However until I implemented resistance band pull-ups to make my training, I blasted through the weak points in few weeks. And the first clean pull up was purely ecstatic.
Likewise, you can try to make your push-ups or squats harder with pressure on the bands.
It is likely that you can do whatever the fuck you want with resistance bands in bodyweight training to perform and progress better if you are smart about that.
Equipment For Budget Home Training
Having a gregarious home gym might be great, but not anyone can afford it.
Yet all you need is just few things for your home training, it should not cost that much.
For a budget home gym equipment may cost you only $99 – $199, then you can use it for lifetime.
In fact, all of my stuffs cost me roughly 129$:
- Wooden gymnastic rings: 35$
- Multi-grip pull ups bar: roughly 27$
- A set of resistance bands (green, purple, black, red): 30$
- 12 pounds weighted vest: roughly 33$
And that’s enough for my needs.
For you, it depends on your own preferences, you might not need much or you like to have some extras like belts, straps, weight plates or dumbbells.
That’s fine, but always ensure to have these following: gymnastic rings, a pull up bar on doorframe, resistance bands.
Just remember that you’ll need what are minimally enough.
So What Now?
Program your training, set up your meal plans, get enough sleep & water, get your shits and groceries together & start a training week.
To program your training routines, you can always choose to:
- Option 1: 6 days of training/week: Mon, Wed, Fri: legs + shoulders; Tues, Thurs, Sat: back + chest; Sunday rest. For each session with only 2-4 exercises at high intensity & volumes. This kind of training frequency will stimulate as much muscle growth as possible.
- Option 2: 3-4 days of full body training with 3-5 exercises that target primary muscle groups around the body.
- Each workout session should takes no longer than 60 minutes for time efficiency, sometimes 20-30 minutes is enough.
And that’s all.
You can basically do all of this to maintain your muscle gains or still building some muscles.
Remember that you can train anywhere anytime you want, getting jacked is all mental with consistent efforts put on.
Any kind of physical training requires consistency, you can’t just get Superman-up within few weeks; so give yourself at least 2-3 months and see the progress.
In a matter of few months, you will expect a decent gains and also a great boost in confidence & discipline.
So, anything else?
If nothing else, call it a day for now. I’ll see you soon next time,