Minimal Equipment Workouts

You don’t need to spend money on a gym membership or any fancy fitness gear to get in shape. You can actually get great workouts with no equipment at all.  The only thing you need to get fit is the desire to better yourself and the ability to take action.  If you are looking to get some equipment, however, the best thing you could buy (or build) is a standard pull-up bar.

Nothin’ but Bar

You could seriously train every muscle in your upper-body just by doing pull-upsmuscle-ups and dips on a straight bar – no other equipment is needed.  As for your legs, you don’t even need a bar!  Just doing lots of squats and lunges will make them strong and toned.  If you decide to up the ante, pistol squats hit every part of your lower body as well as your core muscles.  And if those get too easy for you, try doing pistol squats standing on a pull-up bar.

I don’t typically share specific workout routines, but today is an exception!  Here are three simple workouts that you can do with nothing but a pull-up bar:

The Trifecta

This workout is based on a pyramid training scheme and it will work every single muscle in your body – including your heart!  Start by performing one squat, then immediately grab an overhead bar and do one pull-up, then drop down and do a push-up.  Next do two squats, two pull-ups and two push-ups.  Continue to add one rep to each exercise until you fail to get through the circuit. Then start taking one rep away and work your way back down. Try to keep your rest time to a minimum.  If you’re not strong enough to do push-ups or pull-ups, feel free to substitute knee push-ups and Australian pull-ups in their place.

Core Crusher

Don’t be fooled by the name – though the emphasis of this workout is on the abs, obliques and lower back, it hits every muscle in your body!

First warm up by holding a plank for one minute. The rest of the workout consists of ten hanging leg raises (or hanging knee raises), ten back bridges (perform each back bridge with a two second hold at the top), then a 30 second side plank hold on each side. Try to get through this workout without any breaks (though you may stop to rest as needed).  Feel free to repeat the sequence two or three times.

Area 51

This is an advanced workout that’s not for the faint of heart!  It doesn’t take very long, but you’ll need to be strong to even try this one.  Area 51 starts with one muscle-up on a straight bar. Once you’re over the bar, stay up top and do 30 dips. The next objective is to perform 20 pull-ups – all without coming off the bar.  If you can get through the whole set, you will have performed 51 total reps.  If you can’t do it all in one set, you may take a break in between the dips and the pull-ups and/or spread out the pull-ups into multiple sets.  For the advanced trainee, area 51 can be used as a warm-up.

Watch the video below to see me performing the “Area 51″ workout:

[su_youtube url=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BT4kixG_ml0]

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