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BenSr 03-08-2013 03:58 PM

Body weight exercises
I'm getting back into the groove this year trying to get myself in shape. I want to be in the best shape of my life when I hit 40 this August...shouldn't be too hard.

I discovered the fab abs workout through my wife in January. It's Mai Lu a core strength workout that's supposed to supplement what one is already doing, but for weaklings like myself it gets pretty intense by itself. You start off with x number of push-ups, sit ups (I do crunches instead because of my back) and plank. It increases a bit each day so you go from I think 5 pushups to 30 by the end of January.

I was about there, then wrenched my shoulder shoveling snow last month. I'm back up to 25 push-ups as my goal by tomorrow. I modified it to do a certain number Monday, add one each day T-S, off Sunday, same number the next Monday as Saturday, repeat each week. If there are no more injuries, I'll be doing 100 on June 22. I'd call that the best shape of my life since I've never done more than 20 in a day before this year. After I reach that point, I plan to add sets of fewer reps with weight on my back while still doing 100 daily without weights.

I'm also doing pull ups and chin ups. I find with my lack of body strength, I can only do 2 and 4 respectively at one time, with increases usually measured in fractions of a pull up.

I need to find some good exercises for the legs. I find lunges helpful, both because sets of them really kick my ass, and being Catholic, they're pretty similar in form to genuflecting :). But I know I'll need to step it up eventually. In the meantime, does anyone know any body weight type exercises that build both strength AND size in the legs? I know I'll eventually need weight, which I can't afford, but I figured I have to start somewhere.

irie feeling 03-08-2013 05:03 PM

Hi Ben. Welcome back!Sounds like a good workout ya got going on, keep it up!
You can do it!

tt3 03-08-2013 05:40 PM

Wall sits and squats.
Good to hear you're still at it, keep it goin'!

BenSr 03-09-2013 02:36 AM


Originally Posted by tt3 (Post 263389)
Wall sits and squats.
Good to hear you're still at it, keep it goin'!

More accurately back at it, although I've been a lot better this year than...ever. Once I get to my goals as far as using my own body weight, I want to add weights. I don't even know what my numbers rreally are as far as things like bench pressing or leg pressing, but I suspect they're somewhere in the bottom 25% of males. I can bitch about it and get nothing done, or I can work toward it, maybe be able to bench press my weight and leg press twice that by age 50?

tt3 03-09-2013 03:36 AM

Pushups can be incredibly insane if you get creative. Try putting your feet up on the couch, try putting your hands closer together, try putting a book under each hand and going deeper. Keep your elbows close to your side and brutalize your tri's.

That's just off the top of my head. You're doing more now than I have been able to do in years. Good on ya!

Don-Dad 03-09-2013 03:59 PM

See if anyone you know has p90x and do the plyo workout.

GlenDelossantos 03-11-2013 10:39 PM

Congrats on your resolve to get into shape. I'm in the same boat. Body weight exercises rule. No point in being able to sling around heavy weight if you can't even control your own body. Plus, it's easier on your joints. I highly recommend the book "Convict Conditioning" for all your body weight exercise needs. There are 6 basic movements with 10 progressions each. You're doing yourself right by doing pushups and pullups.

Pullups are especially great because it forces you to keep your diet in check - you'll never progress if you weigh too much.

There are countless variations for push ups. My favorites are offset push ups because they progress towards being able to do one handed push ups.

For legs, my favorites are the pistol squat and sprinting. I'm just not a fan of high reps so I actually do deadlifts and barbell squats at home (blasphemy, I know).

Here's a cheat sheet for the Convict Conditioning program, but I really recommend you pick up the book as it goes into the exercises more in depth, with a few interesting history lessons sprinkled in.

ministermatt 03-14-2013 01:10 PM

Try these out:

BenSr 03-16-2013 10:46 PM


Originally Posted by GlenDelossantos (Post 263510)
Pullups are especially great because it forces you to keep your diet in check - you'll never progress if you weigh too much.

At 165, I'm not too concerned about weighing too much. In fact, once I'm working well with the weight I'm at, I hope to gain and have more weight to work with. Up to about 190 with low body fat would probably work well with my body.

And update: did 30 push-ups today and managed to squeeze out...don't laugh...a 3rd pull-up.

Hockeyfan 03-17-2013 12:21 AM

165 and you could go up to 190? Dang man. Hope you get what you want. I'm 197 or plus or minus 2 and I'd be fine with 190 too.

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