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Training with bodyweight is fantastic for building a great ‘strength to weight’ ratio. It allows you to build size and power without becoming bulky and slow and it allows you to become stronger without needing expensive equipment.
The only problem with this plan though is that some areas are undoubtedly easier to train than others when there are no weights involved.
An example of areas that are very difficult are the chest and the back. So how do you train these regions without dumbbells?
Mike Chang from Six Pack Shortcuts has devised one workout to help that uses some pretty original moves you might not have seen anywhere else…
The first exercise is the ‘four second push up’ which is simply a push up performed slowly to improve muscle endurance and to flood it with lactic acid and growth hormones. For most gym goers, regular press ups are simply too easy but going more slowly allows you to add the challenge back in.
Towel pull ups are perhaps misleading. Here you’re not going to be doing pull ups at all but rather you’ll be lying on the floor with your arms outstretched in front of you. Grab one end of a towel in each hand and pull the towel taut with your arms pulling in each direction.
Now, pull the towel in towards your face. As you do, raise your chest up so that you’re working your lower back. Push back out and lower your upper back and then repeat. These are like Supermans but with the added benefit that comes from keeping the towel taut.
The next exercise is the jumping burpee. A burpee is normally a press up followed immediately by a star jump. This is a great move as the press up trains the chest while the fact you’re jumping up and down so much means you’ll be making the movement much more compound and as such, much more anabolic.
The result will be that you build muscle faster overall. Meanwhile, you’ll be really launching yourself up in the air with those burpees which is the perfect antidote to the slow press ups!
Prone Cobras are similar to towel pull ups. Here you’ll be lying on your front again and raising your back as you move your arms. This time, the hands start together out in front of you and then move backwards out by your sides as you bring your chest up off the ground.
Once you’ve completed this routine once, you should already be feeling the benefits. But it’s a long way from over! Now you’re going to take a minute break and then perform the entire routine again.
See how many laps you can perform and you should notice that your chest and back start to really show the signs of a heavy workout.
And not a piece of iron anywhere in sight! Who says that you need to lift heavy to get impressive results?