How You Can Gain Muscle Without Weights

If you want to gain muscle but don’t have access to a gym or weights, then what should you do? Here are four exercises you can do around the house to increase lean muscle.

  1. Push Ups– Push ups are a great upper body exercise that can be modified for beginners or seasoned fitness enthusiasts.
Photo by Karl Solano on
  • Decrease difficulty by: placing knees on floor; standing up and leaning into a wall to do your push up.
  • Increase difficulty by: slowing your push up as you move toward the ground; creating a diamond with your hands while doing push up; elevating your feet (the more elevation, the harder it is).

2. Squats– Squats will increase your lower body strength and endurance.

Photo by Oleg Magni on
  • Decrease the difficulty of a squat by: decreasing the range of motion (don’t squat low); use a chair to sit into and to get up; do a wall squat with slight knee bend and hold.
  • Increase the difficulty by: increasing the range of motion (squat lower); slow down the repetitions; do a wall squat at a lower depth and hold.

3. Planks– Planks are great for increasing musculature and stability in the core (abs and back)

Photo by Li Sun on
  • Decrease the difficulty by: if you start your plank in a push up position, then it may be easier for you to finish on your forearms; do the plank from your knees; decrease the time of your plank
  • Increase the difficulty by: holding the plank longer; tapping your opposite shoulder as you hold the plank; do a side plank; decrease the points of contact by lifting an arm or foot.

4. Lunges– lunges increase lower body strength and endurance like squats, but they also provide balance training.

Photo by Oleg Magni on
  • Decrease the difficulty of a lunge by: putting the knee of the back leg on the ground and holding that position; decreasing the depth of your lunge (don’t go as far down); use something to help you balance as you lunge
  • Increase the difficulty by: increasing the depth of your lunge; do a forward lunge and hold; lunge backward instead of forward; lateral lunge (to the side)

Published by Move With Mullins

I am a NASM certified personal trainer and Physical Education teacher. I enjoy running, lifting weights, yoga, & surfing.

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