A resistance training workout you can do with limited equipment

June 16th, 2017 by

Yesterday I posted a bike-based interval workout perfect for situations when you find yourself in a time pinch and/or while traveling and having to rely on a hotel gym with limited equipment. Today, I want to highlight a resistance training workout you can fall back on when you find yourself in less than ideal situations in terms of equipment availability and time constraints.

Equipment Needed

▪️0-90 Adjustable Bench
▪️Your Body Weight

Time Required

▪️about 30 minutes

The Routine

A1. Dumbbell Press Descending Elevator 4 sets of 10-12 reps

▪️Set 1: Seated Dumbbell Press (bench upright)
▪️Set 2: High Incline Dumbbell Press (about 60 degrees)
▪️Set 3: 45-Degree Incline Dumbbell Press
▪️Set 4: Flat Dumbbell Press

A2. Pick ONE of The Following for 4 Sets of 10-12 Reps Each Leg:

▪️Goblet Reverse Lunges
▪️Goblet Bulgarian Squats
▪️Goblet Step Ups

A3. Pick ONE of The Following for 4 Sets of 10-12 reps:

▪️Dead Stop Dumbbell Rows
▪️Chest-Supported Incline Dumbbell Rows
▪️One-Arm Dumbbell Rows

A4. Pick ONE of The Following for 4 Sets of 10-12 reps:

▪️Single-Leg Hip Thrusts
▪️Romanian Deadlifts w Dumbbells
▪️Split Stance Hip Hinge


▪️Rest about 30 seconds between exercises (take NO rest between sides of single arm/leg exercises)
▪️On the dumbbell pressing elevator, the goal is to match the number of reps you got on the prior set. Each set places you at a mechanical advantage as the angle of the bench decreases (more involvement of the chest as you go down). So, if you got 12 reps with 30 lb. bells on the first set of seated dumbbell presses (and that should be a hard 12 reps), the goal is to get 12 on subsequent sets.
▪️On the 4th set of each exercise, go to (or very close) to muscular failure and do AMRAP (as many reps as possible)

16 total sets and you are out…quick and dirty. You hardly even have to move…you can basically situate yourself around the bench and you won’t risk losing a piece of equipment. The nice thing about this little routine is that it address all major muscle groups and the exercises are non-competing. The rest periods are short, but you are going to get plenty of recovery in between exercises involving the same muscle groups due to the 4 exercise circuit. If you have more time, you could throw in 4-5 sets of the core work of your choice at the end.

Again, this routine should be used as a “stop gap” when traveling, in a time crunch, or you don’t have access to the facilities and equipment needed to carry out your normal training program. This is not meant to be a long-term solution or a substitute for your normal training.