Home Workout Using Dumbells
If you work a desk job, you spend an average of eight hours a day at your computer. Sitting all day has adverse health effects on your body. It is essential to stretch your legs once in a while. Ideally, you could go for a walk or run multiple times a week, depending on your preference.
But walking or running is not going to give you a great look. One of the best ways to accomplish this and boost your confidence along the way is to do strength training.
Due to covid-19, in my country, most fitness clubs have been closed for months now. Therefore, I bought myself some equipment to stay fit. In this article, I’ll give you an insight into my training schedule. It consists of seven simple exercises.
For a few hundred euros, you can cancel your fitness subscription for good. And that without sacrificing quality or putting yourself at risk for the coronavirus.
I’ve explained the seven exercises below. You can start with just your body weight. When you progress, you’ll add more and more weight. To help you calculate the weight you need, you can use a website strength level. I’ll give you an overview of how fast you should progress to avoid an injury.
A beginner is someone who has been lifting for less than six months, for three days a week.
An intermediate lifter is someone who has been lifting for less than two years.
An advanced lifter is someone who has been lifting for more than two years.
While you can significantly progress faster by adding more training days to your schedule, the risk of an injury will also increase. It’s better to create a sustainable habit instead of risking it all. Combining weightlifting with a different sport will be better for your health than doing the same thing six days a week.
Without resting, your muscles just do not have enough time to recover. This can be countered by steroids and other products that speed up recovery, with all the negative consequences this entails. Professional athletes, target different muscle groups every day, allowing them to recover.
Add more weights over time, but first, try variations of the same exercise. Variations will make it harder for your body to get used to training. You will make healthier progress. Prevent injuries. An injury can undo all the progress you have made in months.
Don’t focus on the weights. Focus on the effort.
When you decide that you want to add weight, get adjustable dumbells. They are considerably cheaper. Purchasing every possible combination of dumbells is expensive. Please do not make the mistake of buying large plates (e.g. bumper plates), as they will get in the way during exercises. They are only helpful for barbell exercises.
A lunge is an exercise that helps strengthen your lower body. Lunges target muscle groups like the quadriceps, hamstrings, glutes and calves. This exercise will improve your posture and boost your metabolism.
The first time you do this exercise, you won’t need any weights to feel the burn. Focus on the execution and good form within a period of 45 to 60 seconds. Don’t focus on repetitions. Focus on your muscle fatigue. Stop when you can’t perform a repetition with good form.
Slowly start to add weights over the weeks that you progress. Do not rush the process. Focus on execution. For a male of 85kg, you only need up to 10kg dumbells as a beginner. To keep things interesting, you can perform variations like side lunges, walking lunges and lunges with a torso twist. These variations hit the muscle groups a bit different, which allows for a safer progression.
The shoulder press is hands down the best practice for your shoulders and upper back. On top of that, the shoulder press is fun. It targets muscles like your shoulders, deltoids, triceps, trapezius and pecs. This exercise will significantly improve your strength and appearance.
Performing the shoulder press with too much weight will feel uncomfortable. Holding too much weight in your hands is the fastest way to reach the hospital. Focus on a controlled movement and form. Try to repeat this exercise about 12 times in a period of 45 to 60 seconds. Please focus on the time under tension, not on the repetitions themselves. Once you feel you can’t get those weights up any longer, you should finish your set.
Without any weights, this exercise won’t feel right. For a male of 85kg, you need up to 16kg dumbells as a beginner. Doing them with 12 to 14 kilograms can make a world of difference, allowing you to do more repetitions. Once you get comfortable doing them seated, try to perform those repetitions standing. Doing an exercise in a standing position engages your core, allowing for a more intense workout.
The squat is one of the very few exercises that can correct your body position. Training the lower body can increase your testosterone levels and blood flow. It’s the most critical exercise regardless of your gender. The squat will make the following muscles work: quadriceps, hamstrings, calves, abs and your butt.
You don’t need equipment to get started with squats. You can increase the number of repetitions until you can’t do any more. Try to do as many as you can in 45–60 seconds. It’s essential to go as low as you possibly can without falling. In the beginning, you can use a chair or a box to avoid losing your balance. Once you feel you can do them with ease, start to use weights alongside your body.
Maintaining a straight back throughout the exercise is undoubtedly the biggest challenge in a squat. Starting with low weight and correcting your posture is a must. A male of 85kg should be able to perform a 12kg dumbell squat as a beginner. Even without weights, the results you will see after doing this exercise for months are incredible.
After doing some exercises while standing up, you appreciate those exercises where you can lay down. The bench press is the preferred exercise of many professional weight lifters, even though it’s not the most effective exercise. The bench press doesn’t stimulate muscle growth that much compared to squats. The bench press mainly targets your pectoralis major, anterior deltoids and triceps. It’s great if you want to build a bigger chest.
Without weights, you can perform push-ups to get similar results. Try to do as many push-ups as you can in 45–60 seconds. Try to squeeze your chest muscles as much as you can during the whole exercise. If you can’t feel and squeeze your chest during the workout, you’re doing it wrong. Instead, you are probably training your triceps or a different muscle instead. Once you get comfortable doing push-ups, get started with dumbells.
You don’t need a bench to get started. You can perform a dumbell press on the floor, which also allows locking your arms in a more safe position. A male of 85kg, of beginner level, should be able to push 19kg dumbells in the air at least once. While you can progress fast with this exercise, try to keep your progress in line with the other exercises. Having “only” chest muscles is not attractive.
Once you have been doing this exercise for a few months, you might want to invest in a good bench. A good bench will allow you to tilt, which allows for more variation. The bench will allow you to target different muscles. Performing this exercise on a bench increases your range of motion.
Have you ever had problems doing daily activities like carrying grocery bags? Well, this exercise can solve this. The dumbell row is all about strengthening your back muscles. It affects your core, shoulders and your upper arms, making it a great compound exercise.
You can’t do this exercise effectively without weights. You could replace the dumbells with a grocery bag, though, so you don’t have a reason for skipping this exercise. This exercise will only give you good results if you perform it correctly. Keep your chest still, pull and squeeze your shoulder and back muscles on top. Lower the dumbell slowly with controlled movement until your arm fully extends.
A beginner of my weight (85kg) should lift 20kg at least once. Many beginners struggle with this kind of weight, though, because they lack grip strength. Your grip strength will improve over time, so don’t worry. You don’t need gloves. Lower the weight and keep those muscles under tension for at least 45 seconds in one set.
Bicep curls are not useless. They are the most iconic exercise of all time, although they are an isolation exercise. There is a good reason why I’ve included them in this workout. You can do bicep curls and tricep extensions in a superset.
Supersets are super effective, as your arm will be under tension for an extended amount of time. Combining the two exercises has a fantastic effect on building arm muscle.
Besides training your biceps, the bicep curl will also train your lower arm. Try to do as many repetitions as you can in a controlled way. Standing up whilst doing this exercise will also engage your core.
Dumbell curls shouldn’t be performed with large weights, as the bicep is a tiny muscle. A beginner of 85kg with no lifting experience should be able to curl with 8kg dumbells.
During the whole year, one of the most visible muscles is the tricep. It’s a much larger muscle compared to its little brother, the bicep. There is an excellent variety of tricep exercises you could do, but this allows you to target the triceps individually.
Someone of 85kg, a beginner, should be able to extend his arm with 8kg dumbells. It’s a larger and more visible muscle than the bicep. The size of this muscle also translates into appearance. Training the tricep will increase the size of your arms significantly.
This exercise could be done whilst laying down or standing. Keep the weight behind your two shoulder blades. Raise the weight until your arm extends completely. Move the weight down slowly, and repeat.
Wrap up and final tips
It’s sufficient to do three sets of every exercise described above to get started with weight lifting. Typically, you can do this schedule in about 45 minutes of your time. You don’t need a lot of material to get started. It is frustrating that the gyms are closed, but this doesn’t mean you can’t do the exercises at home.
The fitness industry loves to tell us we need the help of a professional to get started. You don’t need one at the beginning. There is plenty of material available on YouTube that shows you how to perform these exercises correctly. Doing the exercises will give you a remarkable physique. At least, if you do them for a few months, 3 or 4 times a week.
Stay away from large weights, unless you’ve been weight lifting for a long time. A professional lifter puts a lot of stress on their body, so it is wise for them to train with supervision. At this level, the smallest mistake can cause permanent damage.
Nutrition supplements like protein powder can aid a faster recovery, but so does eating healthy and drinking 1.5–2l water a day.