I want to gain weight and build muscle.

I currently do not want to make time to go to a gym. I have a barbell. I do not have a bench. I have received instructions on form at a gym.

For the past two months I have been doing a few things at random (albeit consistently so) and therefore I really want to follow a routine now.

I mostly have been doing:

  • Military Press
  • Rows
  • Deadlift
  • Front Squats
  • Explosive Push Ups

Can somebody recommend to me a routine that would work within those limitations?

  • Your exercise selection is not perfect but fine if you don't have any money at all. However, that's not important. Important is how you plan to increase your weight on those exercises and your nutrition. You won't build muscle by doing the same every day without adding significant weight and eating a lot. That means you are kind if asking the wrong question here.
    – Raditz_35
    Sep 12, 2019 at 4:48
  • @Raditz_35z Thank you. I have already significantly increased my food consumption. Good, protein rich food, too. I would really like to know how to compartmentalize the exercises I am already doing into a 3 to 4 day a week program then.
    – Benjamin
    Sep 12, 2019 at 7:31

3 Answers 3


Here are a list of exercises you can do for each muscle group:

Chest- floor press, chest press flys(take two weights, press them together with your palms, and raise your arms out in front of you 90 degrees. Use your chest to keep the weights together and raise them)

Quads- squats, front squats, barbell lunges

Hams -deadlift, hack lift

Glutes -deadlift, hack lift, glute bridge

Calves-if you have a step or 2x4 you can do calf raises

Tibia-same as above, if you have a step you can do raises

Shoulder -military press

Biceps- barbell curl, drag curl

Triceps-barbell kickback, close grip floor press(might be hard to kick off)

Forearms -reverse curl, wrist curls, reverse wrist curls, farmers walks

Back-hack lift, rows(can change grip, grip width, angle, etc..), t bar rows(if you have a rope), one armed rows.

Core(lateral)-farmers walks, suitcase deadlift, offweighted deadlift

Core(rotation)-offweighted floor press (alternate sides), landmine

Core (upper and lower abs)- barbell rollout, weighted floor crunches(use the weight plate)

The only thing you can't do is vertical pulling motions, such as pull ups or lat pulldown, which can be solved by getting a pull up bar or even using one at a local park. A high Fence or high wall could be used possibly too.

I'd recommend a 3 day a week workout where you pick 4 exercises with pulling,pushing, posterior chain, and quads. Then pick 2 accessories such as core, arms, forearms, etc


Assuming you are seeking the best return over investment, I would suggest full body workouts. I would also suggest investing in a suspension trainer and/or a pull-up bar. These should be available at a low price.

For each training session select one exercise in each category.

  • Push

    • Military press
    • Push-ups
    • Landmine presses
    • Chair dips
  • Pull

    • Barbell rows
    • Landmine rows
    • Suspension rows
    • Chin ups
    • Pull ups
  • Knee-dominant

    • Front squat
    • Split squat
    • Lunge
    • Reverse lunge
  • Hip-dominant

    • Conventional deadlift
    • RDL
    • Sumo deadlift
    • Barbell glute bridge
    • Barbell hip thrust

These are just the exercise that came from the top of my mind. Certainly there are others which you could use with only a minimal investment or no investment.


Taking a completely different tact from the other answers, I think your exercise selection is excellent. In fact, I'd drop the explosive press-ups and keep the others.

I'd like to point you towards my favourite strength and conditioning author, Dan John.

He talks about a program called "One Lift a Day".

Essentially, and for some reason a lot of people seem to get this wrong, you do one lift a day. On squat day, you squat (or front squat in your case). On press day, you press. On row day, you row. On deadlift day... you should get the idea by now.

You want to gain weight and put on muscle? Dan John talks about the biggest transformation he ever underwent when training with Dick Notmeyer.

Actually, I'm a fairly good example of actual bulking. In a four-month period, without steroids (always a caveat), I put on forty pounds, going from 162 to 202. What's interesting about my four-month, forty-pound gain was what I was doing before I started to gain size. Why? Well, it's probably what you're doing now.

At a bodyweight of 162 pounds, I benched heavy and hard nearly every day. At a bodyweight of 162 pounds, I did lat pulldowns, a variety of curls, lots of ab work, and I moved from machine to machine quickly. Then I met Dick Notmeyer and the scale began to move.

At Dick's place, there was a bar on the floor and a squat rack. Three days a week I walked over to the bar on the floor and moved it overhead a bunch of different ways. Two days a week I squatted the bar.

(quote taken from his article Mass Made Simple on T-Nation)

For yourself, if you don't have access to a bench for bench pressing, either substitute in the overhead press, or potentially the floor press (honestly, I'd just stick with the overhead press, I don't really get the bench press, but then I don't train for powerlifting, and never in life have I had to lay on my back on a bench and press a weight over my chest).

Don't over complicate things. Your exercise selection is good, get strong in those exercises, eat well, and you should easily be able to put on a decent amount of mass.

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