The Best Bodyweight Workout You've Never Heard Of
Too often people disregard bodyweight workouts because it looks too easy or too simple.
They're only half wrong. (Or is it half right?)
While the principles of a bodyweight routine are simple, the effort and intensity is anything but easy.
In this video we tackle the question: Do you really need to workout at a gym to get a lean, athletic body?
(SPOILER ALERT: Nope.)
And we'll share the results of our own no-gym workout regiment.
Ghosts of guts past
For a little bit of background on Brandon’s fitness story, let’s rewind about 5 years to when he weighed almost 250 lbs. No joke.
From there he embarked on his first transformation and dropped down to an athletic 200 lbs. While Brandon looked like a male fitness model, life was miserable.
Maintaining the mass and build of this body required eating 6-7 meals a day, consuming foods he didn’t like, doing tons of weightlifting (no pun intended), and just spending too much time at the gym doing cardio that he didn’t enjoy.
Yes, he got some pretty decent results, but since starting to jump rope and incorporating bodyweight exercises, Brandon has taken his physique to a whole new level.
When Dan weighed 260 lbs, he embarked on his first transformation by lifting a ton of weights and eating in a calorie deficit to drop fat and achieve his fitness goals.
Both Brandon and Dan continued to utilize weight lifting to maintain their lean physiques, but it didn’t stay that way for long.
Old effort = Old results
Nowadays, Brandon is walking around at about 6 foot 2 inches and 185 lbs.
This was achieved through a combination of weightlifting and jump rope. Four months ago, we released a video where we decided to give up hitting the gym, and just focus on jumping rope to answer the question:
Can we maintain the the same lean muscle physiques without lifting weights?
What we found out is super exciting.
Jump your way to weight loss
Before the four month experiment, Brandon was hitting the gym 3-4 times a week in order to reach his desired results.
Since jumping rope and incorporating bodyweight exercises exclusively, he’s been able to not only maintain his Jump Rope Dude physique, but he’s gotten even more shredded in the process.
For Dan, he lifted weights in combination with jumping rope for YEARS in order to obtain his ideal body. After going cold turkey and cutting out the gym for a few months, he’s also been able to maintain a lean body while simplifying his life and daily fitness routine.
Before we dig into the specifics of what routines we do now versus what we did before, it’s important to emphasize that we’re in a state of maintenance.
We achieved the physiques we wanted and use jump rope to maintain our results.
If you want to get A LOT bigger, you gotta hit the weights.
But if you’re trying to maintain your current muscle mass and/or burn fat, jump rope will help you do that.
New routine = New body
Brandon’s jump rope transformation has resulted in a more athletic and explosive body.
This is partially due to incorporating boxing into his workout regiment.
However, Brandon hasn't done any gym-based workouts or weight training to maintain muscle mass.
The only thing he's done on a daily basis is:
Basic jump with a regular rope
Interval training with a heavy rope
One day a week, Brandon will go really intense and do at least 200 push-ups (vs 50-100 on other days). Another day of the week, he'll do a heavy back day and do 50 chin-ups or pull-ups. On a third alternating day, Brandon does 10-12 sets of a variety of leg exercises like air squats, jumping lunges, etc.
Here's how that might break down in a given week (in addition to jumping rope):
Monday: Chest (200+ push-ups)
Wednesday: Back (25 chin-ups, 25 pull-ups)
Friday: Legs (4x10 sets of pistol squats, 4x10 sets of jumping lunges, 4x10 sets of squat taps)
This is very similar to our Shredded Ninja program. Click here to learn more about that.
Dan's routine is the king of simple:
Jump rope for 30-40 minutes every day
Hip hop dancing
40-50 pull-ups 3-4x a week
While there's no muscle building associated with dancing, Dan is burning a ton of calories getting his groove on because of the level of intensity. Which is a key element in the equation of eating in a calorie deficit.
On top of this regiment, Dan will casually work in push-ups, but it varies because a big, tight chest makes fluidity while dancing a bit difficult.
Train for the body YOU want
You can follow our routines or anyone else's, but it boils down to training for the type of body you want.
It's super important for you to understand and be confident in your own personal fitness goal.
We want to look like NFL wide receivers or professional soccer players. Lean, muscular, and athletic.
For us, that means not hitting weights at the gym 5 times a week. Rather, it involves burning a high volume of calories by jumping rope and intense bodyweight exercises.
And don't forget to eat enough protein while still maintaining a calorie deficit. :)
Keeping it real
Our bodies continue to respond to a jump rope and bodyweight workout protocol like we never could've imagined.
It is hard work, but it's simple and effective.
Are you able to get and stay shredded with a no-gym workout routine? Absolutely. We're living proof along with all of the awesome people in JRD Nation (get access here).
If your goal is to get the Jump Rope Dude (or Dudette) physique, we recommend checking out our free 4-week challenge or one of our training programs below.