Arnold’s “500 Rep” Bodyweight Workout Routine

arnold bodyweight workout

Arnold Schwarzenegger is a big proponent of  bodyweight training.

He makes some great points in his book, “Education of a Bodybuilder”, about using your own bodyweight for resistance, and being able to get into great shape at home, with no need for expensive equipment.

He says that certain exercises – like push ups – can give you the same effect of doing a bench press with a large portion of your bodyweight loaded on to the bar with steel plates. That a handstand push up is like doing an overhead press with your entire bodyweight. That doing an inverted row – using a broomstick and two chairs – is the equivilent of doing bent – over rows with a good percentage of your bodyweight loaded on to the bar.

Full Bodyweight Training Plan for Getting Strong Anywhere


Arnold’s “500 Rep” Bodyweight Workout Routine (from Education of a Bodybuilder)

Done 3-5 times a week

Push-ups x 50 reps
Row between Chairs x 50 reps
Situps x 100 reps
Leg Raise x 100 reps
Bent-over twists x 50 reps
Squats x 50-70 reps
Calf Raises x 50 reps
Chin-ups x 30 reps

Cardio – Jogging and/or Swimming


So you see – NO excuses!

You can get started on getting into shape TODAY – at home, without any expensive equipment.

Education of a Bodybuilder is a great book, and I highly recommend that you read it. In addition to more workout routines like the one above, the book is extremely inspiring. When you read it, you feel inspired, not just to lift heavy weights at the gym, but to work your ass off in whatever goal or endeavor that you may be pursuing.

If you are looking for a simple but powerful home-based bodyweight plan to help you gain muscle, I also recommend you check out Bodyweight MASS from my friend Alain Gonzalez. It’s inspired by workouts like the one above, and it takes all we’ve learned about bodyweight training over the last 40 years since Arnold wrote the book, to get you even more powerful results:

=> Check out Bodyweight MASS here

Train hard, talk soon –

– Forest Vance

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3 Ways to Build Muscle With Bodyweight Workouts

The following is a guest article from bodyweight training expert Alain Gonzalez of


– Forest


3 Ways to Build Muscle With Bodyweight Workouts
by Alain Gonzalez, author, Bodyweight MASS

Regardless of what you’ve been told, bodyweight (or calisthenics) training is 100% a viable method for building muscle.

There’s only one problem ..

If we want to build muscle, we’ve got to progressively do more work. With weight training it’s as easy as adding 1-2 reps, an additional set, or just adding a few pounds to the bar.

With bodyweight training, on the other hand, you’ve got to get a bit more strategic.

Looking to build muscle with bodyweight workouts? Try including these amplifier sets to your training.

BTA #1 – Rep Tempo

This refers to the speed at which we perform each repetition.

There are 4 components to the rep tempo that each plays a vital role in the lift: Eccentric, Isometric, Concentric, and another Isometric.

Manipulating the rep tempo, although important but not critical when training with weights, could be a game changer for bodyweight trainees.

By increasing, for example, the eccentric portion of the lift, you are essentially keeping your muscles under tension for a longer period of time. More tension = more stress.

Other Ways to Build Muscle with Bodyweight Movements

BTA #2 – Training Density

Increasing Training Density: Decreasing the timeframe it takes in order to complete a given workout (sets x reps).

So if a particular training session takes you 1 hour to complete, the goal should be to complete that same workout in less time (i.e. decreasing rest periods).

Let’s say that cranking out 200 reps in 60 minutes was challenging. To take things to the next level, decrease your work time by 5 minutes. If you rose to the challenge and again completed 200 total repetitions, you may not have increased your total volume, but you’ve still increased your training density. In other words, you can do more work in less time, and are therefore progressing.

BTA #3 – Variations

For this amplifier, we’ll use the example of a push-up since this seems to be the exercise most become proficient at, fastest.

At one point or another, you’ll be able to perform 50-60 push-ups in a given set. This means that you’ve become extremely proficient with the movement and thus the intensity of this workout is extremely low (for you).

The next option would be to either:

— Add weight
— Adjust tempo
— Increase training density
— Use a more challenging variation

Some example of challenging variations for bodyweight movements:

1. Chin-Ups to Single Arm Chin-Ups

2. Pull Ups to Wide Grip Pull Ups

3. Push-Ups to One Arm Push-Ups

4. Squats to Pistol Squats

Why is this a viable option?

Well .. I don’t think it’s hard to see how squatting (or pushing up) your entire body using one leg (or arm) rather than two would equate to a heavier load on the target muscle.

At the end of the day, if your goal is to build size and strength, then bodyweight training, with the right principles in place, can and will produce solid muscle and strength gains.

– Alain Gonzalez, author, Bodyweight MASS

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9 Minute Bodyweight Circuit for Fat Loss

Say NO to cardio, and burn more fat in less time!

Finish off your workout with this 9 minute high-intensity bodyweight circuit today:

This is the training style we use in No Gym? No Excuse! Fast, efficient, and highly effective workouts you can do anywhere, using minimal equipment.

You see, losing fat, gaining muscle, and improving your health is easy when you have a plan. And we have No Gym? No Excuse! on sale this week at the lowest price ever. So click the link below and order now:

=> Forest Vance 12 Week “No Excuses” Training System (70% off, this week only)

Train hard, talk soon –

– Forest Vance
Master of Science, Human Movement
Certified Personal Trainer

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Bodyweight – Only “Shock and Awe” Strength Workout

For the last couple of days, we have been talking about this concept of “Anabolic Running” –

Today I am going to share something with you that will take your results to the next level.

You see, after your Anabolic Running workout, you will have human growth hormone elevated in your blood stream.

You can take advantage of this, and get even BETTER results, by performing a “Shock and Awe” strength workout (example below) within the first 2 hours after your Anabolic Running workout.

It’s a simple technique – but HIGHLY powerful:


Shock and Awe Strength Workout
(exercise explainations / video walk – thrus found in the Anabolic Running program)

Complete three rounds with minimal rest:

75 bodyweight squats
30 push ups
10 pull ups
30 dips
30 Australian curls
120 seconds up downs


That’s a single workout from the Shock and Awe program.

Give it a test run, and see if it’s for you.

There are 24 total phases like this one for you to go through.

As you can see – this zero-equipment strength and physique – building system that will get you an attention – commanding body with jaw-dropping functional strength is WELL worth the cost of the Anabolic Running program in ITSELF –

But you get it FREE with your purchase.

Another great reason to check out the program and get your copy today:

=> Anabolic Running

Again – give today’s workout a test run to see if it’s for you … then go get the full Anabolic Running program to take your gainz to the next level!

Train hard, talk soon –

– Forest Vance
Master of Science, Human Movement
Certified Personal Trainer

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Bodyweight Beast (sample workout)

If you want to double (or even triple) your strength …

Forge a powerful and athletic body …

Using ZERO equipment …

In 28 days time! …

You’ll want to check out Bodyweight Beast.

This is a uniquely designed bodyweight only training system, created by my good friend Travis Stoetzel.

It’s PERFECT for this time of year, because workouts in the program – like the one below – can be done absolutely positively anywhere, in a short amount of time, ZERO equipment required:


Week 1, Day 1 – Bodyweight Beast

Choice – Aggressive Strength Warm Up

1A) Quick Box Jumps 3 x 15 (OR Prisoner Squat Jumps if no box)

*Perform on a low box and go for speed

2A) Bodyweight Squats 4 x 20
2B) Plank + Knee Tucks 4 x 15 / side

3A) Push Ups 3 x submax
3B) Recline Row 3 x submax

*Use any type of variation on either movement – switch up hand positions, do on DB’s, with feet elevated, etc

4A) Burpee Tabata x 1 Round (Do 20 secs of work with 10 secs break x 8 rounds)

*Count the amount of Burpees you complete

Post Workout Extras:

*Stretch and Foam Roll
*Do 50 band pull aparts + 25 shoulder dislocators (if access to bands)


This program is based around principles Travis used to help a Professional Brazilian Football team WIN The Brazil Bowl by using just Bodyweight Training.

The workouts are very cool and unique – I would say not competitive with, but COMPLIMENTARY to, my Bodyweight Strong course.

Plus, you also get an ADDTIONAL 8 week bodyweight program – ‘Mobile and Hostile’ – when you order, PLUS an 8 week muscle up guide from Travis as well.

Get all the details and grab your copy at the link below:

=> Bodyweight Beast

Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, have a great one! –

– Forest Vance

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Squat + Push Up + Burpee Ladder (BRUTAL)

Last weekend I was in Las Vegas, meeting with the Renegade Fitness Entrepreneurs mastermind group.

We had a fantastic meeting – of course as well as a little fun around town.

We were in Vegas after all!

One of the things I did while there was knock out a killer bodyweight workout with my buddy Travis and a couple other members of the group.

The schedule was jam packed, and we didn’t have time to get to a gym, so we just did this one in the living room before we headed out on Saturday night:


Squat + Push Up + Burpee Ladder


60 squats
30 push ups
15 burpees

50 squats
25 push ups
12 burpees

40 squats
20 push ups
9 burpees

30 squats
15 push ups
6 burpees

20 squats
10 push ups
3 burpees



We finished that one in around 13 minutes.

It may not look too bad on paper – but it’s BRUTAL!!

As I write this it’s Thursday … and the soreness is just leaving my quads, chest, shoulders, and tris.

The great part about this is that it requires ZERO equipment – you can do it absolutely positively anywhere.

So give it a try, see if you can beat our time …

And remember – when you have workouts like this one – NO EXCUSES.

You can get it done ANYWHERE, in a very short amount of time.

Finish the year strong! –

– Forest

PS – Travis came up with this workout. I loved it. I asked him if he has a program with more workouts like it. The answer was yes. Here it is:

=> Bodyweight Beast

The honest truth is that when it comes to programming to get you lean, jacked, and all-around athletic, Travis is one of the best strength coaches out there. His programs have been a big influence on my training methods over the last few years. I highly recommend Bodyweight Beast!

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[video] Can’t Do Pull Ups? Here’s How to Get There!

If you can’t do pull ups (yet), today’s video is going to show you how to get there.

Pull ups are important. They are one of the best indicators of total body fitness. If you are a woman and you can do a few pull ups … or if you are a man and you can do 10 or more … you probably have a solid bodyweight-to-strength ratio, relatively low level of bodyfat, and good overall level of fitness.

They are a great way to train your upper body pulling muscles … as well as the core and the total body!

Watch the video below, and learn:

— The difference between a pull up and a chin up .. and which one is easier
— What “counts” as a legit pull up or chin up rep
— The PROPER way to do a jumping or assisted pull up or chin up
— The PROPER way to do a band-assisted pull up or chin up
— How to work to full, unassisted pull ups / chins ups – and beyond!

And if you find this helpful, be sure to check out the full “Bodyweight Strong” 12 Week Training Plan at the link below:

=> Bodyweight STRONG

Thanks –

– Forest Vance
Certified Progressive Calisthenics Instructor
creator, Bodyweight Strong

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Bodyweight Workout – the Ladder Challenge


It was just a few years ago that I personally got into body weight training.

I have a strength background, and have been pretty strong by most standards since my football days … but when I first started getting into this body weight stuff, it exposed a lot of my weaknesses.

I could bench 450, but only could do a handful of pull ups.

The first time I tried a pistol squat, I failed miserably!

I thought I’d NEVER be able to pull off the calisthenics moves I saw these guys busting out on YouTube – like HSPUs, muscle ups, and human flags.

But the cool thing is, if you train consistently and intelligently on the bodyweight basics – you can make big improvements in time.

I can do about 5x as many pull ups as I could when I first started working on them regularly … I can knock out a solid 7 or 8 pistols squats in a row on each side … and I can do and a bunch more bodyweight moves that, looking back to when I first started, seemed unattainable.

Now I am without a doubut still a work in progress … but I am proud of what I have accomplished with hard work! … and the bottom line is, no matter where you are at today, if you have a desire to get better … AND you use an intelligently designed program to get there … you can make it happen.

=> Here’s a program that will help you get better at pull ups, push ups, and other body weight training basics

SO. Got one of my all-time favorite body weight – only workouts for you today. This one is a great test of your all-around body weight fitness, because you have to be relatively strong to complete all the pull ups and push ups and squats … have to be moving well, be flexible, mobile, have a strong core, etc to do all the reps with perfect form … and you have to be in good condition just to finish it!

This is not only a great workout in itself, it will give you a great idea of where you are at with your body weight strength, and what you need to work on.


Bodyweight Workout – the Ladder Challenge

Start with one pull up.

After you complete the pull up, move directly into two push ups.

Follow the push ups with three body weight squats.

Then you’ll start “climbing the ladder”, increasing your reps by (1,2,3 respectively) in each exercise each round until you reach:

– 10 pull ups
– 20 push ups
– 30 body weight squats

So your second and third rounds would look like:

– 2 pull ups
– 4 push ups
– 6 squats

And then:

– 3 pull ups
– 6 push ups
– 9 squats

Your goal is to 1) use PERFECT form in each exercise 2) “climb the ladder” as fast as possible.

Get your time to complete the workout, then try to beat it next time around!


Try this bodyweight ladder challenge workout, and let me know how you do.

And remember – no matter where you are at today, if you have a desire to get better … AND you use an intelligently designed program to get there … you can make it happen.

Train hard, talk soon –

Forest Vance
Certified Progressive Calisthenics Instructor

PS – If you are looking for a full program to help you get better at pull ups, push ups, and other body weight training basics, HERE is the one I highly recommend.

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Desert Island Workout – How to Burn Fat with ZERO Equipment

Craig Ballantyne, bodyweight fat loss expert and creator of ‘Turbulence Training Bootcamp Workouts‘, calls routines like the one I’m sharing with you today, “Desert Island Workouts”.

This is because you could be stranded in the middle of nowhere, like Tom Hanks in “Cast Away”, and you could still do them from start to finish … with no substitutions!

These are designed SPECIFICALLY for folks who want to blast fat, gain lean muscle, and get a great workout in a short amount of time – with zero equipment.

So NO excuses – give this one a try today:


“Desert Island Workout” for fat loss (Turbulence Training Bootcamp Workout #16)

Warm-up (30 seconds per exercise) – 5 minutes

— Jumping Jacks
— Pushup
— Stick-up
— Running in Place

Rest 1 minute before repeating 1 more time.

TT Strength Circuit (30 seconds per exercise) – 5 minutes

— Vertical Jump
— Spiderman Pushup

Rest 1 minute before repeating 1 more time.

TT Tabata – 10 minutes

— BW Squats – 20 seconds BW squats plus 10 second walking recovery x 8 rounds

Rest 2 minutes and take water break

— Touchdown Forward Lunge plus Pushups – 20 seconds touchdown forward lunges plus 10 seconds pushups x 8 rounds

TT Total Body Abs Circuit (30 seconds per exercise) – 5 minutes

— Spiderman Climb
— Plank on 1-Leg (30 seconds per side)
— Burpee

Rest 1 minute before repeating 1 more time.

Cool-down, Stretching & Water Break – 5 minutes



It’s desert island fat loss workout time.

Get to it!

And let me know how it goes for you –

– Forest Vance
Master of Science, Human Movement
Certified Personal Trainer

PS – If you liked this workout, you can get 21+ more like it from Craig at the link below:

=> 21 TT Boot Camp Workouts

You’ll also get some resources designed specifically for fit pros – so that you can use these workouts to build your bootcamp program … WITHOUT having to drop thousands of dollars on equipment.  Pretty sweet.  Don’t miss it 😉

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[guest article] 8 Reasons to do Handstand Pushups

Handstand push ups are one of my favorite bodyweight exercises.

Got a guest post for you today from my friend Logan Christopher on 8 great reasons WHY they are so awesome – and why you should be doing them!


8 Reasons to do Handstand Pushups
by Logan Christopher, author, the Ultimate Guide to Handstand Push Ups

Handstand pushup benefits are many. Some might even call it one of the greatest exercises ever invented. On that note here are eight reasons you should do them …

1 – Handstand pushups strengthen the triceps, shoulders and chest

The triceps are the muscles on the backs of the upper arms. They are used in extending the arm at the elbow. The shoulders or deltoid muscles are used in raising the arm overhead. The chest or pectoral muscles primarily bring the arms forward. Depending on how much arch is used in your handstand pushups, you can use these muscles more or less.

With different variations of these exercises you’ll emphasize or downplay these muscles to different degrees. But these aren’t the only muscles in use …

2 – Strengthens many stabilizer muscles

In order to keep your body overhead you need more than just the prime movers to be firing. For example, the lats, the big muscles on the back, will be used to stabilize your body in air. In fact, a number of people have reported their pullup numbers going up just from doing handstand pushups.

Part of the reason for this is covered in the next point …

3 – Requires coordination and balance

The handstand pushup requires more coordination and balance than handling a similar weight in the military press for instance. While this isn’t to say that a barbell doesn’t take any coordination or balance, any handstand position simply takes more. Just remember the first time you kicked up into a handstand against a wall. Chances are you weren’t quite sure where your body was in space. And this is doing a handstand against the wall, not even in the open.

So while the balance isn’t a huge part of this move, it is in there. There are many people that can push a barbell equal to their weight overhead but don’t have the coordination necessary to do handstand pushups.

4 – Can be handled very progressively

Unfortunately, many people believe that the handstand pushup is just one exercise with not much variation in it. This is far from the truth. Did you know that just changing the position of your arms can dramatically change the difficulty of this exercise? The same is true with your head position too.

There are also other methods like doing partials that can make this exercise suitable for just about every level. For a whole lot more on progressing with handstand pushups click here:

Ultimate Guide to Handstand Push Ups

5 – Can be an effective muscle builder

Handstand pushups are a good exercise to build muscle. When done for higher reps, you can certainly add size to your shoulders and arms especially. They may not equal a barbell in gaining mass for one simple reason. As you’re adding muscle you’re gaining weight, and that is going to make this exercise harder, as opposed to any weight lifting exercise.

6 – Handstands provides the benefits of inversion

Inversions are known to provide a number of benefits by themselves. This can be something simple like a headstand but handstand pushups certainly count. These benefits include reversing the flow of gravity, which can add in circulation, even clearing mental cobwebs as oxygen supply increases to the brain.

7 – Wrist strength and flexibility

The typical handstand position requires the hands to be bent back 90 degrees. This serves to build both strength and flexibility throughout the wrist. Fingertip strength increases because of how you’ll grip the ground during the pushup too.

Of course, many people lack the wrist flexibility to safely do this exercise without pain. This covers great ways to sidestep this issue as well as build up your flexibility:

Ultimate Guide to Handstand Push Ups

8 – Handstand pushups are an impressive skill few people can do

This may be the most important benefit of handstand pushups. When you can do these effortlessly you are in a class above most people. This skill can be made much harder in a number of ways too, which will make it even more impressive, like doing full range handstand pushups, one arm handstand pushups, or doing them freestanding.

If you’re looking to impress your friends, family or a member of the opposite sex it’s worth a shot to improve your handstand pushups. 😉


Great stuff Logan!

Thanks for sharing with FVT readers.

If you want all these benefits and more, make sure to check out the Ultimate Guide to Handstand Pushups here. There’s a special discount on this page only:

Ultimate Guide to Handstand Push Ups

I’m off to go practice my handstand push ups!

– Forest Vance
Certified Progressive Calisthenics Instructor
Master of Science, Human Movement

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