Ultimate Full-Body Workout #1

This is a workout that is going to blast your entire body, in 30 minutes or less (?.) When you are finished, pat yourself on the back.

There are two ways to do this, as I see it. One, do the 3 sets of triplets without stopping in between. Use enough weight to challenge you on the chosen reps.
The second way is to rest between triplets (my favorite at this point in time.) Call it the beginner’s and advanced versions if you like.
Here is the first triplet. Perform it three times:

Clean Shrugs. (Clean a barbell from the ground, extending through the ankles knees and hips, and using an exaggerated shrug at the top, all in one smooth motion. See this link for a demonstration: 

Do 5 reps at 80-85% of your 1 rep. max. Get 5 even if it means dropping the barbell and re-setting yourself. Use heavy dumbbells or kettlebells if that is what you have. On 5, drop it and:

Sprint 50 yards. Stop next to a wall and:

Handstand pushups. As many reps as you can do, whether it’s 1 or 20. 


(*If you have trouble with these, instead of doing a handstand facing away from the wall, turn around and climb up the wall with your feet. This allows you to walk out from vertical until you can do a full rep. Not too far or the shoulder muscles stop working as hard.)


After three of those, rest a couple minutes (no more than 5, c’mon!)
Second triplet, execute three times:
-Front Squat with sandbag, rock or other odd object (Barbells are fine too, of course!) 


x 3-5 reps 
Bodyweight Squats: 

10, 20, 30 reps? Do the reps fast but in strict form (i.e., explode off the bottom) until the burn in your thighs stops you.

Seated straight leg raise hold with Russian twist: 

Sit in a straight leg raise, legs elevated 6-8 inches off the ground, or wherever you feel the greatest recruitment of your abdominals. 


Hold this position while performing 20 Russian twists (modified.) Do this by clasping your hands together, arms straight in front of you. Keeping them straight, rotate all the way left, squeezing the obliques, then all the way right.

 *Optional: Hold onto a medicine ball or bowling ball while doing these. Arrrrr…*
That’s it. Your’e done! 

Try this workout and adjust it to your individual fitness level. Use proper form, and when in doubt, rest it out, ouch. Anyway, know your limits but also, push them.


This is a workout anyone can do with nothing more than a barbell and an improvised (or not) sandbag. Of course I prefer rocks, and I like to use my rusty old standard barbell. I don’t mind abusing it and the lower starting point adds difficulty to exercises. 

Be sure to get a good warm up before starting this work out, and stretch afterwards. Have fun!

Check out the high tech equipment I like to use:

***If you want to learn how the Gladiators trained, check out this incredible program from Steve Maxwell,
The Spartacus Workout. He combines bodyweight conditioning, kettlebells, clubs and rings for a fresh, advanced program.

Homemade Climbing Rope-Cheap and Easy

Climbing ropes are one of those pieces of equipment you can’t take any chances with. But with new ropes costing upwards of $120 + shippnig, I knew I had to find a way to make a homemade climbing rope for a lot less money.

Special thanks to the Home Depot guy who showed me how to braid the rope. I was able to set up a strong rope swing/slash climbing rope on the tree ni my backyard. The cost? About $20 bucks for the rope, and nothing for the two carabineers I already had on hand, which would have cost another $12-15 dollars.

Here are the results:

 At the time I was thinking more kid’s rope swing then climbing rope. It was only after I had tied the knots in the rope that I realized I could climb it. 

To do this you will need:

-15-20′ feet of 3/4″ inch thick rope.(I used the poly rope as you can see. Confession, I bought it because it was cheap and strong, but it worked out fine and has tight knots.

-Carabineers to attach braided rope loop through and then to hang from fixed anchor.

-The ability to braid a rope. This is not as hard as it looks. If you can braid hair, you can braid the rope. This rope was braided back down the length of the rope which tightens the braid when the rope bears weight. (See below for close-ups.)

An upside down view.

Here is a close up of the braiding. See the tire hanging over the other end of the ladder? This is an old stroller tire I had in the garage. It was a perfect fit.

Another view of the braid.

All in all this has climbing rope/rope swing has taken a beating, been swung on by big kids, climbed on by me and lasted throughout an Arizona summer. I’ve moved it to the garage now. Sooner or later the sun out here will disintegrate those fibers! But for about $20 bucks it has more than proved its value.

A word of caution: Although the weight bearing load listed for this rope is over a thousand pounds, you should always check and double check the knots and anchor point, especially if this is doubling as a rope swing. While my experience has been excellent with this homemade climbing rope, I make no guarantees and anyone trying this does so at their own risk.

On that note, be safe and have fun!!!

The Spartacus Workout is here! Steve Maxwell has put together another amazing advanced training DVD. Check out The Spartacus Workout today.

Complete the Backyard Gym