How to Lift Weights for Free (for beginners)

I’m pretty cheap (or “frugal” in fancier terms.) Because of that, I avoid spending any money on overpriced kettlebells or dumbells or anything else of that sort. It’s just as easy to get the same effect at home for free.

If you haven’t done too much working out or physical activity lately, it is best to start off slowly. Otherwise, you may overextend yourself. Just grab two cups, wallets, or other objects weighing 1-3 pounds. Curl them up and down when you’re watching TV, browsing the Internet, or doing anything else that doesn’t require too much attention. I spend so much time on Facebook that I can get a good workout by using one arm for the mouse and curling with the other arm.

After a few days of lightweight training, you’ll probably be chomping at the bit for something harder. Grab an old backpack and put a few books in it. They usually have a handle on the top that you can hold while you curl them. Choose a weight that makes your muscles burn but not hurt. Do at least 10 curls a day, preferably three sets of 10. It’s okay to take a day off if you’re sore. Your muscles need time to rebuild after going through a beating.

Add a book to the backpack every few days, (hardcovers are heavy!) so that you get a slow climb towards bodybuilder-level weights. (kind of like the old Greek story of the man who carried his piglet to the creek every day until it got big and weighed 200 lbs!) After a few weeks, you’ll be pretty darn ripped.

It is easy to do shrugs with a backpack, as well. They will make you a lot more handsome. Just put the pack on and move your shoulders up and down slowly. It may be a good idea to make the backpack heavier than when you curl with it to get the same effect, however. Just do 10-20 reps a day and take breaks or reduce the weight if it’s too hard.

By following these simple and cheap directions, you’ll be looking like Hulk Hogan in a jiffy. Well, maybe not exactly like him. But close.

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