Arnold Schwarzenegger Shared His Go-To Home Workout, So Naturally I Had to Try It
There is probably no one I'd prefer to take home workout advice from than Arnold Schwarzenegger, and that's a fact I didn't know about myself until this morning. On Saturday, he gifted the internet with his go-to home workout, complete with retro demonstration photos that are, quite frankly, giving me life. I had to try the workout for myself — in my living room — and I can confirm that Schwarzenegger's routine provides a quick and thorough full-body workout.
Schwarzenegger explained on Reddit that he's releasing the workout because he believes that with all the uncertainty at the moment, our fitness is one thing we can control, even without access to a gym. "Body weight, or freehand, training is the oldest method in the world," he said. "Gladiators and Vikings didn't have gymnasiums. I started my own fitness journey with chin-ups on a tree branch by a lake in Austria."
The workout is pretty straightforward and doesn't require any special equipment (you don't even need hand weights), and there are variations for beginners and advanced people. In the Reddit post, Schwarzenegger laid out the simplest way to complete the workout: "If an exercise says 50 reps, you are doing 50 reps however you can. You can do 10 sets of 5 reps, 5 sets of 10 reps, 2 sets of 25 reps. It doesn't matter." For me, that meant turning the workout into a circuit, so I completed four rounds with 10 repetitions per exercise (a total of 40 reps per exercise). The whole workout took me just under 25 minutes to complete.
There are a couple of modifications I had to make to complete the exercises, and I felt he probably wouldn't mind. First — it has to be said — I have no idea how he keeps the chairs in place while doing the dips and rows, so I did triceps dips using one chair instead of two. For the rows, I placed the broom across the seat of the chair, rather than the top of the chair, because that just seemed like a hazard. My final modification was with the chin-ups (sorry, Schwarzenegger, but who has a bar in their home to do chin-ups?), which I substituted with shoulder presses instead, using a USA Pro Long Resistance Band (£10, originally £15). You could use cans or hand weights depending on what you've got.
Ahead, see Schwarzenegger's home workout, and please feast your eyes on the throwback instructional photos he provided, too.