Workout Routines

At-Home Barbell Blast

Attack your upper body efficiently with this barbell routine you can do in the comfort of your own home.

David Sandler, MS, CSCSD thumbnail by MS, CSCS*D
At-Home Barbell Blast

If you have a barbell and some weights lying around your house, it’s time to put them to good use. Here’s a great “quick pump” workout that will challenge your upper body and, over time, give you that same great muscle shape you would get in the gym.

While most people, especially guys, think it’s hard to get a good workout at home in the absence of an abundant supply of iron, it’s all about strict attention to proper technique to get the most out of each rep. In other words, if your attention to training form is on point—provided you have at least a minimum of equipment—you'll still be able to stay on the fast track to your training goals.

SEE ALSO: 30-Minute Full-Body Workout

The following workout requires you to have only a barbell and a pair of 25-pound plates, but don’t underestimate its difficulty. Volume is the key to increasing muscle size, so this routine will focus on extending sets, which will cause plenty of muscle fatigue. Military presses and push-ups are the center of the routine for your delts and chest, but to keep your body balance in check, we give your back a light pulling move and your biceps a heavy dose of curling strength.

You’ll start off with push-ups on the barbell, which challenges your core and your overall balance. If you’re advanced, feel free to take those push-ups to the next level by elevating your legs on a couch or chair to make the move more difficult. The military presses that follow will be done with light weight, but after having worked your chest, shoulders and triceps with push-ups, reps will be tougher than normal. However, if the weight is still too light, try slowing down your rep speed, taking a few extra seconds to complete each rep.


SEE ALSO: No-Equipment Home Workout

After performing this routine every other day for a week increase intensity by knocking 15 seconds off your rest period. That means resting 45 seconds between sets instead of 60. After 3-4 more sessions at 45 seconds reduce the rest period to 30 seconds. Finally, after another week's worth of training, see if you can get your rest periods down to just 15 seconds. With each successive drop in rest period you'll not only bolster your aerobic capacity, but increase the stresses placed upon your muscles. They'll be screaming for mercy halfway through the routine with only 15 seconds between the last grueling set and the next.

At-Home Barbell Workout Routine

Exercise    Sets Reps Rest
Barbell Push-Up 6* 12 60
Military Press 6* 12 60
Barbell Bent-Over Row 4 12-15 60
Barbell Curl   4 10-12 60

*Three sets with a shoulder-width grip, three sets outside of shoulder-width.