Best Home Workout Program to Build Muscle

Best Home Workout Program to Build Muscle

Here’s a bodyweight workout that only requires a table, a chair, and a pull-up bar. To progress, add reps until you reach the top of your target rep range (20 reps for most exercises), and once you can do this for all 3 sets, progress by adding sets.

Home Workout Program to Build Muscle

Big shout out to Michael Mathews for this workout. He’s a fitness and nutrition expert and the author of Muscle for Life: Get Lean, Strong, and Healthy at Any Age. Be sure to check it out!

To get started with his home workout program to build muscle, be sure to focus on muscle contraction and rest periods. Rest 1-to-2 minutes between each exercise, and finish all of the sets for one exercise before moving on to the next.

Pull-up or Chin-up

Sets & reps:

3 sets of as many reps as possible

How to:

To do the pull-up, get into the starting position shown above, with your palms facing away from you and about shoulder-width apart and your arms straight. Without swinging your feet or your knees, pull your body upward until your chin rises above your hands, then lower yourself and return to the starting position.

To do the chin-up, perform the exercise the same way, except with your palms facing you.

Push-up

Sets & reps:

3 sets of 10-to-20 reps

How to:

Get into the starting position shown above. Keeping your back straight, lower your chest to the floor, and then push your body up and return to the starting position.

This is known as the regular push-up, and if you can’t get at least 10 reps using this technique, try the knee push-up. It works exactly like the regular push-up, except instead of resting your weight on your toes and hands, you’re on your knees and hands. If you can do more than 20 reps for all 3 sets of regular push-ups, make the exercise harder by doing the feet-elevated push-up.

It’s identical to the regular push-up, except instead of resting your feet on the floor, you place them on a surface that’s about knee-height off the floor (like a chair).

Bodyweight Squat

Sets & reps:

3 sets of 10-to-20 reps

How to:

Stand up straight with your feet around shoulder-width apart and your toes pointing out at about 20 to 25 degrees (around one and eleven o’clock). Take a deep breath into your stomach, brace your abs, and sit straight down by pushing your hips backward and bending your knees at the same time.

As you lower your butt toward the floor, keep your spine straight, core tight, and chest up (imagine you’re trying to show someone a logo on your T-shirt). You should feel like you’re dropping your torso between your heels, and if you have trouble maintaining your balance as you descend, keep your arms extended straight out in front of you.

Once your thighs are parallel with the floor (or slightly lower, but not higher), stand up and return to the starting position.

Bodyweight Row

Sets & reps:

3 sets of 10-to-20 reps

How to:

Find a surface to lie under that’s more than arm’s length off the floor (such as a table, tall bench, or dip station). Get into the starting position shown above, and, keeping your back and legs straight and your butt high, pull your body upward until your nose touches the surface, if using a table, bench, etc., or until your chest touches the bar, if you’re using one. Then lower yourself and return to the starting position.

To increase or decrease the difficulty of this exercise, lower or raise whatever you’re holding on to (making your body less or more upright).

Bodyweight Lunge

Sets & reps:

3 sets of 10-to-20 reps

How to:

Stand up straight with both feet about shoulder-width apart. Take a long step forward with your right foot—about two to three feet—and, with most of your weight on your front foot, lower your body until your left knee touches the floor.

Then reverse the motion by pushing off the floor with your front foot and leaning slightly backward, allowing your legs to straighten. Once you’re standing, bring your right foot back to the starting position, and then repeat the pattern with your other foot (to complete one full rep).

Home Workout Program to Build Muscle with Dumbells

If you have a set of dumbbells, try this challenging, enjoyable, and effective full-body workout. To progress, add reps until you reach the top of your target rep range (20 reps for most exercises), and once you can do this for all 3 sets, progress by adding sets.

If you have an adjustable set of dumbbells or a collection of dumbbells of varying weights, increase the weight by 5-to-10 pounds once you can do 3 sets of 20 reps instead of adding sets (and if you run out of weight to add, then you can start adding sets to progress). Rest 1-to-2 minutes between each exercise, and finish all of the sets for one exercise before moving on to the next.

Dumbbell Bench Press

Sets & reps:

3 sets of 10-to-20 reps

How to:

Sit on the edge of the bench with the dumbbells on your thighs. Then get into the starting position shown above by leaning back slowly and gently kicking your thighs (and the dumbbells) toward your chest. Continue to roll back onto the bench until you’re lying flat with the dumbbells at either side of your chest.

Pull your shoulder blades together and toward your butt (imagine you’re “putting your shoulder blades into your back pockets”), and position your elbows six to ten inches from your ribs.

Then, keeping your shoulder blades and elbows tucked, push the dumbbells straight up until your arms are locked, and finally, lower the dumbbells by reversing the motion (maintaining the position of your shoulder blades and elbows) and return to the starting position.

Dumbbell Goblet Squat

Sets & reps:

3 sets of 10-to-20 reps

How to:

The dumbbell goblet squat works the same way as the bodyweight squat, except you hold a dumbbell directly in front of your chest as shown in the images above.

Dumbbell Deadlift

Sets & reps:

3 sets of 10-to-20 reps

How to:

Get into the starting position shown above, holding one dumbbell in each hand. Position your feet slightly narrower than shoulder-width apart, and turn your toes out slightly. Stand up tall with your chest out and arms at your sides, and take a deep breath into your stomach (as opposed to your chest), bracing your abs as if you were about to get punched in the gut.

Start the descent by pushing your hips backward and bending at the knees. Don’t allow your lower back to round as you move downward—instead, arch it slightly. Allow your knees to bend slightly more as the dumbbells pass them, and keep going until the dumbbells are six to eight inches from the floor.

To stand up, drive your body upward by pushing through your heels, keeping your arms straight, lower back slightly arched (no rounding!), and core tight. Once the dumbbells pass your knees, push your hips forward as you return to the starting position.

Dumbbell Overhead Press

Sets & reps:

3 sets of 10-to-20 reps

How to:

Adjust a bench to an upright position (most people prefer a slight incline, around 75 degrees or so), and get into the starting position shown above by lifting or kicking the dumbbells up with your knees. Then tuck your shoulder blades back and down, push the dumbbells straight up until your arms are locked, lower them, and return to the starting position.

One-Arm Dumbbell Row

Sets & reps:

3 sets of 10-to-20 reps

How to:

Get into the starting position shown above, and with your right knee and arm firmly planted on the bench and your left foot on the floor a foot or two from the bench, pull the dumbbell toward your torso. Keep pulling until the dumbbell touches the side of your belly or the bottom of your rib cage, then lower it and return to the starting position.

Also, one set entails training both limbs. For instance, you’ve completed 1 set of 10 reps of the one-arm dumbbell row when you’ve done 10 reps for each arm.

Wrap-Up

Are you ready to get started with this home workout program to build muscle? Thanks to this great workout by Michael Mathews, now you can!

If you want more great workout tips from Michael, you can get his book on Amazon or you can follow him on Instagram, Facebook, Youtube, or Twitter. Be sure to check his book out, it will change how you see fitness!

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