Building muscle at home

When it comes to winter workouts, heading to the gym can seem unappealing, uninteresting and can even feel impossible. If you’re struggling to get the motivation you need to hit the gym, you could always work out at home. Surprisingly, you can build a lot of solid muscle at home with some basic pieces of equipment. You’ll need:

  • A standard chair.
  • A pull up bar
  • Optional: Push up bars or parallettes


First and foremost, you’ll need to up your intake of lean protein to get the most from your workout plans. You should aim to consume 1-2g of protein per kg of bodyweight to help your muscles grow. You’ll also need to be eating at a calorie surplus, which means working out what your calorie maintenance levels are and then eating more than that. This will mean you can build muscle throughout winter.

With that in mind, you’ll want to eat high protein food from a variety of sources such as chicken, beef, turkey, tofu, lentils, salmon and tuna. You can then combine these with large servings of green vegetables, full of vitamins. Finally, top the meals off with big helpings of wholegrain carbohydrates such as brown rice, quinoa, couscous and more. Shakes and desserts made with protein powder will help create a tasty, muscle-building snack.

Working out

When it comes to working out at home, there aren’t as many exercise options to isolate specific muscles. Instead, you’ll want to focus on ‘compound’ style bodyweight exercises, that access more than one muscle group at a time. These can be split down into upper and lower body routines that would look something like the following:

Upper Body Day

  • 3 x 12Tricepdips
  • 3 x 12 Press ups
  • 3 x 12 Wide arm press ups
  • 3 x 10 Pull ups
  • 3 x 12 Pike press ups
  • 3 x 30 Second dead hangs (on a pull up bar)

Lower Body Day

  • 3 x 12 Jumping squats
  • 3 x 10 ‘Pistols’ (five each leg)
  • 3 x 20 Calf raises
  • 3 x 20 Ab crunches
  • 3 x 20 Leg raises
  • 3 x 10 Single leg hip raise (five each leg)

By alternating these workouts, you’ll be able to build muscle without ever leaving your house. You’ll need to ensure you get adequate rest between sessions, as you’ll end up building an excess of cortisol if you don’t get enough. Getting plenty of sleep is also vital for muscle building, as you’re going to want to allow your body time to recover. Sleep also releases growth hormone, which helps your body grow.