Stay Strong

We’ve got to stay strong, mentally and spiritually and physically.

I’m going to talk about the last one, because many gyms are closed but fitness never sleeps.

You don’t need fancy equipment to get strong. Eating well helps, obviously, because you can’t out-train a bad diet . . . but you still have to train!

Here’s what Alexander J.A. Cortes calls the Prison Workout:

  • 100 pushups
  • 100 sit-ups
  • 100 body weight squats

Do them in any order or permutation, but do this 3-5 days a week (or more) for a month and get back to me on how body weight exercises just don’t cut it.

And here’s how to do pull-ups sans bar:

  • Open a door halfway
  • Stuff a towel or something else underneath to prevent the door from moving
  • Do pull-ups off the top.

That comes courtesy of my friend Shane Fitzgerald of Dungeons & Deadlifts.

Anthony Arvanitakis is another great resource for body weight exercising. Check out his website for more cool ideas. Integrate body weight into your routine if you have equipment at your house, or do it exclusively if you don’t.

Keep moving and keep strong. Kick Corona-Chan’s wimpy butt!

Buy my books here.


  1. I realized very early on, as a young mother, that I wouldn’t be able to exercise unless I did it from home. I’m kind of OCD about it. There is so much that can be done from home. In the early days my basic routine was a series of jumping jacks, push-ups and sit-ups and walking up and down on a step-stool. Heh.

    Liked by 2 people

    • For centuries, calisthetics was the go-to method of strength training for gladiators, strong-men, and prisoners. Many will even tell you that no one should go near free weights until he can manipulate his own bodyweight, and the key is to increase the difficulty of the exercises instead of merely doing one hundred push-ups every day. Only the truest of alpha males can perform one-handed push-ups, for example.

      Liked by 2 people

      • Calisthenics and bodyweight exercises can give really good results. If they were good enough for gladiators . . .

        And yes, one-handed push-ups are very manly. I, of course, cannot do them.


  2. I’ve taken to doing these torturous exercises called ‘Navy Seal Burpees’. I do three sets of ten. It’s certainly taken me a while to get there. But I feel like I am getting more out of them than any other one exercise. Though I do mix it up on other days. At 45 years old, I feel like they’ve got me in better shape than when I was 25, though I know that’s likely just a way we delude ourselves.

    If you haven’t heard of it, it goes like this:

    Take a Burpee, which is simply a Squat-thrust with a jump at the end.

    1) Start from a standing position.

    2) Drop to push-up position.

    3) Do (1) push-up.

    4) Raise your right knee, bringing it toward the left side of your torso/chest (kind of like in a mountain climber, if you know what that is*). Bring leg back. Do this action slowly.

    5) Do (1) push-up.

    6) Repeat step 4 but raise left knee to right side of your torso/chest.

    7) Do (1) push-up.

    8) Spring to standing position as quickly and energetically as possible.

    9) Jump up and land (like a typical Burpee)

    That whole process is (1) Navy Seal Burpee. It kicks my rear end, I can tell you.

    On the days I don’t do that (I try to keep it random), I either run alternating jogs and sprints for 20 minutes or I do pull-ups (I built a pull-up board from two rock climbing handholds and a wooden frame).

    When I do pull-ups, I start with ten. Then I take a breather and jog in place a minute. Then I do nine pull-ups. Repeat until I get to one.

    I think I’ve had a lot of success with this routine. It’s kept me fit enough that when I lead hikes (I lead hikes for a large organized hiking group in the Adirondacks), I feel pretty comfortable when I get to the rougher terrain and higher altitude/thinner air. Our hikes are day hikes between 6 and 20 miles usually. The longer hikes we have to be careful of who we allow to go, for obvious reasons.

    *Way back in the day, while I was in the police academy, mountain climbers were my absolute least favorite exercise during PT. I would rather do hours of push-ups. Or burpees. I swore I would never do mountain climbers ever again after I graduated. And except for mildly flirting with the form during the Navy Seal Burpee, I have kept that promise!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Those modified burpees just *sound* brutal. I’ll have to try them . . . though I can’t guarantee I can really do one set of ten, let alone three!

      Your whole routine sounds great my friend. Thanks for sharing!


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