The Playbook For The Modern Man

Stuck In Isolation? Celebrity Trainer Sam Wood Reveals The Best Exercises To Keep In Shape

Body going as saggy as your sofa? This is for you.

Time is the pestering constant no one ever has enough of. In modern society it’s also part of a more common gripe: I don’t have any. But with the Coronavirus pendulum starting to swing, and many people stuck in self-isolation, time is the one thing many of us now have (if not toilet paper or fresh food).

But before you disappear down a Youtube wormhole and get stuck into the wine and Twix bars you stashed for this very moment, you might like to take a moment of your day and dedicate it to your physical integrity and mental sanity.

If that sounds like something you could get down and sweaty for, here are some of the best exercises you can do to keep your rig in shape, courtesy of one of Australia’s busiest dads with a stone-cold psycho physique. He’s also friendly, generous with his time, and used to be on some TV show about a bachelor too…

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We’re talking about Sam Wood. So: if you’re time rich and equipment poor, here are the best exercise routines for keeping your whole body ripped even when self quarantined with nothing but your old iPod Nano, an irate partner and motivational internet videos for company.

Best Chest Exercises You Can Do From Home

“Ok boys, you want a chest challenge from home? Give this a crack,” Sam Wood told us. These are some of the best chest exercises the average guy can do when at home in isolation.

First up: do 9 sets of max push-ups with 45 seconds rest between each set, to be done as follows.

  • First three sets: neutral grip (hands shoulder-width apart)
  • Next three sets: wide grip (hands 3 inches wider than shoulder-width apart)
  • Last three sets: close grip or tricep push-ups (hands 3 inches apart and elbows in)

Then, if you’re still needing a bit more of a chest pump, finishing with some fly’s: “these can be done very efficiently with a suspension trainer or a resistance band (3 sets of 15).”

Best Leg Exercises You Can Do From Home

According to Sam, “there is no reason you should be looking to train your legs any differently at home as you do at the gym, outside of perhaps use of a leg press.” Why’s that? Well, all you need is about a two by two metre squared space and – as long as you have some super basic equipment – and the world of shank crippling pain is yours for the taking.

“Dumbbell deadlifts, front squats, forward and back lunge combos gives you a killer at home leg workout.”

As for your program? Try this.

  • 10 deadlifts
  • 10 front squats
  • 10 forward lunges (each leg)
  • 10 reverse lunges (each leg)

Now repeat that 4 times, “with as heavy a dumbbell as you can handle.”

Best Arm & Shoulder Exercises You Can Do From Home

“If you have no equipment,” Sam tells us, “go for wall push-ups, close-grip push ups and dips on the couch.”

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“If you have dumbbells,” though, “shoulder presses, overhead tricep dumbbell extensions and bicep curls are all you need.”

Want a routine? Try this shoulder and arm pyramid.

  • Dumbell shoulder press
  • Dumbell bicep curl
  • Dumbell tricep extension

Chuck in this rep period of: 8 reps, 12, reps, 16 reps, 20 reps, 16 reps, 12 reps, 8 reps, and keep rest between sets to a minimum, and – while your arms and shoulder will be burning – you’ll be laughing.

Self-Isolation Nutrition Tips

While we’d all love access to the gym 24/7, when you’re travelling or when you’re stuck at home due to a global pandemic, it’s not always possible. In light of that, it’s more important than ever to be smart about your workout routine, which can be as beneficial mentally as it is physically.

Also important, as Wood told us in a previous article, is being sensible about how you work out: “Variety, intensity and consistency will always beat volume,” he says, with the only exception being if you’re training for a specific event or endurance marathons.

As most of his clients at 28 By Sam Wood (Sam’s online training and nutrition program) are after the more immediate goals of getting stronger, fitter and leaner (like most people generally), this should most likely be your focus, too.

To achieve this, focus on the quality of your training, the consistency of which you do it, and your food.

“You can never out-train nutrition.”

All up, according to Wood’s philosophy, 30 effective minutes a day is all it takes. Got it? A shit hot isolation-bod awaits.

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