• No Body Pump? No Problem.

    May 12, 2011

    If you’re a regular reader of Carrots ‘N’ Cake, you know much I enjoy Body Pump. I attend classes regularly and it’s a quick, dirty, and fun workout! But, I know not everyone has access to Body Pump classes, so here are some ways that I’ve incorporated strength training into my workout routine at home.

    At-Home Barbell (Body Pump) Classes

    Before I found my current gym, I did my own version of Body Pump at home. I bought a barbell and set of weights and used a DVD to guide me through my workout in the comfort of my own home. When it comes to strength training, I’m easily distracted, especially at home, so following along with a DVD kept me focused and on track with my workout.

    If you don’t want to buy an entire barbell set, you could still get a really great workout by using two sets of dumbbells (heavy and light) and one of the DVDs below.

    img_9821-475x356 (475x356)

    Get RIPPED!

    My go-to DVD for strength training at home was Jari Love’s Get RIPPED!. It was the first DVD I found online that was similar to Body Pump with regard to the chorography and order of exercises. I did this DVD in my living room twice a week for months.


    Jari Love actually has a lot of awesome (not wussy) DVDs that are great for strength training at home.

    After awhile, I got bored of doing this DVD over and over again, so the next few DVDs are ones that I considered buying, but didn’t because I ended up joining a gym with Body Pump instead.

    Cathe’s Power Hour

    Cathe’s Power Hour DVD contains three muscle conditioning workouts workouts, including Cathe’­s Power Hour (similar to Body Pump), Maximum Intensity Strength (similar to Body Pump), and Body Max (contains both cardio and weight training).


    Again, you will need to buy your own equipment, but once you have it, you have the option of three workouts!

    FlexFuel with Michele Carmichael

    FlexFuel with Michele Carmichael challenges all major muscle groups using barbells and dumbbells to create a strong, lean and sculpted physique. It targets all of the major muscle groups in a challenging and powerful group muscle-training class.



    RIP is technically meant for fitness professionals, but I don’t see why you couldn’t buy it for yourself and do it at home. RIP is a 60-minute barbell program that matches movement to music and using traditional strength training allows participants to work at their own level— just like Body Pump.

    At-Home Strength Training

    Ok, so you’re not into the whole Body Pump/barbell workouts. That’s totally fine. Here are some other ideas for strength training at home.



    When I don’t have a lot of time to exercise, I love using ExerciseTV for a quick strength training workout. It has TONS of different workouts, ranging from mini to full length routines. My favorites are Jillian Michaels’s 30 Day Shred (actually, anything by Jillian Michael’s is really good) and Amy Dixon’s Bootcamp Body Makeover – Advanced. The workouts on ExerciseTV change all of the time, so there’s always something new and exciting to try out.


    I’ve never done P90X, but I’ve heard great things and know a lot of people who swear by it for strength training at home. Just thought I’d throw it out there!

    CNC Strength Training Workouts

    And, sometimes, I just make up my own workouts and do them at home or at the gym. (I get a lot of my ideas from magazines and online.) Check out the strength training workouts on my Fitness page— just scroll to the bottom of the page. There are a bunch!

    For me, I need some sort of plan of attack when strength training– otherwise, I wander around aimlessly and don’t get a good workout, which is why I like Body Pump so much. The instructor just tells me what to do! So, when I’m not in a class, I like to write down (or print out) the exercises that I plan to do before I start my workout. It keeps me on track and focused.

    What are your favorite ways to strength train at home?

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    { 104 comments… read them below or add one }

    Morgan May 12, 2011 at 10:09 am

    Exercise On Demand is my favorite!!! I fell in love with the Bethenny Yoga and Jay Johnson’s Bootcamp Abs!!!


    Melissa (MelissaLikesToEat) May 12, 2011 at 10:18 am

    I did all 90 days of P90X. It was a great workout but got extremely boring. Fortunately I did it with a friend which helped a lot!! I used to do “The Firm” workout videos all the time back in the day. Loved those!


    Tamara @ The Stretch Jean Incident. May 12, 2011 at 10:27 am

    I LOVE Jari’s DVDs (no pun intended)! I have almost all of them and yes, I’d definitely agree that they’re a great home alternative to Body Pump. I bought a barbell and a step because I fell in love with her workouts so quickly.

    I just started getting into Cathe (her HIIT DVD is so hard- I can’t get past the first level, haha), so I’ll definitely check out power hour.


    Tessa @ Amazing Asset May 12, 2011 at 10:44 am

    Hi Tina, thanks so much for these great ideas! The gym near me as such weird hours and I find myself getting a workout done in my room. I have a jump rope and a resistance band in my room and also 5 pound dumb bells. I love doing workouts while watching my favorite morning shows, it makes the times go by so fast :)


    Nicole May 12, 2011 at 10:45 am

    I just discovered bodyrock.tv it offers near daily workouts so it never gets boring. I think it’s similar to the P90 system and uses a lot of plyometrics…very challenge, but quick workouts!


    Rachel @ The Perseverance Diaries May 12, 2011 at 10:46 am

    I do not have any DVD’s for guidance for strength training at home so I usually will tear out pages from fitness magazines or pull up images online. I have a set of 5lb and 10lb weights so I do a lot of moves with those. My favorite is walking lunges with the 10lb weights. I live in a tiny NYC apartment so my walking lunges are pretty short-lived and I’m sure if anyone watched me doing this they would laugh.


    Tayler May 12, 2011 at 10:53 am

    I am also obsessed with Jari Love… especially Ripped 1000. P90X is rather expensive and extremely boring. It may be effective, but if you dread working out to it you aren’t going to stick with it and see the results. My favorite workout DVDs of all time are Physique 57. It gives you a long, lean, and toned body, but is far more effective than pilates or Tracy Anderson.


    Jamie aka "Sometimes Healthy" Girl May 12, 2011 at 10:56 am

    I love body bars! There is so much you can do with them! Also tricep dips and pushups are always a great go-to!


    Sara May 12, 2011 at 11:03 am

    I’m a Cathe Friedrich nut! I probably own 20 of her dvds and do one almost every day. While I love the energy of a live class, building up a home gym little by little is well worth the money, I think. Nothing beats being able to roll out of bed and get a killer workout in the comfort and privacy of your own home! If you like Power Hour, check out her newest weight dvd, High Reps!


    Becky May 12, 2011 at 11:05 am

    Thanks for the DVD recs! I’m an avid Body Pump goer too, but sometimes can’t make it to the gym. I’ve been doing some of their tracks I’ve found on youtube but it’s tough because you have to watch 6-7 different videos to get all the muscle groups done. I’m definitely going to check out RIP!


    Krissie J May 12, 2011 at 11:11 am

    Exercise TV On Demand is great! For at home strength training, I have dumbbells and resistance bands of various tensions, though I really prefer lifting at the gym the most. :)


    Dani May 12, 2011 at 11:19 am

    You need to try insanity it tightens and tones everything sans weights…and the fact that no matter what fitness level you are you will be lying on the floor in a puddle of your own sweat after it is done


    Megan@Dirty Dishes Daily May 12, 2011 at 11:45 am

    Thanks to netflix they have some great instant view dvds on there. I love anything that requires resistance bands.


    Jess May 12, 2011 at 11:59 am

    LOVE Cathe! She does great strength training workouts – if you are in for investing in a longer series of hers, I highly recommend her STS workouts (sort of like P90X but with a ton more variety). It’s a three and a half month program and it ROCKS my socks off. I also love Group Power which is just like Body Pump. I do most of my weights at home now, making up my routines as I go. But I do love the class experience and using DVDs too (great for form, especially)


    lynn @ the actor's diet May 12, 2011 at 12:03 pm

    i don’t work out anymore but when i did i loved gilad on exercise tv. old skool


    Shannon@hungrygazelle May 12, 2011 at 12:06 pm

    I would be lost without my gym because my motivation at home is so bad! I can always get out to go for a fun, but actually lifting at home is impossible for me. I’ve heard awesome things about Insanity though and have heard it’s a lot like being in a class.


    Beth @naturallyyoursbeth May 12, 2011 at 12:13 pm

    Thank you so much for posting this! I was just complaining the other day that my gym doesn’t have body pump! I do p90x, but am getting bored and ready to switch things up! Thanks girl :)


    Kristy@RunTheLongRoad May 12, 2011 at 12:14 pm

    Thanks for this post! I was actually looking into BodyPump classes this week and none are in my area. I’m bummed because I’ve been wanting to take a class for awhile now. At least I have some other options which are similar!


    Christine May 12, 2011 at 12:18 pm

    How ironic you would post this today! I JUST found the only gym in Canada that offers Bodypump and joined this week! My butt is sore in my office chair today!


    Sarah May 12, 2011 at 12:21 pm

    I’m impressed you’ve got a bosu ball at home! Go Tina!


    Paige @Running Around Normal May 12, 2011 at 12:25 pm

    Love love Jari Love’s DVD’s :) Big rave for that. Love Body Pump, too!


    Lauren May 12, 2011 at 12:26 pm

    Wow, I love this post. So useful!

    My gym doesn’t offer Body Pump (the only downside to my gym, actually), and I unfortunately find the sculpt class to be very slow and a little too basic. I’d love to be able to ‘recreate’ Body Pump at home with a DVD. Thank you for the great recommendations!

    PS — While this doesn’t necessarily qualify as strength training, I find the power yoga class that my gym does to produce incredible results! I always look (and feel) stronger after faithfully going to the class for several weeks.


    Mama Pea May 12, 2011 at 12:37 pm

    I do all my weight training at home before the house wakes up. The secret to my motivation? Reality TV. I can watch all the trashy shows I want guiltlessly.


    Hillary [Nutrition Nut on the Run] May 12, 2011 at 12:44 pm

    I don’t strength train at home… but have you tried kettlebells? They’re my new love and so much fun!


    Melissa @ Hungry Healthy Happy May 12, 2011 at 12:54 pm

    I really like Jackie Warner’s Power Circuit DVD for strength training at home. I love how it’s divided up so you can do just upper or lower body or abs–basically you can customize it to what you feel like working that day. Exercise TV is always a great option, too.


    Tina May 12, 2011 at 1:01 pm

    @Melissa @ Hungry Healthy Happy: Me too! I should have mentioned that DVD! It’s awesome!


    Jen @ Strides and Glides May 12, 2011 at 1:09 pm

    I love the Jari Love Ripped DVDs! Especially the new Extremely Ripped series. They are definitely my go to. I’ve also started doing Crossfit for a quick killer workout.


    Alyssa May 12, 2011 at 1:14 pm

    I love “Get Ripped!” My favorite is “Get Ripped 1000,” which incorporates cardio and strength training. I’ve also recently started “Rev Abs,” which has a nice strength training workout.
    Cathe Friedrich is pretty rockin’, I must say!


    Emily May 12, 2011 at 1:23 pm

    ALL of the Bob Harper dvd’s are amazing. I don’t belong to a gym and I use these almost exclusively for my workouts. I started with his four Inside Out Method dvd’s and have picked up a few of his others as well. The only equipment you need is handweights. I thought I was in decent shape when I popped the first one in, but I’ve been using them 6 days a week for almost four months and I still feel the burn every single time. LOVE them. I’ve been thinking about trying out the Jackie Warner dvd’s as well, so I’m glad to see that some of you like them!


    Mary @ Bites and Bliss May 12, 2011 at 1:25 pm

    This is awesome! I love BodyPump (even considering switching gyms to one I used to work out- and therefor really dislike- just because they offer Body Pump). If I could get the gear together it’d be cool to do it at home, too! Although I don’t think I’d be as motivated without someone pushing me through all the hard songs.


    'laina May 12, 2011 at 1:34 pm

    I’ve got about 65 lbs to lose and no cash to buy equipment, so I’ve really been getting into body weight workouts at bodyrock.tv. The extra weight I carry is definitely helping to get a good workout- I’m certainly good-sore the next day. It also helps that Zuzana is HOT and totally adorable.


    Cindy @ The Flipping Couple May 12, 2011 at 1:57 pm

    I’m totally addicted to Crossfit, so I don’t have the equipment to do it all at home (or the confidence to lift that much weight at home by myself!!). But since I’m only at Crossfit two days a week I do some good ol’ Jillian Michaels when I’m at home. Or run. Or do ridiculous numbers of push ups/sit ups/lunges.


    Aron May 12, 2011 at 2:06 pm

    I have a “home gym” and I am REALLY trying to use it more this summer. During marathon training I always slack on weights when my mileage increases but I just tell myself 10 minutes of arm weights is better than none! Love all your suggestions :)


    Wendy Irene May 12, 2011 at 2:09 pm

    I love working out in the comfort of my own home. I love to use Exercise TV as well. Have a beautiful day!


    Melissa May 12, 2011 at 2:37 pm

    Thanks Tina!! I looked into it and can’t find a gym that offers Body Pump and is convenient for me. Instead, one of the spare rooms in my new apartment is going to be my own makeshift home gym. So this will be super helpful. Need your help though..

    Can you recommend equipment I should get? I have a set of small dumbbells (6,8,10lbs) and a yoga mat. What else do I need? Barbells? Yoga ball or Bosu? Resistance bands?

    Would love your input. Thanks!


    Tina May 12, 2011 at 2:43 pm

    @Melissa: A set of heavy and light dumbbells would be great for any of the barbell workouts, so you should be all set!


    Emma (Namaste Everyday) May 12, 2011 at 2:40 pm

    thanks so much for the tips! I am trying to get into body pump, I need to find a gym around here that has it!


    Annette @ EnjoyYourHealthyLife May 12, 2011 at 2:42 pm

    I teach BodyPUMP….so yeah, have that covered 😉 But I love strength training! I have weights, resistance bands, and my very own body to power me through. Want to try Ripped and P90X sometimes soon, though


    Heather May 12, 2011 at 3:40 pm

    I took a month long boot camp class and learned a lot of exercises that way. After the class was over I went out and bought a set of weights, a resistance band and a balance ball to do the same exercises at home.


    Brooke @ bittersweetb May 12, 2011 at 4:12 pm

    This is a great post, thanks Tina! I have and love Jullian Michaels 30-day shred and boost metabolism dvds but have been looking for some new dvds. Now I have a bunch of great ones to choose from!


    erica May 12, 2011 at 4:48 pm

    i just started using exercise tv…i did a quick yoga workout and my body aches! :)


    Lindsay May 12, 2011 at 7:27 pm

    The Brooklyn Decker yoga on ExerciseTV is actually awesome (not sure if it’s still there). I was super hesitant to try it but I was sweating bullets by the end! Great tip, Tina!


    Kristi May 12, 2011 at 7:34 pm

    I love Jari Love’s DVDs they are just like body pump, but without having to go to the class.


    Meg May 12, 2011 at 11:12 pm

    I’m actually glad that you mentioned Get Ripped! because I bought it and watched the first 5 minutes and turned it off and haven’t looked at it since. Maybe I’ll give it another try!


    Erin May 13, 2011 at 8:36 am

    Check out lindsaybrin.com. She posts lots of at home workouts!!


    shelly October 14, 2011 at 2:37 pm

    check craigslist new york city for BP dvds.


    Patti March 4, 2012 at 9:47 am

    Thank you for the education. I attended body pump classes for 3 years. Totally addicted. Gym ownership changed and so did the class offerings. I can do the routine, but dvds help to keep me on track. I wanted bodypump dvds; I have barbell, weights, bench, step. I was not willing to pay $165 to Les Mills for a complete package when all I want are dvds. Thanks again for educating on alternatives.


    Jon March 5, 2012 at 4:52 pm

    Can’t I just do a circuit of the bodypump exercises going from one to the next doing 100. reps of each exercise at different speeds and get equal results as following the dvd?
    Do that 3 days alternate 2 cardio and rest 2.
    What do you think?


    Terra Simpson February 10, 2015 at 11:23 pm

    Now that I got my BP classes taken away from me as a result of a gym disaster that practically struck me hard that I don’t want to exercise. I had a classmate that walked in with her own set of weights. Are there any resources regarding BP DVDs or videos for home???? Any opinion would be wonderful. I felt like I’ve had my heart ripped out of my chest. That’s how much I loved it.


    Alexis March 12, 2015 at 9:49 am

    @Terra Simpson:
    I offer some Body Pump videos


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