Reviewed by the BioHackers Lab Team | Last updated: May 25, 2020

In today’s interview I get to speak with the man behind the Bodyweight Strength Training YouTube channel Jerry Teixeira, about how you can build strength at home without the use of fancy gym equipment.

Jerry is very passionate about helping people improve their longevity and quality of life by helping them build strong, lean muscles using minimalist fitness methods.

When Jerry found he was lacking the time to go to the gym, he decided he would design an efficient fitness routine that he could do anywhere.

Using progressive calisthenics he gained a strong physique and many people wanted to know his secret.

Today, Jerry shares what he has learned about building strength using your body weight as resistance.

Whether you are a complete beginner or an advanced athlete, Jerry can teach you how to modify movements for your skill level.

If you know someone who is interested in learning more about:

  • How to build strength from home without equipment
  • What is progressive calisthenics
  • Why compound movements are crucial
  • Should you train to muscle failure
  • How often should you train 
  • How diet influences training
  • Tips on recovery
  • When is a good time to stretch
  • How to use foam rollers to help with delayed onset muscle soreness

Then this interview is for them.

I really enjoyed talking to Jerry and his personalised approach. He has some great tips and I love that he made all this information available for everyone on his channel making it easy to get moving and start building stronger muscles.

Special thanks to Jerry for joining me on the show.

Enjoy the episode!

Listen to The Podcast Episode

Hear episode 109 interview directly on your favorite podcast app by clicking a link below:

Jerry Teixeira: From The Bodyweight Strength Training Channel

Follow, or find out more about Jerry on these official links:

Show Notes with Timestamp Links

Find summarised highlights of what we talk about during the interview.

Use the clickable timestamp links to jump directly to those points in the audio file below:

[00:08] – Introducing, Jerry Teixeira (JT), the man behind the YouTube channel Bodyweight Strength Training where he shares videos showing what he does to get strong, lean and healthy using callisthenics and his diet.

[03:29] – JT explains what his approach to minimalist fitness is and how you can get superior results without using any gym equipment. It is about focusing on things that are going to give you the best results in the minimum amount of time.

[06:38] – It is more then just body weight fitness; in general we want to be doing compound movements to get the best and fastest results. JT explains this concept using a pull-up as an example.

[08:50] – Whatever your training goals and motivations are (longevity, strength etc.), in the interest of efficiency, your time is better spent focusing on compound movements. JT recommends focusing on those.

[11:20] – JT explains that an underlying principle behind Bodyweight Strength Training is that the majority of it is full body and requires multiple joints and muscle groupings to do. This is key to building strength all over.

[15:58] – With bodyweight strength training there is also less chance of an injury and can be safely performed at home. While there are benefits to movements such as deadlifts and loaded squats, we need to be careful and seek a professional to learn how to perform them properly to avoid injury.

[18:09] – JT explains where people should start if they have a lot of weight to lose. He has videos on YouTube, sorted into playlists, with the eight primary movement patterns he believes should be incorporated.

Tip: Each playlist starts at beginner level and can be performed regardless of your power to weight ratio or skill level.

[24:08] – While it is not necessary to work to muscle failure, we do need to do enough repetitions to stimulate muscle growth. This means it is important to get to a point where you feel the movement you are doing takes some work and is increasingly difficult.

[27:48] – You don’t need a heavy weight to build muscle; a lot of repetitions will do it, however, this method won’t build strength. JT explains this is why he favours increasing difficulty rather than repetitions and his scaling system gives people the tools to do this at home without equipment.

[29:45] – JT’s passion is longevity in humans. While all forms of physical activity are strongly correlated with human longevity, the strongest correlation is seen with strength.

[31:31] – Having a good amount of muscle is beneficial for multiple reasons, one of them being sarcopenia and preventing age related muscle loss. This also means we are better at recovering from injuries and illnesses.

[33:38] – If you prefer endurance type training you should make that your focus as you will find more enjoyment from it. Just add a bit of compound movement training to make yourself stronger. The same is true vice-versa. Interesting point is that larger muscles contain more mitochondria!

[35:31] – The two foundations of better health are moving your body and eating better.

[38:00] – Age related decline in strength and muscle mass takes hold at a more advanced age. It is a good idea to try to get a head start on preserving muscles. With biohacking we try to improve the quality of our lives for as long as possible, strength is an important part of this.

[40:44] – JT talks about some of the benefits of callisthenics. The progressive nature of learning a new skill makes it fun and for people with kids, a lot of the time they will want to get involved. You are instilling positive habits for them.

[43:40] – Another great thing is that you can perform the exercises outside. When we exercise consistently we start to crave it, JT explains that this is especially true for exercising outside in nature.

Tip: While you are at it take your shoes off and do some grounding, and make sure to soak up some vitamin D from the sun

[45:54] – There is a concept of barefoot fitness; training the muscles in your feet. JT explains he used to have back issues due to an underdeveloped area he had. This improved when he addressed the weak areas he had.

[48:44] – Any amount of exercise you can do is better than none at all. Research has shown that even three minute sessions resulted in improvements in biomarkers in de-conditioned adults. JT recommends starting with his 5min training session and doing it every day so that you are not sore, for 30 days to establish a habit.

Tip: If you are sore the next day after training don’t train until you feel better, but do try active recovery such as walking or stretching to speed up recovery.

[52:33] – JT explains that everybody has a different recovery rate and some people can have higher training volumes than others. It is important to learn what your specific recovery ability is.

Tip: Signs and symptoms of going through enhanced stress are the same as you would get from over-training/under-recovery.

[54:21] – Diet also influences recovery. Protein for example facilitates better recovery. Dieting on the other hand is already stressing the body so the exercise volume should be lower.

Tip: The more stress you are under the more you should reduce your exercise.

[56:53] – Stretching is an area people have some disagreements about. Static stretching is beneficial when done after strength training or as a separate activity, but not as a warm-up.

Tip: Using a foam roller is great for self massaging and helping with delayed onset muscle soreness.

[59:19] – For anyone wanting to find out more, get started with the training exercises, or follow JT you can find him on Twitter (he is also on Instagram but not as active), YouTube (for all of his free content) or his Body Weight Strength website.