10 Quick And Easy Workouts For When You’re Short On Time

Feb 9, 2017 //

Don’t have time to spend hours at the gym? Want to make the most out of your quick workouts? This is for you.

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Here are 10 of the easiest workouts ever that don’t chintz out on results. They range from one to 10 minutes. It’s up to you to choose how much time you’ve got to dedicate to exercise on any given day, but before you go straight for the 60-second sesh, consider these tips first:

  • Most short workouts tend to be HIIT-style (high-intensity interval training), such as Tabata. If you’re a newbie, you will want to ease yourself into these workouts. Take the time to learn perfect form first, then work your way up to higher intensity programs.
  • Just because a workout is quick, doesn’t mean you’re not allowed to take rest or water breaks when your body needs the recovery time. Listen to your body and do what you can.
  • One way to increase intensity without running out of breath is to focus on engaging the muscles. Doing crunches? Really tighten your abs as you raise your shoulders off the floor.
  • Shorter doesn’t always mean easier. Sure, it will be over faster, but you’ll have to work yourself to exhaustion in order to make any workout that is shorter than 10 minutes effective. Be prepared to sweat.
  • You may be focusing on the clock or counting reps, but don’t forget proper form and to breathe.

1. The One-Minute Full-Body Workout

There’s NO excuse to not exercise with this one-minute workout! The goal of this workout is to complete it in one minute, though the first few times you do it, it might admittedly take double that. Start off with four power push-up planks (hold a plank for 8 seconds, do two push-ups, walk your feet to your hands, stand up, squat down into plank to do the move all over again), then do a 10-second hold superman (on your stomach, lifting arms and legs off floor) and finish off with 10 bicycle crunches.

2. Two-Minute Workout For Stronger Abs

Some quick workouts will use the precious time to really hone in on toning specific body parts, like with this two-minute ab workout: do as many reps as you can for 20 seconds for each exercising, including crunches, knee-to-elbow crunches, flutter kicks, scissors, hundreds and sitting twists. Repeat it two or three times for a really killer ab workout.

3. Three-Minute Workout With Joel Harper

This simple, equipment-free workout is a great one for beginners. The three minutes includes some dynamic warm-up stretching moves, as well as bodyweight strengthening, like squats, sit-ups and modified push-ups. And the best part: you don’t have to hit pause, as the video takes you through the entire workout.

4. The Four-Minute Workout

The set-up of this four-minute program is very straight-forward. You do four exercises for one minute each. But before you go making up your own four move workout, consider how long 60 seconds is when doing the same exercise over and over again. This workout, however, uses compound exercises: sumo squats with foot drag, triceps dips with a leg extension, reverse lunges with a leg lift, and modified push-ups with knee crunch. It’s like doing eight exercises.

5. Your Five-Minute Workout

This five-minute regime promises to improve flexibility, improve posture and strengthen muscles. So set your phone timer, and do this sequence for five minutes: downward dog (on hands and feet with butt pointed up), upward dog (lower body on floor, hands supporting the upper body to stand tall), plank (the top part of push-up), side plank (raise one arm up, rotating the torso and stacking the feet), and chaturanga (bent elbow plank). Each pose should take five breathes, about one minute.

6. Six-Minute Circuit Workout Everyone Can Do

Six minutes is enough time for this circuit. Grab a set of dumbbells (a challenging, but comfortable, weight), and do each exercise for 30 seconds. Short breaks between each move are permitted. Do 30 seconds of burpees, rows, jumping jacks, push-ups, squats, step-ups, running in place, lunges, planks and chest presses — boom, a speedy, but effective, workout.

7. The Scientific Seven-Minute Workout

20-Minute Cardio Workout
20-Minute Cardio Workout

Could seven minutes replace a long cardio and strength-training workout? The American College of Sports Medicine’s Health & Fitness Journal seems to think so with this short, 12-exercise workout. It’s 30 seconds each move, and you get 10 seconds rest between exercises. Intensity level should be about an eight out of 10. Here are the moves: jumping jacks, wall sits, push-ups, crunches, step-ups, squats, triceps dips, planks, high knees, lunges, push-up rotation and side planks.

8. Eight-Minute Yoga Sequence For Intense Muscle Burn

Think yoga is just for stretching? This eight-minute routine is about toning and weight loss. This sequence incorporates a variety of strengthening moves, like planks, lunges, trunk twists, and more. It’s a hard one, so make sure that your muscles are warm before and that you stretch afterward. You’ll really appreciate child’s pose at the end of this one.

9. Nine-Minute Miracle Workout

This fast, nine-minute miracle workout has a big focus on form and counting reps. Just put the timer on your phone for nine minutes and see how many rounds of four exercises you can do as you increase reps by two, starting at two (two, four, six, eight, 10, 12, 14 and so on).

To break it down: You do two reps of twisting lunges, commander push-ups, squat jacks, and leg levers (leg raises) for one round. Round two, you do the same exercises but with four reps. Round three is six reps, and round four is eight, and so on. If you can, stay with the trainer’s momentum in the video.

10. 10-Minute Workout To Sculpt Your Butt And Abs

If you’re short on time, it makes sense to choose exercises that target the biggest muscle groups – it’ll burn the most calories and build strength from the ground up. And compound movements (multi-joint movements) activate more muscles, too. This 10-minute butt-and-abs workout includes the following movements: side lunge to curtsey squat (10 reps each side), sumo squats (20 reps), running man (16 to 20 reps each side), bicycle crunches (20 to 30 reps) and single-leg toe touches (three to for sets of five reps each side), jackknives (three sets of 12 to 15 reps).