Can you really get a benefit from a 10-minute workout? By itself, a short workout won’t burn many calories, but as part of a regular exercise program, these fitness rourtines can provide many of health benefits you need to stay physically fit. Performing two to three 10- to 15-minute workouts per day can substitute for a 30-minute workout, according to the American Heart Association.
The key to getting the most out of a 10-minute workout is to combine high-intensity cardio exercise with resistance to work your heart, lungs and muscles at the same time. Instead of a steady-state aerobic routine, such as jogging on a treadmill or using an elliptical or exercise bike, perform a 10-minute circuit training routine. A traditional cardio machine workout will help you maintain your heart health, but a circuit-training routine with resistance will burn more calories and build more muscle.
Just because you’ve only got 10 minutes doesn’t mean it’s OK to start your workout at a high heart rate. Take at least one minute to warm up using moderate intensity jogging in place, butt kicks and jumping jacks. Gradually raise your heart rate, breathing and body temperature while you warm and stretch your muscles. Don’t static stretch!
10-Minute Circuit Training
Circuit training is a workout format that consists of one-minute exercises, followed by a short break before you start another exercise. To create a 10-minute circuit training routine, alternate upper-body and lower-body exercises so you can work hard without fatiguing your muscles to failure. Use enough weight so that it’s difficult to finish the last few reps, but an amount that lets you perform your reps quickly. You want to raise your heart rate with many, quick repetitions while building muscle at the same time.
Perform 60 seconds of eight of the following exercises:
- Triceps extensions
- Squat Jumps
- Biceps Curls
- Dumbbell deadlifts
- Bench dips
- Running Stairs
- Dumbbell flys
- Split Jumps
- Lateral arm raises
- Box Jumps
Finish your workout with one minute of light jogging in place and/or a thorough stretch of your muscles. Don’t stretch before you exercise or you’ll desensitize your muscles for the duration of your workout.
Cardio Workout Alternative
If you don’t have the strength to do body-weight, resistance band or dumbbell exercises, use a cardio machine or perform other cardio exercises after a one- to two-minute warmup. Raise the resistance settign on your cardio machine to the highest level you can use without fatiguing to failure. Consider a low-resistance circuit-training cardio workout, moving from running stairs to skipping rope to jumping jacks to butt kicks, repeating each exercise twice. Another way to combine steady-state cardio with resistance is to try kettlebell swinging, which works your lower-body, core and upper-body while you burn calories.
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