cheeseburger absStudy after study has shown that multiple 10-minute intense workouts throughout the day are more beneficial than one 30-minute less intense one. Not only does it rev up your metabolism better, but it keeps at a higher rate for a longer period of time. But to get the maximum effect from an abbreviated workout, you have to increase the intensity.

Here are 5 non-equipment exercises that you can fit into a short workout:
• 50 jumping jacks
• 15 squats
• 15 push-ups
• 15 lunges
• 15 chair-dips

Perform three sets of each exercise. Take a short 10 second break between each set.

Jumping Jacks

Also known as side-straddle hops, this is the same exercise you did as a kid. From the standing position, arms at your side and legs together, jump up and spread your legs to shoulder-width apart or more. At the same time raise your arms over your head and touch your hands together. Then jump up again and return to the starting position.


The starting position for this exercise is standing up straight, feet shoulder-width apart and arms stretched outward in front of you with your palms facing down. Inhale, tighten your abdominal core muscles and while keeping your back straight as possible, bend at the knees while looking straight ahead. Once your butt is even with your knees, exhale and return to the starting position.


These can be started from the position of either your knees on the floor, or knees up and legs in a straight line with your back. With your weight resting on your arms and keeping your back straight (like you had a board strapped to your back), bend your elbows and lower yourself down to the position where your upper arms are parallel to the floor. Push yourself back up to the starting position.


From the starting position of standing up, take one big step forward making sure to keep your back straight. Bend your forward knee to about 90 degrees. At the same time, on your other leg, drop the back knee toward the floor, but not touch the floor. Now, push yourself off with your front foot and back to the starting position.

Chair Dips

Put 2 chairs back to back & dip in between them. Make sure the chairs are stable enough so you don’t fall. Dips can be better than pushups. How do I Dip? Raise yourself on 2 chairs with elbows locked. (If this seems too challenging, have a third chair in front of you, and put one of your feet on it to assist your press. Don’t turn it into a single leg squat exercise though.) Lower yourself until your shoulders are lower than your elbows. Straighten your arms to push yourself up. You are moving your body through space, and that is always a great idea.

Between all of these exercises, you get a good workout of your upper and lower large muscle groups in addition to working your abdominal core in ten minutes of time. Perform the three sets in circuit training fashion, meaning to run through all of the exercises one-time before going back to do the first one again, and enjoy the burn!

What are your favorite “short routines?”

Al Bargen

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