While it might be nice to spend hours every day in the gym, working towards your goals, it isn’t always possible. Sometimes work, family commitments, and other things come up that stop us from training for quite as long as we’d like to. Well, don’t worry, because I’ve got you covered. This article is all about my 15-minute full body workout.
The workout is short, simple, and intense, allowing you to build some great muscular endurance and develop some stamina while you’re at it.
Let’s be honest
Alright, let’s start with a quick dose of realism – you’re not going to get super-fit, super-jacked, or super-strong with a 15-minute workout. Don’t get me wrong, this is an awesome workout (I’ve done it myself plenty of times), but we’ve got to be honest about how much you can accomplish in such a short amount of time.
So if you’re looking to step on stage any time soon, 15 minutes a few times a week isn’t gonna cut it. Similarly, if you’re looking to compete at weightlifting or powerlifting, this isn’t gonna work for you either.
So what will this workout accomplish?
This workout is great for full-body muscular endurance. You’ll blast through various exercises, get your heart rate up high, and build plenty of stamina. You might also get a little bit of hypertrophy (muscle growth), depending on your training level.
When and what is this workout for?
This workout is perfect for when you’re in a rush or super-busy. As the title suggests, it’s perfect to fit in before work, but it would work just as well on your lunch break or in the evening when you get home. It’s also great for busy parents without a huge amount of spare time.
Another handy use for this workout is to keep up your general conditioning and fitness while you’re on holiday or away from the gym. You could even throw in a couple of these workouts on a “rest” or “deload” week in between heavier and more intensive training programmes.
What ability level is this workout for?
This workout is deliberately designed using times rather than a specific number of repetitions, meaning that your ability level doesn’t matter. If you’re fitter and stronger, you make your workout tougher by completing more work in the set amount of time, whereas if you’re a beginner, you can perform less work in the time given.
The exercises (in order)
Squats – 1 minute – a great exercise for working your legs, specifically your quads and glutes. These will also get your heart rate up pretty nicely.
Press-ups – 1 minute – a great exercise for your chest and triceps. Expect to get a serious pump after a minute’s worth of work.
Lunges – 1 minute – your third exercise focuses on the lower body again. It’s also a great way to develop coordination and balance.
Cable rows – 1 minute – since you did lots of pushing with all those press-ups, it’s time to balance up your body by doing plenty of pulling movements. This exercise will really work your back, specifically muscles such as your rhomboids and lats.
Plank – hold up to 1 minute – a great core exercise to help build strength and stability through your midsection. Just remember to keep your body in a straight line, with your abdominal muscles and glute (butt) muscles engaged.
Mountain climbers – 1 minute – this exercise is a quick and effective burst of cardio to get your heart rate skyrocketing and build stamina.
What if some of these are too hard?
- If you can’t do full press-ups yet, I recommend doing assisted press-ups with your knees on the floor. When they get too easy, you can move to negative press-ups, which is where you slowly control the downwards portion of the press-up until you get to the floor, then reset back to the top and repeat.
- If you struggle for balance with the squats or lunges, you can always try holding onto something for assistance.
What if some of these are too easy?
Feeling like a bit of a bad-ass? Here are some sneaky variations to make your workout tougher.
- Jumping squats. Control your squat all the way down to the bottom, then explode upwards into a jump. Control the landing, then repeat.
- Diamond press-ups. Move your hands into a close grip diamond position and perform your press-ups like this. The new angle will make your triceps work loads harder. Be prepared for a serious muscle burn!
- Jumping lunges. Explode upwards after each lunge and quickly switch your legs in mid-air to land on the other leg. This one is tough!
Total workout time
The workout involves six exercises in total, making one round exactly six minutes long. In 15 minutes this means that you can perform 2 rounds, with a couple of minutes in between to catch your breath.
Personally, I like to allow 20 minutes in total, just so that I can do a quick warm-up beforehand.
Time to go train!
That’s it – my 15-minute full body workout in all its glory! It’s not going to make you into a professional athlete any time soon, but if you’re looking to build some muscular endurance, add a little size, and significantly improve your stamina, this should be perfect for you. Plus, since it’s so short you’ve got no excuses for not training!
Have you tried the workout yet?