A workout that boosts your fitness and tones your whole body doesn’t have to take hours – you really can get in shape in just 15 minutes
I’ve selected five exercises to work your upper body, lower body and core, as well as increasing your cardio fitness. For best results, aim to stay as engaged as you can throughout the workout, keeping rest to a minimum. This is possible because the exercises are ordered in a way to ensure that while one part of your body is working, the remaining parts are recovering. Perform 30 seconds of each exercise in Pair A, followed by 30 seconds of mountain climbers. Repeat this six times then move onto Pair B, followed by another set of 30 seconds of mountain climbers, performing another six rounds to complete the workout.
13 Begin standing with your feet hip-distance apart, holding a dumbbell in each hand for added difficulty. Take a step forward with your right foot, pausing for a second to get your balance if necessary, then bend your hips and knees to come into a lunge.
2. Your back knee should be just above the floor, with both hips and knees bent to 90 degrees, your torso upright and in line with your back thigh. Your front knee should not come further forward than your toes and remain in line with your ankle (rather than moving in or out to the side).
3. Push through the front foot, straightening your legs to return to the start, then repeat on the other leg to complete one rep.
1. Begin standing, holding a dumbbell in each hand with your arms straight above your head and your palms facing each other.
2. Bend your elbows to 90 degrees, taking your hands behind your head while trying to keep your upper arms pointing straight upwards.
3. Straighten your arms to return to the start and repeat.
4. Aim to keep your shoulders down away from your ears throughout, as well as trying to not arch your lower back or allowing your chest to move upwards or stick out.
Squat and press
1. Begin standing with your feet a little wider than hip-width apart, holding dumbbells in each hand, level with your shoulders.
2. Bend your hips and knees to come into a squat position, aiming to reach a point where your hips are a little higher than your knees, with your back straight. Make sure the whole of your foot remains in contact with the floor, and your knees track in line with your toes.
3. Straighten your legs to return to standing and press the dumbbells overhead. Bend your arms to return to the starting position, then repeat.
1. From the top of a push-up position, step one foot in towards your hands. This is your starting position.
2. Jump the front foot back, while bringing the other foot forwards, then quickly reverse the movement.
3. Continue, moving as fast as you can, staying on the balls of your feet. Try to straighten the back leg with each rep, without allowing the back foot to creep closer to your hands as the set progresses. Count how many reps you do in 30 seconds and aim to reach, or exceed, this target with each successive set.
Single -arm row
1. Holding a dumbbell in your right hand, begin with your left hand and lower your left leg on a bench, with your hip directly above your knee and your shoulder directly above your wrist. Your right foot should be placed firmly on the floor, with the knee bent slightly so that your hips are level. When viewed from the side, your back should be straight.
2. Initiate the movement by squeezing between your shoulder blades then bend your right arm to bring the dumbbell towards your lower ribs, keeping your elbow close to your side as you do so. Reverse the movement to return to the start, then repeat.
“I started doing workout DVDs specifically for new mums when I was one – I couldn’t leave the house for two hours to go to the gym. The great thing about a home workout is that you’re already at home and that no one is watching you – sometimes, I’ve been known to do a workout in a bra, pants and bare feet. No one gives a hoot what you look like. Also, when you go to the gym, you often see those perfect gym bunnies who are brilliant at everything and know what equipment they’re using – I hate all of that because you feel inadequate before you’ve even done a workout! My advice is to get a mat to exercise on at home so you don’t slip as much, and also get some hand weights. When I was doing home workouts before I made my own DVDs, I used cans of baked beans or water bottles, but they are never quite going to weigh enough and you’re not going to see the benefits that you would from a 2-3kg weight.”
Professional PT Kristoph Thompson guides us through a quick and easy home workout each month. If you enjoyed this one, why not share your fitness results over on Facebook @healthand wellbeingmag