The “I Have No Time to Work Out” Workout

Don’t have time for a workout? You can still burn calories, lose weight, and get into great shape with this simple “I have no time to work out” workout!

Don’t let your busy schedule keep you from enjoying an effective workout. With some simple moves and exercises, you can increase your metabolism and build muscle in less than twenty minutes every day!

If you find yourself pressed for time these days, you’re certainly not alone! Despite all our modern-day appliances and conveniences, women typically have less time for themselves as they often work fulltime, are taking care of the home and children and even aging parents, and may want to devote time to volunteer work, PTA, and so on.

This doesn’t mean that you can’t fit in a workout no matter how busy your day! If you choose a quality routine you will enjoy tremendous benefits in a fraction of the time. Check out this “I have no time to work out” workout that will get your metabolism revving and help to build muscle. For this workout, you only need a set of comfortable but challenging hand weights, usually about 15 pounds for most women.

#1 Start With a Warm-up

Middle aged woman stretching in the woods on a dirt road before a run

An active warm-up is best for a short workout, so march in place quickly for three minutes. This will get your blood flowing and help to loosen your muscles in the legs. Your metabolism will also start to increase as soon as you start marching, so you’re not wasting any time!

After marching, stretch your upper body by reaching your right hand over your head and curving it over your left shoulder while stretching your right leg out next to you. Repeat the movement with your left hand and left leg, three times for each arm.

#2 Squats

Squats are some of the best exercises you can do when you have no time to work out, as they target all the muscles in your legs quickly and efficiently. To perform a proper squat, stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, hands on your hips. Bend at the knees while keeping the back upright but relaxed. Return to your starting position.

You’ll feel your leg muscles and even your butt being stretched and challenged during this movement. Repeat it for a set of three. If it’s too challenging, don’t hesitate to hold a chair or table with one hand for balance.

#3 Jumping

Girl jumping on the rope in the park

You now need to ramp up your cardio again, so try jumping for a great challenge. If you have a jump rope you can use it for a full five minutes, and you should feel your heart rate increasing during this time. If you don’t have a jump rope, try jumping jacks. These too increase your heart rate and are very challenging.

#4 Work the Arms

Now you can work the arms while giving yourself a quick rest. Using your hand weights, perform two sets of bicep curls, 6 reps each. A proper bicep curl is performed with your upper arm against your body and immobile; you need to pivot at the elbow and not the shoulder. Notice how the bicep contracts with each movement.

To work your triceps, you’ll perform an overhead curl. To do this, use one weight in your right hand. Point your arm straight up and then bend the elbow so that your upper arm is behind you; your elbow should be next to your forehead and your hand at the back of your shoulder. Gently support your right arm with your left hand as you gently move your right hand back and straight up, pivoting at the elbow. You’ll feel your triceps curl and extend. Repeat this move 6 times each with each arm.

#5 Back to Cardio

You need to get your heart rate back up again after working your arms, so march in place again for another three minutes or do another set of jump roping or jumping jacks. Be sure you’re challenging yourself during this time as you want to have some exertion for maximum benefit; don’t dawdle or rest too long in the middle of this set.

#6 Work the Abs

womans fit abs

Because you don’t have too much time to work the abs, you can try a very simple move that will target all the muscles effectively. Lie on your back with your legs outstretched and your feet together, then gently pick your feet off the ground just a few inches. Your abs will contract to support your legs. Hold this position for a count of twenty, then rest, then repeat two more times.

Once you’ve done this set of three reps, put your legs straight in the air, feet still together. Pivot at the hips and make small circles in the air with your feet, never making the circles wider than your hips, eight times in one direction and then eight times in the other. This will work all your ab muscles together.

#7 Stretch and You’re Done!

A quick stretch will help your muscles start healing from your workout, so try the down dog yoga position. While still on the floor, roll over and put your hands out in front of you, feet stretched behind you and then lift yourself up so just your hands and feet are touching the floor. Relax your back and neck, and feel the stretch in your legs and arms. Hold this position for at least 30 seconds.

This entire workout will take you less than twenty minutes and can be done anywhere with no fancy equipment other than your hand weights. If you have time, repeat it for added benefit or toss in some additional exercises such as crunches or more cardio.

Are you excited to try this workout? How do you  get in your exercise when you’re pressed for time, and how would you encourage other women to do the same? Share in the comments below!

About the author

Rachel G

Rachel is a health and fitness enthusiast with interests in world culture, psychology, and philosophy, she’s also a romantic with a passion for writing and for helping women live the best life possible.

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