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CRUNCH TIME! Total Body Workouts In 20 Minutes

December 13, 2013 6 min read

One of the BIGGEST reasons why people say they don't work out on a regular basis, if at all, is nothing other than….wait for it….

THEY DON'T HAVE THE TIME.

I think mainly because they feel they have to devote 30 minutes or more to every workout. The idea of lacing up and getting an efficient and effective workout in, in under 30 minutes, may not seem possible or not even worth it, since some are STILL used to working out for long periods of time doing steady state work.

This couldn't be FURTHER from the truth! Your options are really limitless! From HIIT to Metabolic training, you can put an efficient and HIGHLY effective workout together in no time at all.

When I take a winter hiatus from teaching boot camp classes, the one thing I tell my clients is to CONTINUE doing what we do in class, i.e. the HIIT/Metabolic training. It will keep you conditioned, in shape and motivated since you can change them around constantly, so the risk of 'getting bored' lessens since you can switch up your workouts daily and/or weekly.

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Whether it's HIIT training or Metabolic training, you can get a full body workout in less time, and really push your body to the limit, where by the end, you are breathless, fatigued and DONE! But, that's also a fantastic feeling too especially since you can complete these types of workouts in less then 20 minutes. Whereas, HIIT workouts might include more cardio/body weight resistance type moves, with metabolic training the subject usually is lifting as heavy as possible for a period of time, with little rest in between. Both though, are very similar and very effective when done properly. Best of all, with this type of training, you create an 'after burn effect,' where your body increases it's metabolic effect between 10%-25% for the next 48 hours after. SO, you may torch several hundred calories DURING the workout, but you will CONTINUE to burn hundreds of extra calories post workout! Who wouldn't love that?!

Over the course of my training and teaching, I have put together many HIIT and Metabolic workouts which I have included below. I also scour the web to collect some really effective workouts that I borrow for my boot camp classes too. This is a great collection to use and switch up as you go!

(If there are any exercises you are unfamiliar with, you can google them or youtube them and get great tutorials as needed).  

CIRCUIT WORKOUTS WITH NO EQUIPMENT

(A superset is a great way to workout if you have limited time. A superset pairs two different exercises that should be performed back to back with little, or no rest.Each cycle should take you two minutes. If you can do ten cycles of this you will total 300 pushups and 400 crunches. Not bad for 20 minutes! No resting in between sets! You basically rest by doing crunches. The two supersets, (taken from military.com), are great to alternate every other day.

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#1

Pushup/Crunch Superset:Repeat 10 cycles of:- 10 regular pushups - 10 crunches - 10 wide pushups - 10 crunches - 10 tricep pushups - 10/10 Left/Right crunches

Leg / ab Superset: Repeat 5 cycles of:- 20 squats - 20 crunches - 10 lunges per leg - 10 crunches - 20 calf raises - 20 crunches

 #2

Back on Pointe, offers workouts on Pinterest such as the one below. Great way to stay on track each day! You can repeat the exercises listed for each day until the 20 minutes are up. Challenge yourself!

#3

CREATE YOUR OWN!!

These type of workouts are very simple to put together. Think of doing maybe 6 different exercises for 30 seconds each (3minutes total), and repeating 6 times. OR 6 different exercises, for 45 seconds (4.5 minutes total), and repeating about 4times WITHOUT rest if possible. If you need to take 15-30 seconds rest, rest AFTER you complete 1 round (or the 6 exercises). This is how I structured my warmups in my boot camp classes. Exercises can range from high knees, push ups, Mt. climbers, tuck jumps, pike push ups, jump squats, jump lunges, plank holds, crunches (any ab work really), jacks, star jumps, jogging in place, log jumps etc. etc.

CIRCUIT WORKOUTS WITH  EQUIPMENT

#1

Perform 2-3 Sets of each Superset (about 30-45 seconds rest between supersets), shoot for 10-15 reps. Do a quick warm up before completing.

Superset #1 Barbell SquatStanding Dumbbell Shoulder PressSuperset #2Standard Lunges Incline Dumbbell Bench Press Superset #3Single Arm Dumbbell Row V Up (lying flat on the ground keeping your legs straight, bring your legs off the ground 2 feet and simultaneously crunch up, arms extended, and touch your knees, then back down).

At home? Replace the barbell squat with dumbbell squats with dumbbells at your sides when you squat down, back straight, head facing forward.

 #2

Try and go as heavy with the weight as you can! Remember, you're not lifting heavy enough if you can get to 15-20 reps and keep going with ease. Especially if you want an intense and efficient workout, GO heavy for each exercise! You are only completing each one ONE time!

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     #3

This one is my own circuits I called a "SUPERHERO" circuit, since it was one of the ones I used when I trained for the Superhero 1/2 Marathon this past May! Remember, GO heavy on the weight! Repeat only 2x for around a 20 minute workout. And yes, that's me finishing the race, in the pouring rain, dressed like Robin. Finished in about 1hour, 45 minutes and I attribute MUCH of my speed work to all the HIIT training I did prior to race.
  

CIRCUIT WORKOUTS ON THE TREADMILL OR TRACK

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How much running can you do in 20 minutes? Maybe 1-3 miles, maybe more? Try this one if you want to run.

- Run 400 Meters (@ 1 time around track) - 30 pushups (for more intensity, put feet up on bench and hands on ground) - 30 dips (off bench, or if no bench, with hands behind you, butt off ground. (Make sure elbows bend as close to 90 degrees as possible) - 30 alternating Step ups on bench

REPEAT the above circuit until the 20 minutes are up. If you are stuck on time and want to get MORE running in, decrease the reps each time by 5-10 reps. For instance, 2nd round would be Run 400 Meters, 20-25 pushups, 20-25 dips, 20-25 step ups. 3rd round would be 10-15 reps. 4th round, 5-10 reps.

#2 & #3

The COUNT UP TRACK WORKOUT, I have done as well. It will take you longer to complete this one depending on how fast you run. Don't feel like you HAVE to run a full mile to start for your warm up. You can always do an easy jog for about 400 meters (1x around track) instead. I completed this as part of my training for the 1/2 marathon as well.

The TRACK STAR workout, you are running about 2 miles in total, so again, if you are short on time cut the running in 1/2. So instead of warming up with 800 meter run (2x around track), shoot for 400 meters. Pairing the walking lunges throughout your running is a KILLER! Make sure though you have proper form with the lunges. Make sure your front knee does NOT go beyond the toe and you are taking a wide enough step forward when lunging.

 

Proper form in walking lunges. Try keeping hands behind head as well and NOT letting shoulders and chest fall forward.
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As you can see, you can do quite a bit in as little as 20 minutes. These workouts are a bit advanced and as always, you should consult your doctor before starting an exercise program, especially if you have not exercised in several years. Of course you can create your own program using these exercise ideas for your own fitness level or search thru the COUNTLESS options on Bodyrocktv or Dailyhiit!  Push yourself every set until you can no longer perform the exercise. Do these types of workouts 2-3 times a week and you WILL see a difference!  

 

Alright so now you have a plethora of quick workouts to choose from. What else are you struggling with? If you want to keep seeing results and MAINTAIN them, you need to stay active and keep your diet in check! And that’s what we’re here for.

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