When it comes to working out there are many different ways one could accomplish their fitness goals, and a simple and easy way is by minimalist workout routines. These are a great way to squeeze in a quick workout into your busy life and still achieve the goals you are looking for, whether losing fat or gaining muscle. A minimalist workout consists of shorter bursts of exercises that challenge the entire body. These workouts won’t take up half of your day, they can be done at home and can be as short as 7 minutes! Instead of several different exercises focusing on one muscle group, the exercise recommendations are compound movements all aimed towards different muscle groups to ensure a complete, whole-body workout.
Do What Makes you Feel Best
There is no perfect way to work out because everyone has a different goal in their fitness journey and you need to find what will best fit you. Mixing up your programs every week can still give you the benefits of exercise. There is no need to have a specific routine or plan for working out. The main goal is to be sure you are moving from one exercise to the next in about 30 seconds. This is because these quick movements back-to-back increase your heart rate to help you build muscle mass and lose fat. When your heart rate is constantly at a faster pace for a period of time it boosts your endurance and improves your cardiovascular system.
Exercising relieves stress and releases endorphins to make us feel happier and accomplished. So, no matter the workout you will still feel revived and refreshed as long as you are actively moving and increasing your heartbeat.
Minimal Compound Movements
Compound movements are the necessary exercises that should be added to every workout because they work more than one muscle group at once. These key movements are necessary for a minimalist workout when choosing to run, walk, lift weights, or cross-fit. They focus on multiple muscle group movements instead of focusing on single-joint exercises.
Squats are a great exercise to add to your minimalist routine because it is a key compound movement that strengthens your lower body. This exercise works your glutes, quadriceps, and core. It is good to start out with body weight squats and as you become stronger, you can add dumbbells or a bar to your squats.
Push-ups are another important movement that strengthens your chest, arms, and shoulders. This is one of the most important movements for your upper body and over time, it becomes easier to accomplish.
Pull-ups strengthen your lats, biceps, and core. This exercise focuses on your back muscles and like push-ups, the more you do, the stronger you will get, and it will become easier to do more over time.
Abdominal workouts are a great way to strengthen your core. It can help lose fat in your stomach and improve all your workouts. Having a strong core is key to all other workouts it will make them easier, and you will have more stability and balance with a strong core.
No Need for a Gym Membership
Minimalist workouts can be done anywhere like in your bedroom, the park, backyard, or living room. There is no special equipment required for these quick and easy workouts. Minimalist workouts are usually around 30 minutes but they are just as beneficial as a gym workout because of the short burst of movements that are done in a short amount of time. A workout at home also saves time from going to the gym and if you are running late on time, minimalist workouts are easier to accomplish when you’re in a squeeze. For those who have access to a gym, these exercises can still be done, but for those who do not or are not ready for the gym, dumbbells are a great purchase for at-home workouts. Dumbbells, kettlebells, or any source of weight such as jugs of milk can be used to perform exercises. It is important to add some amount of weight to your workouts as you perform them more often because this will build your muscles. If you are more interested in loosing fat, burning your calories is the best option. This means more cardio workouts or adding cardio to your routine exercises before of after your workout.
Minimalist Workout Routines
The Scientific 7-minute workout is a great way to increase your heart rate with 12 quick exercises within 7 minutes. The goal is to raise your heart rate by 90% more than your maximal heart rate throughout this workout. All you will need for this workout is a chair easy enough to step onto and a wall nearby. Be sure to complete each exercise for 30 seconds and follow it with a 10-second break.
- Jumping jacks
- Air Squats
- Running in place
- Plank with arm lift
- Side plank
20-Minute Sprints Cardio Training
This workout can be done best outside or on a treadmill. This is a great 20- minute high-intensity workout with short rests to get your heartbeat up. First, warm up by stretching your legs and a light jog with high knees. Once your body feels warmed up, start with a running jog for 30 seconds. Next move to a jog/walk at a slower pace for 2 minutes. After those two minutes, you can take a quick 30-second rest. If you want to push yourself a little more, go straight from the light jog back to the running jog. Also, you could increase your running jog pace to a sprint. Keep switching between the 30 seconds running to a 2-minute jog for about 20 minutes.
Warm-up: light stretching with high knees and a slow jog
- Run/fast jog for 30 seconds
- Jog/walk for 2 minutes
- (Optional) 30-second rest
- Back to run and complete the rotation for 20 minutes
30-Minute Progressive Strength Training
For these exercises, you will need dumbbells, kettlebells, or jugs of milk! You can also do this work out in the gym if you have access to one. A strength training workout consists of starting your first rep with just your body weight and then doing the next two with your preferred dumbbell/weight. As you start to get stronger, you can likely move to heavier weights. This workout should be about 30 minutes based on how much time you have you could always shorted it or make it longer. Each exercise should be 3 sets increasing your weight each time. I recommend each set to be from 10-12 reps based on how fatigued you get. Start your first set with your body weight and for the next two use your increased weight. This method is called progressive over load it is when you gradually increase your weight over time with each set. These movements will challenge your body to become stronger and put ion more muscle mass. For the last 5 minutes of this workout I like to finish with an ab circuit that consists of 5 different movements and completing them each for one minute.
Complete each movement for 3 sets increasing weight each time for 10-12 reps and repeat for 25 minutes
- Shoulder press
- Bulgarian split squats
- Chest press
- Weighted sit-ups
For the last 5 minutes complete each movement for 50 seconds taking a 10-second break in between movements
- bicycle crunches
- flutter kicks
- plank hold
Don’t Run Too Fast
Time is a large part of our day when it comes to our busy lifestyles. If working out two hours a day does not fit in your schedule you can still accomplish just as good of a workout using minimalist training that will only take up 15-30 minutes of the day. However, minimalist workouts will not target the smaller muscles of your body such as the calves and biceps, but they still effectively work your body to help you gain muscle and lose fat with only a few hours a week. We provided these workouts to try out when you have that extra time throughout your day to complete a quick workout. Don’t let the lack of time you have stop you from becoming stronger and healthier. Let us know if you tried any of our workouts and be sure to check out our other articles for improving your mental and physical health with minimalism.