Photo courtesy of Rethwill Images

Can you work out in only 15 minutes?

So many fads hold the promise of “you only need to work out for X minutes a day!” Maybe they say you don’t need any equipment or weights, or that “it’s never been easier!” Well, they’re right about the first part.

This IS technically possible. The down side is: it’s a really hard workout and going to suck. In fact, if you don’t have a base level of fitness, it will likely take you longer than 15 minutes. Here’s something you can do at the park or school on your way home, or just around your neighborhood:

  • 400m Sprint (should not take you longer than 3 minutes)
  • 20-30 Jump Squats or Air Squats (preferably with a resistance rubber band)
  • Push-Ups or Pull-Ups to Failure
  • 20-30 Lunges with a Twist
  • 400m Sprint

photo by CBC

Now there are other drawbacks to this style. It’s not really possible to specialize in anything, so bulking up or gaining great endurance, speed, or strength aren’t feasible. But it would it would be adequate for getting into shape or maintaining fitness.

There are no easy solutions, and getting in shape requires more than 10-20 minutes a day. You’re better off adjusting your diet and working more activity into your daily life. Prepare your meals for the week ahead of time. Do yoga for five minutes when you get up. Park farther away from the store or work. Take the stairs instead of the elevator. Go for a walk after dinner.

If you’re crunched for time, don’t look for a silver bullet, the small differences can add up.

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