Get fit fast with 15-minute workouts

Ever been guilty of saying, “I don't have time to get fit?” I'm sure we all have, at some point. A busy job and social life probably doesn't leave you with much time, but even the busiest, most stressed professional has time for a 15-minute workout. Our four 15-minute workouts are designed to tackle problem areas such as your bum and legs, belly and arms, so you can get fit fast and tone up too.

Whether you're looking for a lunchtime workout to fit into your daily routine, need a quick workout that you can squeeze in after a day in the office or even a workout to keep your fitness levels up on holiday, these four routines offer plenty of variety, so no more gym boredom! You can head for the gym, workout at your desk or at home, the choice is yours.

Sculpt those arms workout

Looking for a way to shape, tone and strengthen your shoulders, upper back, upper chest and arms? These moves will have you looking great and feeling confident in strappy tops and dresses in no time. Repeat the full circuit with a minute's rest in between. We recommend you do this workout four times a week for the best results. Ready?

Standing V Raise

This little move is great for toning your upper arms and shoulders. Stand with a dumbbell in each hand, feet shoulder-width apart and arms at your sides, palms facing in. Keep your arms straight (but don't lock them) then raise your weights diagonally to form a 'V' shape with your arms – at this point, your arms should be parallel to the floor. Hold this for one second then return to the start. Try 12 to 15 reps, building up gradually.

Shoulder press

For this move, again stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, and knees bent slightly. Hold a pair of dumbbells just above shoulder level, palms facing each other. Then press them up until your arms are straight over your head (again, don't lock your arms). Hold this for one second, then lower the dumbbells slowly back down to the starting position, to a count of three seconds. Do six to eight reps and you'll really start to feel those endorphins pumping.

Rotating triceps kickback

Standing with your knees bent, hold a dumbbell in each hand and lean forward slightly, bending your right elbow and bringing the dumbbell to your side so your upper arm is parallel with the floor. Now, move the dumbbell back, straightening your arm and at the same time, rotate it until your palm faces the ceiling. Then rotate it back, palms facing in again, returning your arms to the bent position. After 12 to 15 reps with each arms, you've reached the end of the arm sculpting workout – we think you've earned a post-workout snack. But don't get too comfy!

Blast that belly workout

You might be a slim, fit size 8 but you can still have a bit of a belly if you don't work out your core muscles. The deep abdominals are responsible for pulling in your waist, so spend time on them for a defined waist and flat tummy. These moves will help shape your core and tone your abs. Try to repeat the circuit twice and fit this into your routine four times a week. Don't forget to stay hydrated as you workout!

Stability ball pelvic crunch

You'll need a five to 10 pound medicine ball for this exercise. Lie face-up on a stability ball and press your head and upper back against it. Keeping your feet together on the floor, hold your medicine ball against your chest. Brace your abs as you crunch up, raising your shoulders off the ball. Reach towards the ceiling with the ball, then lower it, returning to the start. Do 12 to 15 reps – then it's onto the next move; stay motivated!

Mountain climber

Grab your stability ball and get into a plank position with your arms shoulder-width apart on the ball. Then, drawing your right knee in towards your chest, hold this for one second before returning to the plank position. Switch to the left knee – that's one rep. You need to get through 12 to 15 before this exercise is complete, so stay focused! Make sure you keep your back flat, core braced and movements controlled.

The Matrix

No, not the one starring Keanu Reeves...this one is all about strengthening your core and back. You'll need your medicine ball again. This time, kneel on the floor, with your knees hip-width apart. With your torso upright, press the medicine ball against your abs then slowly lean back. Slowly! Only go as far as is comfortable, ensuring you keep your legs planted on the floor. Hold this position for three seconds then return to the start, using your core muscles to pull yourself up. After 12 to 15 reps, you should feel your abs really working.

Lower body workout

Hips, bums and thighs get to work in this 15-minute workout that will have you proudly wearing those skinny jeans with confidence! This workout lifts and firms whilst burning fat. Aim to repeat the circuit twice and fit this workout into your busy life four times a week – relax afterwards with one of our  smoothie recipes; you've earned it!

Squat, lunge and curl

Standing with your arms at your sides, squat until your thighs are parallel with the ground. Then push back up to the start. Take a giant step forward with the left foot, lowering your body so your left thigh is parallel with the ground. Push up on your left leg, curling your right heel towards your glutes. Then return to the start and switch to stepping forward with your right foot. Continue alternating for 20 reps.

Sumo squat

We don't recommend a sumo wrestler's diet, but we do love this take on the classic squat – for more squat variations, read this! Find a heavy dumbbell and hold one end in either hand in front of your pelvis, at arm's length. Stand with your feet about twice shoulder-width apart, turning your toes out slightly. Now, the hard part! Lower yourself down as far as you can – bend your knees and push your hips back. Pause for a second before returning to the start. Aim for 10 to 12 reps.

Stability lunge

Standing with your feet shoulder-width apart, keep your arms at your sides. You want to lift your right knee until your thigh is parallel with the floor. At the same time, raise your arms over your head, palms facing each other. Hold this for five seconds before you (slowly) drop your right foot into a front lunge. Then bring your left leg forward and return to a standing position. Repeat 10 to 12 times for each leg – don't forget to alternate sides.

Total body workout

For a get-fit-fast 15-minute workout that targets all your major muscle groups, this is just the ticket! Repeat the circuit three times, with a one minute rest in between. Try to fit this into your workout routine four times a week to see results fast.

Squat

Standing with your feet hip-width apart, hold a dumbbell in each arm at your sides. Then squat down, as if you're sitting in a chair, until your thighs are almost parallel with the floor. Then slowly return to the starting position. Aim for 12 to 15 reps.

Chest press

You'll need an exercise bench for this upper body workout. Lie back and hold one dumbbell in each hand, at arm's length, over your chest, turning your palms slightly inward. Now, lower your arms until the weights are alongside your chest and press back up to the start. Again, 12 to 15 reps is the magic number!


READ THIS NEXT: 16 squat variations to try today

Author By Paula Beaton
Date On 10th Oct 2014 at 11:23
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