If you want to get in shape but don’t have the time to devote to an hour-long workout every day, consider replacing your long workouts with several shorter ones throughout the day. Known as mini workouts, these quick sessions are designed to burn fat and build muscle by keeping your heart rate elevated over the course of several hours instead of just one.
These mini workouts are also easy on your body, which makes them great options when you want to get in a workout without putting too much stress on your muscles and joints or when you’re dealing with injuries that make exercising more difficult than usual.
One great way to make time for mini workouts is to schedule them into your day. Dedicate a specific time for each session, and make sure to stick to it. This will help you stay on track and avoid skipping workouts. You can also try setting a timer, so you know when it’s time to start your next session. To get started, consider doing one of these five mini workouts throughout the day:
- Do 5 sets of 10 pushups at various times throughout the day (for example, set an alarm every hour).
- Stand up every 30 minutes or so and do as many squats as possible (5 sets of 20).
- Find a hill and jog up it 2 times; then walk down 3 times (repeat 4 more times).
- Do 50 lunges in 10 sets of 5; take short breaks between sets.
- Sprint for 1 minute, walk for 1 minute.
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Mix It Up.
One of the best things about mini workouts is that you can mix them up to target different areas of your body or focus on different types of exercise. For example, you might do some cardio in the morning, followed by strength training later in the day.
Or you could break up your cardio into shorter intervals throughout the day. Whatever you do, make sure you’re mixing things up to keep your body guessing and avoid boredom.
Focus on Your Core.
These muscle groups are essential for keeping your body stable and strong. Plus, strong core muscles can help improve your posture and alleviate back pain. To get started, try adding some core-strengthening exercises to your routine
Break Through Plateaus.
One of the great things about mini workouts is that they can help you break through plateaus. When you’re stuck in a rut, it can be tough to find the motivation to keep going.
But by breaking up your routine into smaller chunks, you can make it feel more manageable and less daunting. Plus, you’re more likely to stick with it since it won’t feel like such a chore.
Take Advantage of Breaks.
Our work schedules often dictate when we have time for a workout. But if you can’t make it to the gym during your lunch break or before work, that doesn’t mean you have to give up on exercise for the day.
Taking advantage of smaller breaks throughout the day can be a great way to sneak in some fitness. And the best part is, you do not even require to leave your desk.
Remember to Fuel Your Body Right.
What you eat before, during, and after a workout can make or break your performance. If you don’t fuel your body right, you won’t have the energy to power through a tough workout.
Plus, you could end up feeling nauseous or lightheaded. To avoid this, make sure to eat a balanced meal that includes complex carbs, protein, and healthy fats. And drink plenty of water.
How Much Exercise Is Enough?
Most people should aim for at least 30 minutes of moderate aerobic activity on most, if not all, days of the week. If you can’t find that much time in your day, consider breaking up your exercise routine into mini workouts.
These shorter sessions add up to the same amount of time, and can often be more effective than one longer workout. Plus, they’re easier to fit into a busy schedule.
Benefits of Mini Workouts.
1. Even if you’re short on time, you can still fit in a mini workout.
2. Research has shown that mini workouts can be just as effective as longer ones when it comes to improving your cardiovascular health.(1)
3. Because mini workouts are more intense than longer workouts, they can help you burn more calories and lose weight.
4. If you’re feeling tired, a quick burst of exercise can give you the energy you need to get through the day.
5. Exercise releases endorphins, which have been shown to improve mood and decrease stress levels.
6. You’ll use up less time trying to fit in multiple sessions because each session is shorter.
7. When you take on this type of routine, there will be days where you might squeeze a mini workout into the few minutes between meetings or spend 15 minutes doing exercises during lunch break at work.
8. The cumulative effect from all these little exercises will do wonders for your body and overall fitness level.
9. You don’t always need an expensive gym membership or even a location with specific equipment – any space that provides some privacy will do.
10. Whether you want to give your muscles a break after working them hard by using weights or pushing yourself further in cardio, mini workouts allow you to incorporate rest days without being deprived of exercise altogether.
11. Because people tend to underestimate the calorie expenditure of short bouts of physical activity like dancing, biking, running errands or gardening, mini workouts are an excellent way to help keep track.
12. No matter how many times you go back and forth from one place to another throughout the day, you’ll only need one membership fee and maybe one set of new clothes (exercising shoes).
Drawbacks of Mini Workouts.
Although mini workouts may sound ideal, there are a few potential drawbacks.
- First, you may not be able to get as much of a workout in during a shorter time frame.
- Second, you may have trouble staying motivated if you’re not seeing results as quickly as you’d like.
- Third, you may get bored more easily with shorter workouts.
- Fourth, you may have difficulty fitting mini workouts into your schedule if you have a lot of other commitments. However, mini workouts can still work for you if you need to fit exercise into your day without spending hours at the gym or on one long run. For example, one study found that people who did 10 minute intervals on an exercise bike five times per week lost weight and increased their fitness level just as well as those who exercised 30 minutes continuously each day over two months.
10-Minute Mini Workouts.
You don’t need a lot of time to get a good workout in. In fact, you can get in shape by doing mini workouts throughout the day. All you need is 10 minutes. Here’s how:
1) Do 10 push-ups or squats every hour.
2) Take 2-minute walk breaks every 30 minutes during your workday (make sure to get up and stretch your legs!).
4) Every few days change your routine. Maybe one day do 10 push-ups, 10 high knees and 20 sit ups before breakfast. The next day try 20 mountain climbers followed by 25 air squats after dinner. Remember that variety is key so make sure to mix up your exercises every couple of days.
For example, if today you did 10 push-ups, tomorrow do 20 squats instead. Keep changing your routine until you find a pattern that works for you. Some people might prefer to work out first thing in the morning when they have more energy; others might like working out at night.
You may want to do all three sessions a day, or just pick two depending on your schedule. If you only have time for two sessions, consider breaking them up into a morning and evening session.
However many times per day you choose to exercise, just remember that even small changes are better than no changes at all. If you think about it, there are approximately 86,400 seconds in a day.
That means that if you break up your workout into smaller intervals over the course of the day, then there will be enough time for plenty of activity.
Overall, doing mini workouts throughout the day is a great way to get in shape if you’re short on time. Not only that, but it can also help you boost your energy levels and improve your mood. So if you’re looking for a way to fit exercise into your busy schedule, give mini workouts a try.
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- Effects of Exercise to Improve Cardiovascular Health; https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6557987/