Here's an interesting tidbit: the inventor of P90X workouts - approximately one hour-long workouts - is also the brains behind the 10-Minute Trainer workouts. 10-Minute Trainer workout formats are designed for those with minimal time to train. So, if you cannot find an hour to engage in the P90X program, does the 10-minute session now trump the one-hour P90X session? Seriously, give me those extra 50 minutes to use elsewhere.


This may create a quandary for the person seeking the right program to use. In today's depressing environment of laziness, horrible eating, and reliance on technology to move us from point A to B, I believe any physical activity is better than nothing, so let's go with it.


Breaking Muscle Shop

workouts, short workouts, ten minute workouts, 10 minute workoutsI'm all for busting your ass in training - safely. But understand hard work and time have an inverse relationship, generally. That is, the closer you come to a one hundred percent effort, the shorter your workout time will be. Think all-out sprinting: an all-out sprint ends sooner than a 50%-effort run. All said and done, the greater your intensity, the shorter your workout time. So, which is better - shorter and extremely intense or longer and moderately intense? It's a subjective topic and similar to the apples versus oranges debate.


But for certain, as I mentioned, something is better than nothing. I think you would all agree with that. I completely understand that sometimes people have limited time to devote to meaningful exercise due to work and family obligations. That being a reality, let's look at some viable options that fit a busy lifestyle. If only 10-minute segments fit into your daily schedule, here are some workout suggestions.


10-Minute Workouts You Can Do Anywhere


Workout 1: Running Only


Simply go for a 10-minute run as hard as hard as you can. Your running pace will diminish quickly, but keep pushing hard for the duration. It's amazing how those 10 minutes of all-out effort will put a strain on your cardiovascular and energy systems. Ultimately, it may put you in the fetal position. Remember, something is better than nothing.


Workout 2: In Your Home


Only equipment required: a pull-up bar/device and dumbbells or a barbell. Disclaimer: this could be the worst 10 minutes of your fruitful life. But remember, it's only 10 minutes of your 24-hour day. One minute of the following exercises, with no rest between them:


  • Burpees

  • Squats

  • Push ups

  • High or low-bar pull ups

  • Bicycle crunches

  • Jumping jacks

  • Mountain climbers

  • Bar or dumbbell overhead press

  • Run in place

  • Burpees


Workout 3: Resistance Equipment Required


Five exercises performed to volitional muscular fatigue at a 10 repetition goal, using a 4-second raising ("up") phase and 8-second lowering ("down") phase with no rest between exercises:


  1. Multi-joint leg exercise - a squat, leg press, or dead lift.

  2. Overhead Press - using a barbell, dumbbell, or machine.

  3. Pulldown - using a either a close or wide grip via body weight or on a plate-load or selectorized machine.

  4. Chest press - using a barbell, dumbbell, or machine.

  5. Low row - using a barbell, dumbbell(s), or machine.


It's amazing what you can accomplish when time is minimal - provided you work hard. Not much time? Now there’s no excuses.


Photos courtesy of Shutterstock.

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