10 Minute Fat Burning Exercises
Your doc has said it all along: 30 minutes a day of moderate-intensity physical activity improves health and cardio fitness. But what if you barely have time to call your parents or squeeze in six hours of sleep?
Here’s what trainers– and sports-medicine experts– have realized: You don’t have to do all 30 minutes in one stretch. In fact, you can do 20 or just 10 minutes a day to reap some of the benefits, from losing weight to toning to reducing stress and clearing your mind.
The secret? In the case of weight loss, you’ve got to move fast and hard and circuit-train; in the case of building strength, you’ve got to do those moves slowly, precisely, and consistently every other day.
Here, high-intensity 10-minute workouts that make the most of the time you’ve got. Do at least one each day, or if you’ve got time to spare, rotate up to four for maximum benefits.
THE GROUND RULES:
>> If you are target training (say, you want great arms), do the appropriate exercises for that body part consistently, every other day. If you want overall toning and fitness, mix and match the various workouts.
>> How to know if you’re working hard enough: “If you were to hold a conversation during these segments, you should be breathing hard, but not be completely breathless,” says Gabriel Valencia, cofounder of Focus Integrated Fitness in Manhattan.
>> The indicated time for each move is a suggestion. If you need more time to perform a move correctly, by all means take it.
BACKYARD BOOT CAMP
The lowdown: A heart-pumping, rev-up-your-metabolism workout you can do in your backyard, the gym, or a nearby park.
What you’ll get in four weeks: A healthier heart and better endurance.
Special equipment: A bench; a set of stairs or step-up; a treadmill or open running space.
Extra credit: Wear a weighted vest. Start conservatively– about five pounds, says Valencia, who created this workout.
How it works:
30 SECONDS Start with jumping jacks.
1 MINUTE Do step-ups (use a park bench if you’re outdoors) with left foot leading for 30 seconds. Repeat with right foot leading for 30 seconds.
30 SECONDS Follow with mountain climbers: Bend over and place hands on ground about 6 inches in front of feet, hands and feet shoulder-width apart. Knees are bent, back is as straight as possible.
Keeping hands on the ground, jump up your legs and land so that right foot is in front of left; jump up again and land with left foot in front, right foot in back. Continue alternating.
4 MINUTES Do sprint intervals: Run as fast as you can for 30 seconds; jog for one minute. Repeat for three sets.
30 SECONDS Use a bench to do inclined push-ups.
1 MINUTE Continue with squats for 30 seconds. Release; repeat for another 30.
30 SECONDS Do burpees: Stand feet shoulder-width apart; jump up with your arms straight up. Land with your hands and feet on the ground (same stance as the start of the mountain climber).
Now launch feet back into a push-up position, then return to start of mountain climber. Next, jump all the way up, reaching your hands to the ceiling so that you’re back to the same position as in your first jump. Continue.
2 MINUTES Return to the bench and do a front plank, bracing your abs and making sure spine is straight, keeping your shoulders relaxed and away from your ears. Hold plank for a minute. Follow with side planks, holding 30 seconds on each side.
The lowdown: No gym? No problem. With this total-body workout by Nick Kempen at Sports Club/L. A. in Miami, even the office makes for a good fitness space.
What you’ll get in four weeks: Toned arms; jeans that fit better.
Special equipment: A pair of 5- to 8-pound weights.
How it works:
1 MINUTE Jog in place.
1 MINUTE Stand while holding weights vertically in your hands, arms stretched out. Now pretend you’re sitting down on a chair, hold for three counts, then get back up, bringing the weights toward your chest. Repeat.
1 MINUTE Holding the weights, get in a semisquat position, spine at 45 degrees, back flat, arms hanging straight down, perpendicular to the floor. Now bend your elbows (so they’re pointing up at the ceiling) and lift weights toward your chest; hold. Slowly lower weights to original position. Repeat.
3 MINUTES Take your hand weights, arms by your side. Step right foot forward into a lunge; hold as you slowly bring up your weights in a bicep curl; return to original position. Now, while pivoting, step to the left (still with your right foot); hold; return. Continue for two more rotations until you’re back to where you started. Now repeat entire revolution with the left foot forward.
1 MINUTE Do push-ups on the floor or against the wall.
3 MINUTES Drop to the floor for a core hold: With forearms and toes on floor, keep spine straight and abs held in. Hold for one minute. Then release and stretch back into a yoga child’s pose: Sit back on your shins and reach your arms to the floor in front of you. Repeat core hold.
The lowdown: Put your old racket and balls to use with these heart-pounding, court-inspired drills designed by Whitney Kraft, director of tennis at the U.S. Tennis Association Billie Jean King National Tennis Center.
What you’ll get in four weeks: Better coordination, balance, and stamina; a new obsession with tennis skirts.
Special equipment: Tennis racket; three tennis-ball cans; two balls.
Extra credit: During rest periods, “dribble” the ball with your racket.
How it works (instructions assume right-handedness; reverse if you’re left-handed):.
30 SECONDS Place two cans 4 feet apart in a vertical line in front of you; sprint around them, making figure-eights.
1 MINUTE Rest for 30 seconds. Repeat figure-eights for 30 seconds with racket– alternating between swinging in forehand position and backhand position.
1 MINUTE Place two tennis balls in front of you. Hold the racket in forehand position as you tap the right ball with your right foot; return to starting position. Tap again for 15 seconds, then touch the right foot to left ball, holding racket in backhand position, for 15 seconds. Repeat tapping sequence with left foot.
30 SECONDS Arrange the three cans in a triangle as wide as your stance. Stand with each heel in front of a can so you’re facing the one remaining “point can.” Now step left foot behind point can and swing a forehand shot; return to starting position. Now step right foot behind point can and take a backhand shot. Continue alternating sides.
2 MINUTES Rest for 30 seconds. Continue the above exercise, pretending to hit a low volley for 30 seconds. Repeat with high volley. Then alternate high and low volleys.
5 MINUTES Rest for 30 seconds. Repeat circuit, starting with exercise 2.
The lowdown: A vinyasa-flow exercise (not for novices) that works the heart, builds core strength and flexibility, and centers the mind, created by Bethany Lyons, Crunch Group Fitness regional manager, New York City.
What you’ll get in four weeks: Tighter abs and butt; harder thighs and shoulders; triceps definition.
Special equipment: Yoga mat.
How it works:.
1 MINUTE Start with chair pose: feet shoulder-width apart, arms stretched up, spine straight, knees bent, and buttocks pointing back; hold for 30 seconds. Now straighten knees and lower arms. Take three deep and slow breaths, inhaling and exhaling through your nose.
6 MINUTES Do three sets of sun salutations. (For a detailed explanation and photos of this sequence, go to iyogalife.com.).
30 SECONDS When you’re in downward dog, come forward into a plank, making sure your abs are held in and spine is straight; use knees if necessary while still engaging core; hold.
30 SECONDS Bend elbows so you’re in a low push-up position. Hold for eight counts. Push up to regular plank, and then into downward dog. Take three slow breaths.
30 SECONDS From downward dog, jump feet through your arms into a seated position and come to boat pose: Legs and upper body are stretched up at 45 degrees; arms are stretched forward so your body looks like an upside-down A. Abs are in; spine is straight. Hold. Take five deep breaths.
1 MINUTE Now lie on your back, raise your feet, knees bent, and do slow-flow bicycles.
30 SECONDS Lie down in corpse pose. Take three deep breaths; hold.
The lowdown: A high-intensity, basketball-inspired workout that’ll make it clear why pro ballers get paid so much.
What you’ll get in four weeks: Stronger shoulders; shapelier calves; better coordination.
Special equipment: Basketball; basketball court.
Extra credit: Grab a friend and pass the ball back and forth while doing the side-shuffle exercise below.
How it works:.
1 MINUTE Stand with feet shoulder-width apart, then pass the ball around your waist continuously in a circular motion from right hand to left. Switch directions every 10 revolutions. “Let those muscles direct and control the movements,” says Sean Green, a trainer at Chelsea Piers in NYC and former NBA player.
1 MINUTE Repeat around right leg and under the knee for 30 seconds. Switch to the left leg for 30 seconds.
1 MINUTE Assume squat position, keeping chest upright. Pass ball through middle of legs in a figure-eight.
30 SECONDS Dribble with right hand for 15 seconds as you jog; repeat with left.
4 MINUTES Do diamond drill: Start by facing hoop from foul line. Sprint from foul line to baseline. Run backward to starting point. In defense stance (squat position, chest and hands up), side shuffle from foul line to right sideline; shuffle back in same position. Backpedal to half court; sprint to foul line. Shuffle again to the left and right. Repeat entire drill.
30 SECONDS Start on one side of the sideline. Jump to the other side, landing softly, and immediately bounce back to the initial side. Keep alternating sides.
1 MINUTE Repeat the sideline hopping, but this time do it on one leg, then the other.
1 MINUTE Dribble and jog.
The lowdown: A superchallenging arm, butt, and thigh workout consisting of real boxing moves created by Michael Olajide, owner of Aerospace, a boxing-inspired gym in NYC.
What you’ll get in four weeks: An urge to shop for spring tank dresses early.
Special equipment: None, but use a punching bag and gloves if you ‘d also like to blow off steam.
Extra credit: Box with small hand weights (3 to 5 pounds).