Dedicating an hour or two of your day to exercise isn’t always an option. Sometimes things are just too busy, the day is just too short and your motivation too lacking. If this is the case, you don’t need to abandon exercise all together – 30 minutes is all you need.

Slogging it out for hours at the gym isn’t the only way to go. Follow the correct approach and in just 30 minutes you can:

  • Build strong, lean muscles
  • Improve cardiovascular fitness
  • Send fat burn into overdrive
  • Build core strength

Research shows that exercise for a total of 150 minutes a week will generate health related benefits. That means you can conveniently and effectively enjoy the benefits of exercise by doing just five short 30-minute workouts a week. The secret is to make sure that the 30 minutes you spend working out is carefully structured.

You can build strength in 30 minutes

When it comes to strength training, 30 minutes is the perfect amount of time to effectively work all the big muscle groups; the legs, the chest and the back. Exhausting these muscles with a circuit of light weights and high repetitions, has strong calorie and fat burning effects, and builds muscular strength and endurance. The ideal workout could include sets of:

You can improve cardiovascular fitness in 30 minutes

Thirty minutes of effective cardio training is all you need to get your heart rate pumping, increase aerobic fitness and put your calorie burn into overdrive. There are many cardio exercise options including stationary cycling, boxing or martial arts training, step based aerobics, and functional bodyweight training. If you have no equipment, functional training is perfect. The ideal functional training workout could include sets of:

How to get maximum results from short workouts

For those looking to up the ante, high-intensity interval training is the key. A 30-minute HIIT workout, such as LES MILLS GRIT™, will burn calories for hours after the workout, maximize aerobic fitness, unleash fast-twitch muscle fibers and grow lean muscle tissue. Some experts believe that you can even enjoy these benefits in much less time (in fact there is even a scientifically-proven formula for a One Minute Workout).

“In most cases it’s not the quantity of time spent working out, but the quality of the workout,” says Bryce Hastings, Les Mills Head of Research. “When the workout period is short the structure of a workout is critical. All of the exercises need to be carefully balanced and sequenced to ensure optimum effectiveness.”

Bryce suggests that strength and cardio training shouldn’t be your only areas of focus. Building core stability is also key. A weekly 30-minute CXWORX™ workout will help chisel your core and build functional strength and allow you to get more out of your strength and cardio workouts.

For best results alternate different types of training across days of the week. And if you really want to maximize results, try a couple of 30-minute workouts back-to-back (but remember to always do any strength-based training first and always do CXWORX last).

Anyone looking to maximize results in minimal time can access a variety of 30-minute LES MILLS™ workouts any time, anywhere – just login to LES MILLS™ On Demand.

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