Build muscle and burn fat with this 30-minute home dumbbell workout

This high-intensity routine helps you develop strength, boost your metabolism, and hit your fitness goals

Man performing bicep curls with dumbbells
(Image credit: Getty Images)

We used to think we had to run to lose weight and head to the gym to get stronger. But high-intensity workouts blend cardio with resistance training, allowing you to burn fat and build muscle in a single, short routine, like this 30-minute dumbbell workout you can do at home.

The session contains a mix of bodyweight and dumbbell exercises, designed to get your heart rate up and muscles working. Most of the moves work several muscles at once, improving the efficiency of the routine, which is how you get results in so little time.

All you need is a set of the best adjustable dumbbells to get started. These customizable weights are ideal for at-home exercise, but they often come at a cost. Fortunately, you can pick up the wolfyok Adjustable Dumbbells Set for 23% less right now at Amazon.

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The session is led by online fitness coach Joe Wicks, also known by his handle The Body Coach. Wicks demonstrates the moves and does the workout along with you, so you can practice your form for each exercise to get the most from your training and avoid injury.

You'll do a round of 10 moves, repeated three times, to get a muscle-building, fat-burning workout in just 30 minutes. To keep the intensity up, you'll exercise for 35 seconds, take a 25-second rest, then continue to the next move.

Watch The Body Coach's 30-minute dumbbell workout

This style of exercise is known as high-intensity interval training (HIIT). The aim is to keep the intensity up throughout, which works your muscles hard and elevates your heart rate. As a result, you'll burn more energy during the workout, but for hours after too.

It helps to boost your metabolism (the amount of energy you burn at rest), which is why many people also use a HIIT workout for fat loss to reach their fitness goals. You don't need equipment for HIIT, but Wicks' routine adds resistance to help you get a full-body workout.

There are also plenty of multi-muscle compound exercises, like those favored by Chris Hemsworth's personal trainer. As you're working several muscles simultaneously, this burns more energy and increases the fat-burning potential.

If you're after more time-efficient compound exercises, pick up one of the best kettlebells and learn how to do kettlebell swings. This move works your whole body, increases your heart rate, boosts your metabolism, and builds core strength.

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James Frew
Fitness Editor

James is a London-based journalist and Fitness Editor at Fit&Well. He has over five years experience in fitness tech, including time spent as the Buyer’s Guide Editor and Staff Writer at technology publication MakeUseOf. In 2014 he was diagnosed with a chronic health condition, which spurred his interest in health, fitness, and lifestyle management.

In the years since, he has become a devoted meditator, experimented with workout styles and exercises, and used various gadgets to monitor his health. In recent times, James has been absorbed by the intersection between mental health, fitness, sustainability, and environmentalism. When not concerning himself with health and technology, James can be found excitedly checking out each week’s New Music Friday releases.