20 minutes, light dumbbells, and a strength workout to build muscle all over

Fit your upper and lower body training into one workout using this short dumbbell routine

Woman completes a dumbbell workout outside
(Image credit: Getty)

If you don't have enough time to dedicate separate workouts to different muscle groups, on different days of the week, then targeting multiple muscle groups in one session will still allow you to reach your goals. Spare twenty minutes for this full body workout shared by personal trainer couple, Juice and Toya, and grab some light dumbbells to work with.

Some of the best adjustable dumbbells are a worthwhile piece of equipment for any home gym as they allow you to adjust the weight as you train and save you needing to invest in a full rack of weights that will take up lots of space. 

Juice and Toya are both National Academy of Sports Medicine certified personal trainers and have designed this weighted workout to suit all abilities. The routine takes twenty minutes to complete and the pair recommend working with dumbbell sizes between 3-15lbs (1-8kg).

The workout includes 18 exercises and will be divided into two sets of nine with a 60-second break in between. You will work for 40 seconds and rest for 20.

And if you're struggling with performing any of the moves, Toya demonstrates modifications for some of the exercises so that you can continue training while avoiding any injury. They also advise dropping the load and using your body weight if you feel you need to.

Juice and Toya wrote, "Depending on the weight or your dumbbells and how fast you do each exercise, this can be made into a high intensity-cardio (light weights) or strength workout (heavier weights)."

Working with a lighter weight will still help you develop lean muscle mass but if you are completing this form of workout regularly you'll benefit from gradually progressing up the weights as your strength develops.

The routine involves a number of effective strength-building exercises with the addition of weights making them more advanced. The routine includes moves such as dumbbell rows, squat and press, v-sit shoulder press and single leg deadlifts.

Workouts like this make training at the gym less necessary and muscle building a much more feasible goal that can be achieved from home. One of our writers switched the gym for home workouts and found that he could still stay fit and healthy without attending the gym.

Just make sure you prioritize rest days and consume plenty of lean protein foods (or use one for the best protein powders for weight loss to increase your intake) as this will help your body to recover and grow muscle faster.

Jessica is Staff Writer at Fit&Well. Her career in journalism began in local news and she holds a Masters in journalism. Jessica has previously written for Runners World, penning news and features on fitness, sportswear and nutrition. 


When she isn't writing up news and features for Fit&Well covering topics ranging from muscle building, to yoga, to female health and so on, she will be outdoors somewhere, testing out the latest fitness equipment and accessories to help others find top products for their own fitness journeys. Her testing pairs up nicely with her love for running. She recently branched out to running 10Ks and is trying to improve her time before moving on to larger races. Jessica also enjoys building on her strength in the gym and is a believer in health and wellness beginning in the kitchen. She shares all of this on her running Instagram account @jessrunshere which she uses for accountability and for connecting with like-minded fitness lovers.