This seven-move workout challenge will build strength and burn calories (and you only need two dumbbells)

This session is great for a packed gym or a time-efficient home workout

A man performing a devil press with dumbbells
(Image credit: Getty)

Gyms tend to be incredibly busy in January and we couldn't be happier about it. After all, knowing the many mental and physical benefits that come with regular exercise, seeing more people lacing up their sneakers can only be good a good thing.

However, this can lead to a shortage of gym equipment, with machines and specialist kit in high demand. That's where this minimalist workout comes in. All you need to complete it is a couple of dumbbells, so you can grab a pair, find yourself a quiet corner and get to work. It can also be done with a pair of the best kettlebells (opens in new tab), so you can give it a go at home if you own either of these free weights. 

The seven-move workout has been designed by certified personal trainer and fitness influencer Bradley Simmonds (opens in new tab), promising to boost both your strength and fitness levels while burning calories, fast. 

You're tasked with completing a total of 400-reps, but don't worry if this seems like a daunting prospect. The workload is split into a circuit of seven challenging but enjoyable exercises, so you'll never need to perform too many repetitions of any given movement in one go. 

To start the session, complete ten repetitions of each exercise (except lateral lunge shoulder raises, where you'll do 20) one after the other. Once you've finished one round, repeat this five times to reach the 400-rep goal and complete the workout. The aim is to hit the finish line as fast as possible, while making sure you maintain good form for all exercises. 

Watch Simmonds' video below to find out which seven exercises he has in store, and make sure to match his technique to ensure proper form. This way you know you're getting the most out of each movement while minimizing your chance of injury. 

Watch Bradley Simmonds' 400-rep workout challenge

A post shared by bradleysimmonds (@bradleysimmonds) (opens in new tab)

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This session is a full-body workout, recruiting every major muscle group using a series of compound exercises (opens in new tab). These are movements that engage several muscle groups at once, making them a time-efficient way to train. 

Squats are a perfect example of a compound exercise, activating major muscles including the hamstrings, quads, glutes and even core. If you're new to the movement, you can use our handy feature to learn how to do squats (opens in new tab) with perfect form.

If you want to add this session into your weekly exercise plans, we recommend using it as a standalone daily workout due to its intensity and high overall volume of repetitions. You will also want to give your muscles the chance to recover, so we advise moving away from resistance training the following day.

Instead, you can take a rest day or focus on boosting other elements of your fitness such as your flexibility or aerobic capacity. These anti-aging yoga moves (opens in new tab) are a great way to soothe your aching muscles, or our running plan for beginners (opens in new tab) is a good option if you want to take your first steps into the wonderful world of jogging. 

Harry Bullmore is a fitness writer covering everything from reviews to features for LiveScience, T3, TechRadar, Fit&Well and more. So, whether you’re looking for a new fitness tracker or wondering how to shave seconds off your 5K PB, chances are he’s written something to help you improve your training.


When not writing, he’s most likely to be found experimenting with a wide variety of training methods in his home gym or trying to exhaust his ever-energetic puppy.


Prior to joining Future, Harry wrote health and fitness product reviews for publications including Men’s Health, Women’s Health and Runner’s World. Before this, he spent three years as a news reporter with work in more than 70 national and regional newspapers.