Two dumbbells and 20 minutes is all you need to build full-body strength and boost your metabolism

This workout will strengthen your arms, legs and core

Woman in green vest doing a dumbbell curl in a gym
(Image credit: Getty Images)

There are loads of benefits to strength workouts. For a start, they help you build muscle, which makes everyday movement easier. Having more muscle will also increase your metabolic rate, so that you burn more calories while resting. This means that it's actually a good idea to do some strength exercises for weight loss, if that's your goal, rather than focusing on endless cardio workouts. 

You don't need loads of equipment to do an effective strength workout, either. This routine from Viv Addo (one half of the coaching duo MrandMrsMuscle) shows how many different areas of the body you can target with just a pair of dumbbells.

It's a clever routine that manages to target your arms, legs, core and more in just 20 minutes. You can follow along by watching the video below, which highlights exactly which muscles are targeted by each move. 

Watch MrandMrsMuscle's 20-minute dumbbell workout

This is an interval style workout, which means you'll do each move for 45 seconds followed by 15 seconds of rest. Try to get through as many reps of each exercise as possible during this time, but don't rush and compromise your form. 

If you're trying to build muscle, it's worth trying to make time for a strength training session like this two or three times a week. Make sure you're also following the progressive overload principle and steadily increasing the weights you're using or the amount of time you spend exercising, otherwise you risk hitting a plateau.

Strengthening your muscles is just one way to build a healthy, resilient body. It's also important to do some mobility work and flexibility stretches fairly regularly. This will decrease your risk of injury and make it easier for your body to move fully into exercises like squats and lunges. 

Need some guidance on where to start? Try these simple stretches for beginners or have a go at these beginner yoga exercises that will both build strength and boost flexibility. 

Want some guidance on which weights to choose? Have a look at our guide to the best adjustable dumbbells

Alice Porter
Freelancer Writer

Alice Porter is a freelance journalist covering lifestyle topics including health, fitness and wellness. She is particularly interested in women's health, strength training and fitness trends and writes for publications including Stylist Magazine, Refinery29, The Independent and Glamour Magazine. Like many other people, Alice's personal interest in combining HIIT training with strength work quickly turned into a CrossFit obsession and she trains at a box in south London. When she's not throwing weights around or attempting handstand push-ups, you can probably find her on long walks in nature, buried in a book or hopping on a flight to just about anywhere it will take her.