If you're short on time but still want to build functional strength, then full-body workouts are ideal. They can raise your heart rate and challenge your cardio fitness, while also strengthening muscles in your legs, arms, chest and shoulders.
This routine from James Stirling (aka @London_Fitness_Guy) features five bodyweight moves and only takes 30 minutes to complete. It doesn't require any equipment, so you can tackle it at home or in a quiet corner of your gym.
Watch his video below and make a mental note of the technique for each exercise. Then lace up your cross training shoes, start a timer and get to work.
Watch the London Fitness Guy's 30-minute workout
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After a quick warm up, you'll work through 10 repetitions of each exercise. Sterling suggests setting a timer for 25 minutes and working through as many rounds as possible, but you can always lower this target to suit your fitness level. Similarly, if you find the moves too challenging, you can adapt them by removing any jumping elements or dropping down to your knees in the plank and push-up variations.
During this circuit-style workout, your heart and lungs will kick into gear to provide your body with the oxygen it needs for exercise. Doing this kind of challenging workout regularly can boost your heart and lung function, improving your cardiovascular endurance (how effectively your body supplies oxygen to your working muscles and organs during exercise).
It's not just your organs that will feel the benefits. Stirling's workout includes five multi-muscle compound exercises that will strengthen your upper and lower body.
Dynamic exercises like the squat jumps, skaters and plyometric lunges will develop strength, power and coordination in your legs, while the hand-release push-ups and shoulder press push-ups provide the testing stimulus needed to grow your chest, shoulders and triceps.
The only muscles that get off lightly are those in your back and biceps, so save our best back workout to fill in the gaps later in the week.
Looking for a new mat? Our guide to the best yoga mat can help
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Harry Bullmore is a Fitness Writer for Fit&Well and its sister site Coach, covering accessible home workouts, strength training session, and yoga routines. He joined the team from Hearst, where he reviewed products for Men's Health, Women's Health, and Runner's World. He is passionate about the physical and mental benefits of exercise, and splits his time between weightlifting, CrossFit, and gymnastics, which he does to build strength, boost his wellbeing, and have fun.
Harry is a NCTJ-qualified journalist, and has written for Vice, Learning Disability Today, and The Argus, where he was a crime, politics, and sports reporter for several UK regional and national newspapers.
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