Gym workouts can be a great way to boost your motivation and train with large equipment and assorted weights. But they can also be time-consuming and expensive, making fitting in with a busy schedule harder.
Fortunately, you don't actually need the gym if you want to strengthen your whole body — all it takes is 10 minutes, a set of dumbbells, and this short routine from Chris Hemsworth's personal trainer.
If you plan to train at home, the best adjustable dumbbells are an excellent investment. These combine several dumbbells to save you space, and you can quickly adjust the load as you get stronger.
Luke Zocchi, head trainer at Centr, Chris Hemsworth's fitness app, developed this muscle-building, time-efficient full-body workout. The aim is to do 12 reps of each exercise, then repeat the five-move circuit three times.
But that doesn't mean you should rush through the reps; take your time with each repetition, focusing on the technique and taking a few seconds to lower the weight. You perfect your form using Zocchi's demonstrations before you start to get the most from your session.
Watch Luke Zocchi's 10-minute dumbbell workout
You can get results in such a short time because Zocchi has included several compound exercises in his workout. These work several muscles simultaneously, compared to isolation exercises like biceps curls which only target a single muscle.
This isn't a surprise, as Zocchi told us he is a big fan of compound exercises generally and includes many of them in his Centr routines too. But there are other benefits to this specific session beyond building muscle.
As it's an intense routine with just 45 seconds of rest between sets, it increases your heart rate, so you burn more energy during the workout. And sustaining this high heart rate leads to longer-term changes, like a boost to your metabolism (the amount of energy you burn in a day).
In that sense, it's like a high-intensity resistance training (HIRT) workout but with a focus on repetitions rather than time alone. Of course, you can still enjoy longer sessions, but this one is a great option when you're short on time.
This blend of muscle-building and fat-burning exercise is one of our favorite things about Centr. As we found in our Centr review, the programs fit around your schedule, and you can even filter workouts by the equipment you have to hand.
These sessions are effective, but they work your muscles hard, so you'll probably feel the effects of delayed-onset muscle soreness (DOMS) the next day, caused by tiny tears in your muscle fibers your body needs to repair.
You can aid your recovery by keeping some of the best protein powders for weight loss nearby to blend up a post-workout smoothie to keep topped up on the protein your body needs to repair, grow, and strengthen your muscles.
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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.
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