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When it comes to working out, many excuses can be made in order to avoid it. A very popular one is that you simply “don’t have enough time” to get to the gym. What people may not know, however, is that there are tons of workouts that will make an impact in just a short amount of time. From 15 minute cardio sessions on the home treadmill to more advanced workouts that require weights and small amounts of reps, the excuse of not getting to the gym because you don’t have the time just won’t cut it anymore.


The workouts listed below are designed for anyone who is on a time crunch and can’t make it to the gym. That includes those who like to use the excuse to avoid working out, as well as those who are being honest when met with this dilemma. These exercises do require very minimal equipment, but the purchase will be worth it in the long run!


As always, it’s important to know your limits when working out, to stay hydrated no matter how short of a time you’ll be working out, and to maintain a proper diet in order for these workouts to remain effective.


Workout Option #1: Pull-up Paradise

While this exercise does require a pull up bar, it’s a worthy investment to have at home if working out in a pinch is going to be a trend for you. This workout from requires only 15 minutes of your time, 3 days a week – simply exchange 15 minutes of social media browsing and you’ll be all set.


Day 1

  • Pull up (underhand grip): 2 sets of 10-12 reps
  • Push up: 2 sets of 10-12 reps
  • Bodyweight/goblet squat: 2 sets of 10-12 reps
  • Hollow-body hold: 2 sets of 30 seconds

Day 2

  • Pull up (neutral grip): 2 sets of 8-10 reps
  • Bench dips: 2 sets of 8-10 reps
  • Backward-stepping lunge: 2 sets of 8-10 reps
  • Plank: 2 sets of 60 seconds

Day 3

  • Pull up (overhand grip): 2 sets of 5-8 reps
  • Incline push ups: 2 sets of 5-8 reps
  • Jump squats: 2 sets of 5-8 reps
  • Lying leg raises: 2 sets of 5-8 reps


Workout Option #2: Squat and Throw

For this quick exercise with full-body impacts, you’ll need a medium weighted medicine ball, a wall, and just about 20 minutes, depending on how quickly you run through your reps. Speed does not always equal efficiency, so make sure that you’re performing each exercise correctly, even if you’re on a time crunch and even if it means you don’t get through every rep.


  • Find a sturdy and clear wall in the house
  • Face the wall and hold the ball at your chest, standing about 3 ft away
  • Squat down, keeping thighs parallel to the floor
  • Slowly return to standing position, keeping your weight in the center of your feet
  • As you stand, throw the ball against the wall slightly above your head
  • As you catch the ball, return to squat position in one motion
  • Repeat for 12-15 reps


Workout Option #3: 30-Minute Sweet Spot

Don’t let the name of this workout fool you – this is a high-intensity bike workout that requires some stamina. This workout focuses on what is known as your lactate threshold pace. As expertly explains, this is a pace where you should be able to talk while performing the exercise, but just barely – and certainly shouldn’t be so intense that you feel sick or breathless. This exercise does require a stationary bike, so if you have one at home, this workout is for you.  


First: Start with 30 jumping jacks before you even get on your bike. This elevates your heart rate quickly, accelerating your warmup.

Next: Get on and start peddling, taking another 5-7 minutes to really get the blood going.

Finally: Find your sweet spot pace and finish out the ride.


Have other ideas for short workouts with high impacts? Send them over to me on Twitter. Keep checking my blog for more workout tips and information.