Short on time? Stick to these 5 Types of Exercises

by Megan K on October 17, 2013

Let’s face it, we are all short on time.

But time doesn’t have to be the thing that prevents you from working out.

In fact, the following 5 categories of exercises can be done 3 times a week in less than 20 minutes to build better body composition, increase strength and endurance and improve flexibility.


Push Movements


(these can be done from your knees or your toes)


-dumbbell chest presses

dumbbell chest press



Pull Movements

-bent over rows

bent over row images

-pull-ups (overhand grip) and chin-ups (forearms face your face)

pull-ups and chin-ups


-lat pull-downs

lat pull-down image



-Russian Twists

Russian Twist Images

-Twisting Planks or Side to Side Planks

(lift up on one side and then carefully transition to the other side)

side plank





(the image below is a prisoner squat; you can also have your arms relaxed by your side or hold dumbbells in your hands)





(this can also be done with a dumbbell or kettlebell)

be sure to use your legs for the lift and not your back

deadlift images




(knees can be bent or legs can be straight)


-Moving Planks

(if you are just starting out don’t try this with your feet on the bench :-) )

you can always move your hands as well

moving feet plank

-Hanging knee or leg raises

hanging knee raises


  1.  Pick 1 exercise from each category.
  2. Select an appropriate weight- feel free to vary the weight you choose from workout to workout based on how you are feeling. 
  3. Do as many reps as you safely can- before it becomes hard. 
  4. Stop if it is ever painful. 
  5. Move on to the next exercise.
  6. When you are through all 5 exercises- repeat them. 
  7. Repeat as many times as you can in the 20 minutes. 
  8. Record your progress in a training journal.

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