Here’s Why Shorter Workouts May Be More Beneficial Than an Hour at the Gym

Shorter workouts are better? Count us in!

By: Ilyse Rogozenski

Let’s face it, so many of us women lead crazy busy lifestyles which can make getting to the gym downright hard, and so many of us think that unless we have an hour to workout, it’s not even worth it. But, real talk-when it comes to exercise, it’s not how long you exercise, but what you do in that time that counts the most. And in some cases, shorter is indeed better.

We are sharing why working out for shorter periods of time may actually be more beneficial than cranking out hour-long workouts every single day.

Shorter & More Focused Workouts

Not too long ago, the belief was that longer workouts were optimal for getting in shape and losing weight. A typical workout might look like 45-60 minutes of cardio followed by another 45-60 minutes of strength training. While there’s nothing wrong with that, it’s a mighty long time to exercise. And, frankly, doing that much doesn’t guarantee greater results unless fatigue is your goal. Think about how tired you are just after the first hour, and now you are about to do more.

Your focus should be on what you do rather than how long you do it. If you’re familiar with CrossFit, you’ll notice that their WODs (workouts of the day) are not long. In fact, most are twenty minutes or less. But they are jam-packed with purpose and intensity. For example, one of their benchmark WODs is called Fran. It’s only two exercises, but they require great overall strength—thrusters and pull ups.

The workout goes like this—you do three rounds of each exercise. The first round is 21 reps, the second round is 15 reps and the last round is 9 reps. It may look easy, but it’s anything but. And, ideally, it should take less than 10 minutes to complete.

Luckily, you don’t have to spend money joining CrossFit to get the same types of short, intense workouts. FitOn has many workouts that are thirty minutes or less. Some are as short as ten minutes. That’s right. You could get a great workout in ten minutes as long as you are doing the right exercises and really pushing yourself to the max.

Benefits of Shorter Workouts

You might wonder how a workout that takes half the time can be effective. Wouldn’t working out longer burn more calories, make you stronger, get you into better shape? Not necessarily. Here are a few benefits you might not expect from cutting your workout time in half:

  • You can exercise at a higher intensity
  • Decreases your chances of burnout during your workout
  • Improves your focus (no time to waste when you only have a little bit of it)
  • Better overall workout as you’ll be using more muscles simultaneously rather than concentrating on only a few

When it comes to shorter workouts, it’s all about the intensity. You can’t simply go through the motions while taking endless breaks. You must commit to making those 10, 20 or 30 minutes count. If you don’t, then you won’t reap the benefits that shorter workouts provide.

HIIT (high-intensity interval training) has become popular because of its intensity and the short amount of time it takes to do. Usually, 20 minutes of intervals is more than enough to get the job done. And frankly, if you are really pushing yourself, your body won’t be able to do much more than that.

Setting Up Your Routine

It’s best to exercise in intervals where you go back and forth between exercises. Minimize your breaks. Only take them when you really need them. Otherwise, press through it as hard as you can. For strength exercises, choose those that will give you the most bang for your buck while hitting the major muscle groups like:

  • Thrusters
  • Deadlifts
  • Squats
  • Clean and presses
  • Pull ups
  • Push ups

The Takeaway

If you’re not sure how to create a routine of your own, FitOn has you covered with a variety of short and effective workouts. The only rule is to give 110% in order to maximize your results. You’ll only get out of it what you put into it.