Functional Fitness

How to make best use of time in the gym

I know a lot of people struggle to find an hour to spend in the gym on a regular basis. The main reason being that for most of us it isn’t just the hour or so when we’re actually in the gym, it’s the 20+ minutes getting ready and travelling to the gym, followed by another half hour getting home and having a shower, so it’s normally closer to two hours. The trouble is that, while an hour can be worked in to a busy home life, once you start factoring in work, family, odd jobs and all the other stuff we have to factor into a day, it’s difficult to justify two hours… to the point that it’s often easier to not go to the gym. Unfortunately it’s a vicious circle, we don’t go to the gym on a regular basis, so when we do get there it’s way harder than it should be, so the temptation to duck a session ramps up. My aim is to break that circle by building short effective sessions that give you a fighting chance of a good work out in half an hour or so.

I’m pushing a very simple four stage workout… Warm-up, Weights, Intervals, Core. If you blitz it, that’s easily doable in 30 minutes and you should feel that you’ve had a workout once you’re done.

O – The Warm-up gets your body working…

O – During the Weights you need to do exactly what it says on the tin and shift proper weights, ideally by combining a freeweight (dumbbell or barbell) exercise with a bodyweight exercise.

O – Intervals should push your normal cardio efforts outside your comfort zone.

O – And the Core throws in exercise variations that directly or indirectly work on your abs.

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