It seems as if the lifestyles so many of us are living continue to increase in complexity and in demand on our time. This inevitably requires us to make impactful decisions on the prioritization of and use of our time.
Each day we are given 24 precious hours to progress our lives forward in a meaningful way and accomplish those things most important to us. Hopefully, we use those hours wisely by prioritizing those things most important to us and focusing our efforts on a plan or regimen to accomplish our goals.
Certainly, taking care of our physical bodies, thus allowing us the ability to “go and do”, is one priority of which we should all have an allegiance.
In our efforts to balance our lives, a task that no one ever really accomplishes, as there are always unexpected events and circumstances that thwart our efforts, we can make some adjustments or adaptations that allow us to achieve our goals. When viewed from the context of limited time, what is presented here in this article is a focused 15-minute (designed around a standard 15-minute break time) routine that exercises every major muscle group of the body.
In addition, because equipment availability can be a rate limiting factor to exercising, this routine uses only 1 kettlebell, 2 dumbbells, an exercise band, and of course a floor and your chair. The resistance items can be easily transported to your office or work environment (or used at home during those breaks from the never-ending chores), and the floor and chair are always ready to accommodate some good old pushups and core work.
The routine presented here is designed to facilitate muscular strength changes that promote health, development and/or maintenance of lean body mass, and sustaining of resting metabolic rate for body composition purposes.
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A Few Governing Guidelines
- The amount of weight of the kettlebell and dumbbells you use will be determined by you according to your strength and current fitness level. However, the amount of weight of each resistance weights should cause your muscles to become exhausted (feel the burn) at the completion of the set making the last reps difficult to complete. Here are some helpful guidelines:
- Select a kettlebell weight that will challenge you in performing squats and shrugs, with a goal of performing 20-40 reps per exercise.
- Select dumbbell weights that will challenge you in performing biceps curls, triceps press, shoulder abductions, and lawnmower pull exercises, with a goal of performing 15-25 reps per exercise.
- Select an exercise band resistance level that will challenge you in performing 15-25 reps per exercise.
- Because this routine is time sensitive (15-minute break time) the rest period between sets is limited to 30 to 60 seconds.
- Perform this routine a minimum of 2 times each day.
- After some trial and error at selecting the number of reps per exercise you will perform, write in the column space the number of reps you will perform as part of your workout. Progress your workout by performing a greater number of reps as your strength and endurance increases. In time, you may also come to the point that you want to increase the resistance you are lifting by getting heavier weights.
- Now, get after it. Get your weights and bands, practice your routine, making adjustments as you go along, and enjoy feeling and experiencing the benefits that surely will come as you consistently execute your program.
Your Customized Program
PRIMARY MUSCLES WORKED
Pectorals (maj & min), Triceps, Ant Deltoid, Scapular Protractors (Pectoralis Minor and Serratus Anterior)
Gluteals, Hamstrings, Quadriceps, Back Extensors, Gastrocsoleus Complex
Biceps, Brachialis, Brachioradialis
Trunk Rotation Pulls
Scapular Elevators (Upper Trapezius, Levator Scapula)
Lats, Post Deltoid, Scapular Retractors (All Trapezius and Rhomboids)
Hip Flexors (Iliacus and Psoas Major)
Pectorals, Anterior Deltoid, Coracobrachialis, Scapular Depressors (Pectoralis Minor, Lower Trapezius)
Tap into Your Own Creativity and “Go and Do”
As you progress into your program, don’t be hesitant to make some changes and develop your own exercises – be creative in finding new ways to work the major muscle groups of the body. The human body was designed to be worked and will grow and adapt according to the stresses and strains placed upon it. And the lack of appropriate stress and strain to the body will yield the undesirable consequences which can unfortunately, decrease our ability to “go and do” all those wonderful things that a fit body is capable of doing. Success to you.
Lynn Perkes is a full-time faculty member at Brigham Young University-Idaho teaching courses in Kinesiology and Biomechanics, Applied Kinesiology and Assessment, Therapeutic Exercise, and Physical Therapist Assistant classes. He writes part time for ProhealthcareProducts.com, which sells healthcare, therapy, fitness, and personal protective equipment products.