5 Great High Intensity Workouts For Busy Women

It's tough trying to balance a full-time job with the rest of our obligations, especially if we're trying to stay in peak physical shape. Given the busy lives we lead, it's not enough to hop on the treadmill and expect to burn off those excess calories anymore; we're going to have to work smarter and harder to win the perpetual battle of the bulge.

The best way is to take up a compound high-intensity training program in which you perform a combination of quick cardiovascular exercises and resistance training. These programs include sessions that take little more than 30 minutes to complete, and they can radically transform your body within three months or less.

Here are some recommended programs that can tone you up in a hurry:

1. P90X

Power 90 Extreme, also known as "P90X" for short, is a strenuous cross-training workout program that takes 90 days. Your co-workers have probably mentioned it, and for good reason: It’s a challenging program that yields results if you adhere to the schedule and eat properly. Personal trainer and P90X creator Tony Horton chalks it up to the program's variety and intensity.

Each day, you will be working different parts of your body in grueling sessions that take anywhere from 30-45 minutes, followed by an abdominal circuit that will leave your midsection begging for mercy. Best of all: You don't need anything other than a pull-up bar or some resistance bands and a few dumbbells.

Busier individuals should look into P90X2 and P90X3, both of which offer the same incredible results but in quicker and much more difficult sessions.

2. Insanity

If you've got half an hour to spare, then you can spend it running, jumping, and pushing your way to peak physical fitness. That's the main selling point of Insanity, a program from the same company that brought you P90X.

Whereas P90X was geared towards longer resistance training sessions, Insanity is composed of brief high-intensity interval training videos that will shred fat all over your body and make you a fitter and faster athlete. Insanity proved to be such a hit that it even earned TIME Magazine's seal of approval, with writer Markham Heid claiming that you could reasonably expect to "transform your body and drop several sizes."

Insanity revolves around 30-minute classes consisting of grueling plyometric cardiovascular circuits and power resistance workouts using your own bodyweight. After a brisk active warm-up, you can expect to perform so many jump-tucks, shuffle runs, suicide drills, lunges, and push-ups that you may wind up with your face down in a pool of your own sweat.

3. Rowing

Why reinvent the wheel, when you could simply row your way to physical perfection? Rowing works both halves of your body and it may help break more than just a sweat if you do it for long enough. But if you can break it into circuits of short-burst rows followed by sets of bodyweight exercises like push-ups, pull-ups, sit-ups, and squats, then it could be the shortcut you need to attain that longer, leaner body. Annie Mulgrew, certified fitness instructor and program director at City Row in New York City,  came up with an intense 20-minute interval routine that will turn you into a limber rowing monster.

"Because you actually row with your arms and your legs, it seriously puts your body through the wringer," writes Elizabeth Narins of Cosmopolitan Magazine. You can expect to burn about 682 calories in a 60-minute, high-intensity session.

4. Martial Arts

Martial arts are a great way to work out while meeting new people andlearning skills that can save your life.

With crime on the rise nationwide, it has never been more important to learn some form of self-defense. Enter the world of martial arts, which aren't just for men with tattoos and shaved heads anymore. Women have actually become some of the most dangerous practitioners of hand-to-hand combat -- among them current bantamweight champion Amanda Nunes, Megumi Fujii, Laila Ali, and the inimitable Ronda Rousey.

Combining sets of high-repetition calisthenics with padwork, bag hitting, and sparring, a single boxing session can burn over 700 calories in an hour and build lean muscle the more you show up. You don't have to limit yourself to using just your hands, either. Look into either Muay Thai or Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu to round out your entire game and become an all-around wrecking machine.

5. HIIT Bodyweight Workout

High-intensity interval training is the best way to slim down in a hurry.

The secret to Shape's high-intensity interval bodyweight workout is that it lulls your body into a false sense of security with moderate bodyweight exercises at a brisk pace for two minutes before proceeding to harder exercises in a much faster one-minute set. The best part is that you don't need any equipment, and you can do it virtually anywhere!

Expect to perform squats, lunges, and push-ups back-to-back before proceeding to squat jumps, shuffles, and planks. Repeat the entire circuit two or three times for maximum fat-torching effect.

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1 comment:

  1. I don't even have a job and I have trouble fitting it in! But it's time I took my workouts up a notch, so I will give one of these a try!


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