Muscle Up in Minutes

Get your fitness goals in on a tight schedule.

Q: I don’t have much time to work out. When I do, should I focus on cardio, strength training, yoga or something else?

A: Even if you’re busier than a tollbooth collector on Labor Day weekend, you can still benefit from short sweat sessions. Above all, strengthen your muscles and increase your metabolism, as muscle burns more calories than fat. Try doing resistance moves that don’t require equipment: push-ups for your upper body, crunches for your abs, and the invisible chair for your legs and butt (squat with your back against a wall; hold the position for up to two minutes). For a 20-minute workout that combines strength, stretching and cardiovascular training, visit For maximum health benefits, include 30 minutes a day of walking. No time? Work three 10-minute sessions into your life: Park farther away at work, buy a headset and walk in circles while you’re on the phone, or take Brutus for two loops around the block.

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Originally Published in Reader's Digest