What Workouts I Can Do When Short On Time?

It’s not easy to find time for working out. For most of us, the demands of life do not cease. Finding the time for a quality workout under such circumstances can be too much for some people to handle. Some others attempt to do a “rushed” workout, in which they perform all their usual exercises at top speed. While this is an option, it’s not the best option.

Exercising at an unnaturally fast pace is an easy way to injure yourself, so do your best to avoid that tendency. The question is: How can you get a proper workout in a shorter time without increasing your rep speed?

Compound exercises are the best solution to this problem. Compound exercises, as you may already know, are exercises that work on more than one muscle group. As you can see from this study, compound exercises achieve a greater level of muscle activation without increasing the resultant fatigue.

Although these exercises tend to be more difficult, they also offer a way to develop multiple parts of the body at the same time. As far as we know, this is the only healthy and realistic way to reduce your workout time without sacrificing effectiveness.

Exercises To Include

Now, let’s talk about the specifics of the matter. We will discuss some of the best compound exercises, with an emphasis on proper performance. You will have to decide which of these exercises to include, and the order in which you will do them. Here are some of our favorite compound exercises:


Not surprisingly, squats are one of the best possible workouts for your legs. Squats have been proven to activate the muscles of the thigh in a big way. Another study found that they exerted great influence on the muscles of the hip and thigh. The muscles of the lower back can also get a good burn from this exercise, and the abdominals as well.


The deadlift is an exercise that works nearly all the muscles in your back, and most of the muscles in your upper leg. It is simple, quick, and highly compound. One little thing, though: you have to make sure your technique is correct, or else you will end up turning this exercise into a squat.

According to this research, you should use both regular and stiff-legged deadlifts. While both of them worked a large number of muscles, each variation did a better job of focusing on different groups.

Bench Presses

This is one of the best compound exercises you can get. It works virtually the entire arm, including the deltoids, abs, biceps, and triceps. It also works your pectorals and your lats (back wings) in a big way. When performed correctly, it even helps the quadriceps by recruiting the legs to help with the motion.


Rowing might just be one of the most underrated of the compound exercises. It works a huge number of muscle groups, including the deltoids, pectorals, biceps, triceps, abs, obliques, quadriceps, upper back, lats, glutes, hamstrings, and calves. This is a huge list and should not be overlooked. A rowing machine might be expensive, but the results are probably worth the money.

Apart from these benefits, rowing will also help to develop coordination, as the performance of this exercise depends on the coordination of many different muscles. Truly, this is one of the best time-savers on our list.

Shoulder Presses

This is a compound exercise that only works for three muscle groups, but it still deserves a place among the best. This is because the shoulder press puts a lot of force on three of the most important muscle groups, and does so with great efficiency.

These three muscle groups are the deltoids, traps, and triceps. If you want an exercise that lights these three muscles up, you couldn’t ask for a better compound exercise.


Pull-ups are another great exercise, as they will light up a big chunk of muscles on the back, chest, and upper arms. Although these exercises do nothing for the legs, they work almost everything else to a greater or lesser extent. Best of all, the equipment is cheap! Pull-ups work most of the same muscles that are used in climbing, which are quite a few.

Other Time-Saving Tips

While compound exercises are the best way to get a quick and effective workout, there are a few other tips that can help you to get maximal benefits from a shorter workout.


A superset is an exercise set that combines two or more exercises. For instance, you might do five dumbbell curls followed by five preacher curls. You can mix any two exercises, doing them with little or no rest in between. By using two compound exercises, you can double up on the time-saving factor. For instance, a superset composes of squats and bench presses would work most of the body’s main muscle groups in a single compounded set.

Timed Sets

Instead of measuring your workout in terms of reps, you can measure it in terms of time. Use the stopwatch function on your phone (every smartphone has one). For instance, you might do five minutes of rowing, followed by a short rest. This method is only effective if you maintain a steady pace throughout your workout.

Proper Planning

As with any endeavor in life, you can save time on your workout through good planning. When you start, you should know which exercises you are going to do, and the exact order in which you will do them. Otherwise, you are likely to waste time as you decide what to do next.


When it comes to fitness goals, trainers will often state that there are “no shortcuts.” This view is essentially correct. Although there are no shortcuts in terms of effort, there are definitely some shortcuts in terms of time spent. We have tried our best to give you a few of these, and we hope that you will obtain the results you desire in the time that you have. If this information has been helpful, you can show your appreciation by following us on Facebook.

The post What Workouts I Can Do When Short On Time? appeared first on Gaspari Nutrition.

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