Try This Quick 5-Move Workout to Build Total-Body Muscle

Ebenezer Samuel, C.S.C.S., Jay T. Maryniak

From Men's Health

Say you don’t have time to pick a muscle to train today. The fix: Train every
single one of them in this 5-exercise, 25-minute routine that boosts your heart rate while building critical muscle.

The routine, designed by Men's Health fitness director Ebenezer Samuel, C.S.C.S. and trainer Jay T. Maryniak uses a set of dumbbells and a bench in its most standard iteration—but you can also sub in other forms of load if you don't have a set of dumbbells on hand.

Do the workout 3 days a week, resting 1 day between sessions.

The 5-Move, Full-Body Muscle Workout

Set a timer, then perform the exercises in order. Do four 1-minute intervals of each move, doing reps for 40 seconds, then resting for 20 seconds. Focus on form, even if it costs you a few reps each interval.

1. Elevated Plank Row

Photo credit: Giacomo Fortunato
Photo credit: Giacomo Fortunato

Get in plank position with your left forearm on a bench or a box. Your legs should be shoulder width apart. Grasp a dumbbell in your right hand; let your arm hang naturally. This is the start. Row the dumbbell toward your rib cage; keep your hips square to the floor as you do. Return to the start. That’s 1 rep. Switch sides every set.

Eb says: “It’ll be tempting to let your rowing-side hip shift upward. Battle that by actively squeezing your core and glutes as hard as you can.”

2. Glute Bridge Floor Press

Photo credit: Giacomo Fortunato
Photo credit: Giacomo Fortunato

Lie on your back holding medium-weight dumbbells directly over your shoulders, arms straight, feet near your butt. Tighten your abs and squeeze your glutes, raising your butt. This is the start. Bend at your elbows and shoulders, lowering the dumbbells until your elbows touch the floor; pause, then straighten your arms. That’s 1 rep.

3. Reverse Lunge to Single-Arm Overhead Press

Stand with a dumbbell at your side in your right hand. Step your right foot back, placing your toes on the floor, and bend at your knees and hips, lowering your torso until your left thigh is parallel to the floor. Curl the dumbbell toward your chest, then press it overhead. Reverse the movements back to the start. That’s 1 rep. Switch sides every set. Struggling to press? Stop with the curl.

Eb says: “Protect your lower back by continually refocusing on your abs, contracting them hard once you’ve lowered into the reverse lunge, and again right before you press overhead.”

4. Dumbbell Hollow-Body Flutter Kick

Photo credit: Giacomo Fortunato
Photo credit: Giacomo Fortunato

Lie on your back, arms straight, holding dumbbells above your shoulders. Press your lower back into the floor, tighten your abs, and lift your shoulder blades off the floor. Lift your straight legs a few inches off the floor. This is the start. Flutter your legs back and forth, raising the left a few inches as you lower the right, and vice versa.

Eb says: “You must keep your shoulder blades off the floor. That’s what makes the hollow body worthwhile—and makes your abs cry after 40 seconds.”

5. Goblet Jump Squat

Stand holding a medium-weight dumbbell at your chest, feet shoulder width apart, shoulder blades squeezed, core tight. Bend at your knees and hips, lowering your torso until your thighs are nearly parallel to the floor. Stand explosively, squeezing your glutes and jumping a few inches off the floor. Land and immediately do another rep.

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