With so many exercise programs available, it can be daunting to know which ones work best for desired results.
This is especially true if you’re short on time. But, 5 minutes is all you need to have a healthier lifestyle.
The following 5-minute exercises are designed to improve and support endurance, strength, and flexibility.
5-Minute Exercises for Endurance
Endurance exercises are those which increase breathing and heart rate. They’re the best to improve overall health and keep vital organs, most importantly your heart working properly.
Try doing any of the following activities for 5 minutes to increase health and lose weight.
Any variation of brisk walking, jogging, or running is the fastest way to get your heart pumping. For beginners, start by walking for 1 minute, jogging for 2, then walking for 1. Then, gradually increase to 1 minute jogging, 2 minutes running, 1 minute jogging.
If you’re stuck at home or in your office, take the stairs. For a little extra challenge climb two steps at a time instead of one or increase your speed. Feel free to add weight such as a heavy purse or briefcase for extra resistance.
Static exercises, such as jumping jacks or jumping rope, can be done in smaller spaces; you don’t even need a rope to enjoy the benefits! As with walking, apply interval training to jumping jacks to boost calorie burn. Insert 1 minute of high intensity jumping jacks surrounded by 2 minutes of moderate intensity.
5-Minute Exercises for Strength
These exercises are designed to build muscle strength and size. For more versatility, mix and match them according to your needs.
To strengthen thighs, do leg squats. Begin by standing with your back against the wall and slide down until you assume the position of sitting on a chair. Focus on holding your body against the wall with your legs to work your thighs.
Calf raises work your lower legs. Hold the wall with your hand and stand hip-width apart with your ankles, knees and hips vertically aligned. Rise to the balls of your feet. Lower and repeat.
Push-ups are the best exercise to strengthen your arms. Begin by kneeling on the ground, palms flat on the floor. Push your body into a plank position, resting on your toes and palms. Then, bend elbows and lower yourself until you almost touch the floor. Push yourself back up and repeat.
To give your abdominals a workout, try planking. It works all of your core muscles and doesn’t require much time. Rest on your knees and forearms to begin. When you’re reading to begin, push yourself onto your toes, so all of your weight is on your elbows. Hold your body straight and flat, as if your back is a plank of wood. Remain in this position for as long as possible.
5-Minute Exercises for Flexibility
Increased flexibility allows for improved mobility and range of motion while reducing the risk of joint and muscle pain.
The cobra pose stretches your back. Lie face down on the floor with your palms underneath your shoulders. To complete one rep, tighten your glutes, hamstrings, and calves before pushing your chest off the floor until your arms are almost straight. Make sure to keep your shoulders down. Relax and repeat.
Do the hamstring stretch by lying on your back and lifting one knee to your chest. To complete the stretch, lock hands behind thighs and straighten leg. Let your leg return to a position where it can be completely straightened and hold. Relax, and repeat on the other leg.
The triangle pose stretches your legs more fully. Take a step forward with one foot. Line up your feet so a vertical line runs from your front foot to your back foot. Both feet should be pointing the same direction. Then, bend over to try and touch your front toe. To increase difficulty, touch toes with one hand and lift the other in the air, chest facing the wall.
To do the basic arm stretch, lift one arm high above your head, and then lower your forearm until your hand touches your back. With the other hand, push your elbow slightly backwards until you feel comfortable pulling sensation. Hold, and then repeat on the other side.
The seated spinal twist stretches your hips. Sit on the ground with both legs straight in front of you. Bend one leg and cross it over the other, so your foot is flat on the ground. Holding onto your bent knee, twist your body and turn towards in that direction. If you’ve got your left knee bent, twist your body to the left.