The 10-Minute Workout To Try If You're Not Going Back To The Gym Anytime Soon

woman practicing bridge pose at home in living room

These days, at-home fitness options are a plenty. From live Instagram workouts to streaming classes, there's literally a garden variety at your fingertips. That said, it's possible you might still have difficulty working these sessions into your workday. So, when you only have a few minutes to spare, it's helpful to have some low-maintenance moves up your sleeve that'll get you moving in a pinch. In fact, a solid 10-minute workout is often all you need to engage your muscles and your body.

Just ask celebrity Pilates instructor, Nonna Gleyzer. With high-profile clients like Kerry Washington, Gisele Bündchen, and Emma Roberts, Gleyzer has made a successful career out of giving A-listers a great workout, so it's no surprise she knows a few fitness hacks to squeeze in when you're short on time. In an interview with The Zoe Report, the Pilates pro explains that, with so many individuals in indoors and in quarantine, it's more important than ever to stay active and keep the body moving however you can. "Any physical activity works," she says. "Take a walk, do some cardio and get some fresh oxygen in the lungs." She also suggests a few minutes of strengthening exercises a few times a week.

In fact, study published in Neuropsychologia found that just 10 minutes of moderate to vigorous exercise (cycling was used in the research) significantly improves brain function. And, in another 2019 study published by the British Journal of Sports Medicine found that 10 to 59 minutes of light-to-moderate intensity exercise can reduce the risk of an early death (compared to sedentary individuals).

So, if you're looking for a quick and convenient way to get moving, ahead, Gleyzer demonstrates the 10-minute workout circuit you can do anywhere, anytime — even if you have an aversion to exercise!

At-Home Workout Move: Bridge Pose With Toe Lift

"This works your calves, ankles, hamstrings, and glutes, in addition to the whole back of your legs," says Gleyzer. Simply hold a bridge pose (keeping your core engaged) and lift and lower your toes off the floor 10 to 15 times.

At-Home Workout Move: Hip Bridge Circles

As you hold the same bridge pose as above, lift and lower your hips in controlled circular motions 10 to 15 times. "To really work your glutes and inner thighs make sure you squeeze your glutes together the entire time," advises Gleyzer.

At-Home Workout Move: Butterfly Bridge

To continue to give your glutes a workout, lift the hips off the ground while your heels are together but your toes are apart (in a V-shape), and move your legs apart and together, like a butterfly, for 10 to 15 slow reps.

At-Home Workout Move: Sitting Arm Circles

"If you're tired at your desk and want to wake up your arms, this is a great exercise, says Gleyzer. This can be done in any sitting position, whether on the floor, couch, or in a chair. Simply hold your arms up and move them in circles 10 to 15 times in both directions.

At-Home Workout Move: Arm Twists

Keep the arm workout going by lifting your arms as you did above and, this time, do small, twisting motions back and forth 10 to 15 times. (You can elevate this move by holding weights or water bottles while you twist.)

At-Home Workout Move: Airplane Arms + Head Rotation

While on your knees, extend the arms behind the back, palms up, and lift them slightly. Hold the arms lifted while you look right, left, and center, then lower the arms. Repeat this move slowly and controlled 20 times. "This is amazing for people with neck pain or aches," says Gleyzer. "It also works the triceps and the spine."

At-Home Workout Move: Airplane Pulses

While your arms are extended behind you, palms still up, shift them up and down in small pulsed movements 20 times.

Study cited:

Samani, Ashna, and Matthew Heath. “Executive-Related Oculomotor Control Is Improved Following a 10-Min Single-Bout of Aerobic Exercise: Evidence from the Antisaccade Task.” Neuropsychologia, vol. 108, 2018, pp. 73–81., doi:10.1016/j.neuropsychologia.2017.11.029.

Zhao, Min, et al. Beneficial Associations of Low and Large Doses of Leisure Time Physical Activity with All-Cause, Cardiovascular Disease and Cancer Mortality: a National Cohort Study of 88,140 US Adults. 1 Nov. 2019, bjsm.bmj.com/content/53/22/1405.