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Fast Workout Routine #1

One of the most common reasons people give for not working out is, “I don’t have time.”

This is fair – we’re all busy and sometimes getting to the gym can seem daunting.

To help you overcome that, over the next 5 Sundays I will be giving you short (20 minutes or less) and effective workouts that you can do at home (or the gym if you choose) with a pair of weights, a mat and sometimes a chair.

Short, but Effective Workout Routine #1
Today is the first of those routines called “A Different Type of Ladder.”

This routine is simple (not necessarily easy) consisting of only 3 exercises:

1. Push-ups
2. Goblet Squats
3. Bent-Over Rows

A Ladder Routine is one in which you go up in reps, hit a peak and then come back down. For this routine, you will be doing

  1. 5 reps of every exercise (5 reps of push-ups, then 5 reps of Goblet Squats, and finally Bent-Over Rows)
  2. 10 reps of every exercise
  3. 15 reps of every exercise
  4. 20 reps, then back down
  5. 15 reps of every exercise
  6. 10 reps of every exercise
  7. 5 reps of every exercise

Here’s a 2 minute video of the exercises, with descriptions below the video:


Start in a push-up position (aka, on your toes and with your hands under your shoulders), keeping your hips in line with your shoulders the whole time. From there, bend at your shoulders and elbows, making sure to not flare your elbows out when you go down, bringing your chest to the floor. Push-up to the starting position.

If this is too difficult, you can do a modified push-up by dropping to your knees doing the same movement, making sure to keep a straight line from your knees, hips and shoulders.

Goblet Squats

Start by holding a weight with the bottom portion of your palms holding the top of one side of a weight. Keep your elbows tucked in, feet about shoulder width apart.

Move your hips back and down and get as low as you can, while not allowing your knees to cave in.

Bent Over Rows

Stand, holding a dumbbell in each hand. Shoot the hips back, keeping a flat back and allowing the weights to hang down in front of you. Bring the weights up towards your chest, allowing your hands to turn a little and then return the weights to the starting position.

Frequently Asked Questions


Try to rest as little as possible throughout this whole sequence. The less rest, the harder the workout will be. The more rest, the easier it will be.

Time to Complete

This workout should take between 10 and 20 minutes to complete.


Use whatever your feel most comfortable using. For most women, I would start with a 15-lb dumbbell for the goblet squats and at least 10’s for the bent-over rows. For men, I would use at least a 25-lb dumbbell for the goblet squats and at least 15’s to 20’s for the bent-over rows.

With that said, you can always use more weight or less, but I wouldn’t recommend going too light.

Stop If…

If your form breaks down or you feel any pain (not a muscle burning from doing the work) either stop the movement or adjust it.

If you have any questions, let me know.