If you have a busy life, then it can be hard to fit exercise in. But workouts don’t have to be long gym sessions. This plan consists of 10 minutes exercise a day on 6 days a week, giving you a total of an hour’s exercise a week. You can download a free printable copy of the plan at the bottom of the post.
Safety note: please read these exercise safety guidelines before doing this workout. Please also be aware that the plank exercise, in which a static contraction is held, can cause an increase in blood pressure. If you suffer from high blood pressure, you should leave this exercise out.
You’ll need a soft surface to lie on for this workout. If you don’t have an exercise mat, then use a folded blanket or quilt.
10 minutes exercise a day schedule
Monday and Thursday – 10 minute interval walk
The interval walk is the cardio part of the program. Cardio exercise is anything we do continuously for several minutes to several hours. Regular cardio exercise makes our hearts bigger and stronger and reduces the risk of heart disease. This is a simple interval walk, using a combination of normal pace and fast walking, to help you get your heart rate up and improve your cardio fitness.
Tuesday and Saturday – abs & upper body routine
As well as looking good, having strong abs stabilises the spine and pelvis and improves posture. There are 3 ab exercises in this plan: crunches for the “6-pack”, Russian twists for the oblique abdominal muscles and the plank for the deep transverse muscle which pulls the abdominal area in. Upper body exercises also help with posture and tone the upper arms, shoulders and chest. Do the routine twice.
- Lay with knees bent, feet flat on the floor about hip distance apart.
- Engage your abdominal muscles and curl your spine smoothly away from the floor.
- Stop when your shoulder blades have left the floor and start to reverse the movement.
- Start by sitting with a straight back, knees bent and feet flat on the floor, about hip distance apart.
- Engage your abdominal muscles and lower your back towards the floor, until it is at about 45° to the floor.
- Maintaining the angle of your back with the floor, reach from side to side with your arms.
- Kneel on the floor
- Lean forwards and put your forearms on the floor, making sure your shoulders are directly above your elbows.
- Straighten one leg out behind you, with your toes on the floor.
- Engage your core strongly and extend the other leg behind.
- Now hold this position for a count of 20.
Wall press up
- Stand at arms length from the wall, feet hip distance apart.
- Place your palms on the wall at chest height, a bit wider than shoulder distance.
- Allow your arms to bend at your elbows as you lean towards the wall, keeping your body in a straight line.
- Push yourself away from the wall back to your starting position.
- Stand with your feet about hip distance apart and take your arms up to shoulder height. Keep your shoulders relaxed – don’t shrug.
- Keeping your arms straight, circle them for the given no. of reps clockwise and then reverse the direction.
- After doing the arm circles, keep your arms raised out to the side.
- Keeping your arms straight, touch your hands above your head, then reverse the movement.
Wednesday and Sunday – legs exercises – do routine 3 times
Thigh and butt tone can be a problem for women, because we tend to store fat here. This 10 minute mat workout focuses on these problem areas, with exercises to lift and firm.
Side leg raise
- Lay on your side with your head supported on your arm and your other arm in front to help steady your body.
- Bend your underneath leg a little to give you a comfortable base of support.
- Making sure you don’t allow your body to lean backwards, lift and lower your leg. Keep your foot flexed and pointed slightly towards the floor.
- Start in an all-fours kneeling position.
- Keeping your back in place and your knee bent to 90°, lift one leg out to to side.
- Lift as high as you can without rotating your spine, then lower and repeat.
- Get into an all-4s kneeling position.
- Making sure you keep your back held straight and your knee flexed at 90°, lift one leg up towards the ceiling.
- Stop when your thigh is parallel to the floor.
- Lower and repeat.
Download a copy of the 10 minutes exercise a day plan
Sign up for My Fitness Planner updates and get a link to the free printable download of this workout, including instructions for all the exercises, e-mailed to you:
After you sign up, you’ll get 2 e-mails, one will have a link to your printable download and the other will be a welcome e-mail.
If the e-mails haven’t turned up within a few minutes, please check your junk folder, as some service providers have very strict filters.
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