10 Ten-Minute Workout Ideas

By , Jessica Smith, Certified Personal Trainer
I know you are busy (that's the number one excuse I hear from people who aren't exercising regularly), but everyone's got at least 10 minutes to spare at some point during the day! And, even if you are managing several longer workouts each week, adding in 10-minute bouts of activity can help combat the dangerous effects of sitting for too long during the remaining hours of your day.
Print, "pin" or post this list somewhere you'll see it every day, and next time you find yourself with 10 extra minutes, fit in a little extra fitness—your body (and mind!) will thank you.
10-Minute Workout Ideas
  1. Do some cardio shopping. Each time you head to the grocery store or mall, spend 10 minutes power walking around the perimeter of the store before grabbing a cart. You can scope out items that are on sale, or decide which tempting treats to stay away from before starting to shop.
  1. Dance like no one is watching. Turn up your favorite playlist and dance your heart out for three full songs. Since most popular songs are about 3 1/2 minutes long, you won't need a timer. (This is definitely one of my favorite—and most fun—ways to ramp up my energy and burn a few extra calories!)
  1. Challenge the kids to a skipping contest. Skipping is great cardio exercise and an excellent lower body toner! See who can skip (forward and backwards) for a full 10 minutes around the yard.
  1. Stretch it out. Take a 10-minute timeout and find a quiet place to stretch. Start at the top of your body and work your way all the way down with some of your favorite, feel-good stretches while focusing on taking deep, relaxing breaths the entire time. (Try spending a minute with each one of these 10 stretches).
  1. Take a walking break during your workday. Walk or jog (or both) as far as you can for five minutes, and then turn around and head back. Weather not cooperating? Lap your home or office indoors if necessary. The view isn't what is important; instead, focus on standing tall, pumping your arms and getting your blood flowing.
  1. Squeeze in a "strength shot" before hitting the shower. Set a timer, and do one minute of each of the following: 1) squats, 2) push-ups, 3) lunges ,4) crunches, and 5) back extensions, twice through, for a 10-minute, do-anywhere strength routine that will pump you up and boost your energy.
  1. Heading upstairs? Try this "stair master: routine: Walk up one flight of stairs, and at the top, do 10 squats. Walk down the flight of stairs and do 10 jumping jacks. Repeat as many times as you can for 10 minutes.
  1. On the phone? Take your conversation laterally. Walk the length of the room you are in laterally (sideways), and then change arms/ears with the phone before heading back. (Make it harder by holding a squat position as you walk side to side).
  1. Jump to it! Grab a jump rope and practice different footwork with it for 10 minutes. Now 10-minutes of consecutive jumping is tough, so you may need to build up to it (especially if you haven't jumped rope in awhile). Alternate skipping rope with marching in place as often as needed. Don't have a rope at home? Just pretend. It's just as effective! Try this 10-Minute Jump Rope Workout from Coach Nicole for various footwork ideas mixed with recovery intervals.
  1.  Clean up—and shape up—with this CrossFit-inspired cleaning WOD (workout of the day). Most household chores double as a great total body exercises! Do as many "reps" as you can in 10 minutes of any of these activities: pick up and put away objects around the house, wash dishes, vacuum, sweep or mop floors, dust furniture, make beds, or fold laundry.
Tell me, what are some of YOUR favorite ways to squeeze in a little extra activity during your busy day?
About the Author
As someone who struggled to lose weight for years, Jessica found that the key to her own 40-pound weight loss was making small, healthy lifestyle changes that led to big, lasting results. Now, as a certified wellcoach, fitness instructor and personal trainer, she has spent the last 15 years helping students and clients reach their goals in New York City, Los Angeles and Miami, and now reaches millions online through her YouTube Channel and home exercise DVD series. Please visit jessicasmithtv.com/shop to learn more about her fun, results driven programs for all levels of exercisers.

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RAZZOOZLE 10/12/2020
thank you Report
GRANDMOTHER20 10/12/2020
Some good ideas I have not tried yet. I try to move as much as possible throughout the entire day - I don’t sit at my computer but stand and will do different moves while I work so I am not idle. Report
GMACAMI 9/23/2020
interesting article and comments Report
FISHGUT3 7/2/2020
thanks Report
BOXERLOVER77 4/22/2020
We have 4 1/2 acres and trees fall, lots of switches need cutting down, and plenty of other yard work. So I get both exercise and weight loss working and cleaning up the yard and property. I get 500 steps in to the barn and back to house!! Great way to get in shape!
KOALA_BEAR 12/8/2019
I have been feeling very lazy whenever not packing to move. Will give the dance to 3 songs a try as music does make time fly. I like to hula hoop altho not very hood yet so 10 min is about what I can handle. I do walk in the stores ( think Lowe's, Target or Walmart) & do PT twice a week. I need to start daily neighborhood walks again even if it's just around the block a couple times a day. Won't pay for a Cubii but you can buy those similar ones to cycle from a chair or under a desk for a lot less. Going to look into that for my holiday gift to myself & share w/ hubby. Thx! Report
Thanks Report
Thank you for these great ideas! Report
Great info! Report
Thamks Report
I think I will try dancing for 3 songs, about 10 minutes, great!!! Report
Great info! Thanks! Report
Great ideas! Thanks! Report
This is SO motivational. One of the best I've read. I'm going to move my computer so i can stand and then move outside for 5 minutes one way and then back home!
THANKS! Report
fantastic Report
You must speak straight so that your words may go as sunlight into our hearts. —COCHISE (HARDWOOD), CHIRACAHUA APACHE ~ 4/16/18 Report
I have been playing tennis twice a week and had not been finding time for any other exercise so I am glad to see this 10 minute exercise regime. Thank you. Report
Good ideas. Report
Some great ideas when you are pressed for time. Report
3-20-18... thanks... great ideas... Report
Great!! Report
Very nice Report
Thanks. Report
I love to run up and down my basement stairs for exercise. This gives me a very good workout. Report
Great ideas Report
Good suggestions. Thanks. Report
Good ideas, thanks! Report
Great ideas. Report
Excellent ideas! Report
Great ideas I don't have any kids but I have eight rescues I play with them every day great workout Report
Love dancing with my granddaughter Report
Dancing is so much fun!!! I also like to hula hoop when I have a catchy song I like. Makes you move like no one is watching!!! :) Report
For every trip to the ladies room while at work I do at least 10 squats. I'm lucky to have it to myself as I'm the only woman upstairs. Report
Great! Some new ideas and a reminder that it's always possible to fit movement into the day. Dancing in my spare time - such as it is - is such a good idea. Thank you. Report
Thank you! Report
Great helpful ideas thank you Report
Actually didn't think of some of the suggestions. Good thing I read this article! Report
Great ideas. Thank you. Report
Some of these ideas were fresh to me. They were nice to read. Report
Thanks for the ideas! Report
This is a really good article
I regularly walk as part of any shopping trip I need to do. Report
Great ideas! Report
I like the squats at the top of the stairs! Report
Excellent info ! Report
Excellent info ! Report
Great info Report
Great ideas! Report