Crush your workout goals
Mini workouts are intermittent exercise sessions that range between five and 10 minutes and are scheduled at intervals in a day
The pandemic saw an uptick in the sales of fitness equipment as citizens across the country were happy to use any extra time they could afford in between their work-from-home routines to exercise and reach their fitness goals. Now, as offices re-open slowly after transitioning from a hybrid work model, time is at a premium again due to which physical health is once again taking a backseat for some people.
Just the thought of allotting an hour to a workout session can act as a barrier for many people who are trying to get back to the activity. However, given time constraints and hectic schedules, mini workouts have now gained popularity. In fact, studies have shown that splitting up your workout schedule throughout the day is as effective as sweating it out in the gym for hours.
More than a fad
Mini workouts are intermittent exercise sessions that range between five and 10 minutes and are scheduled at intervals in a day. Author and holistic fitness coach from South Delhi, Vesna Pericevic Jacob—she is the founder of Vesna’s alta Celo—mentions, “Mini workouts are very efficient and effective. Doing it a few times a day, as many minutes as you can, and consistently, can give you great results because your body does not know where you are at—if you are in the gym or somewhere else. The body only recognises the movement.”
Given the sedentary lifestyles most people lead nowadays, workouts like these can be extremely advantageous especially as it keeps the body active throughout the day. Gagan Arora, celebrity trainer, lifestyle coach, and founder of Kosmic Fitness, shares, “It is important to be active throughout the day, which is why you should try and incorporate such mini workouts in your day-to-day activities.
For instance, instead of sitting at a desk, you can stand or use a standing desk. Sitting in front of a computer for three hours can gradually deteriorate the quality of your life. So, integrating movements in daily, simple activities is way more important than completing a 20 minute workout every single day.”
Elaborating how long a mini workout should be, Vesna adds, “Mini workouts are done in as little as two to five minutes or at the most 10-minutes. It’s absolutely beneficial and I would recommend it to everyone.”
Engage and stay fit
Gurugram-based bodyweight master coach and founder of Botfit, a bodyweight fitness academy, Hemant mentions “intensity, technique, consistency, and nutrition” are four main pointers to keep in mind when working out.
He adds that depending on the goal they have in mind, one must break their workout sessions into mini workouts, “You can break your exercise sessions into four or two mini workouts. However, the structure of your workout should be defined and you should also plan what [the different body parts] you want to focus on. The structure should be in a way that first you warm up. Then, you focus on the strength part as the body needs energy to focus on it. You can then do cardio, and finally cool down. This can be divided into four smaller workouts.”
For people who have extremely busy schedules, Arora mentions trying out a routine that is more flexible in nature. “If you have less time every single day, try some flexibility sessions such as animal flow or Yoga postures, which are more fluid and dynamic in nature. Animal Flow is more engaging and more dynamic than just a regular stretch. Such workouts are extremely beneficial as they incorporate a range of movements and so you don’t need that extra time [to focus on different parts].”
SWEAT IT OUT IN INTERVALS
There has been an increase in injuries due to people leading sedentary lifestyles, shares Dr Gurinder Bedi, Director-Orthopaedics at Fortis Hospital, Vasant Kunj. Bedi adds, “The pandemic has taken a heavy toll on people’s health, especially those who already had ailments related to joints, bones, or muscles. During the pandemic, the situation has grown worse for such patients as their joints became much stiffer, muscles became weaker, balancing mechanisms worsened owing to restricted movement.” Talking about mini workouts being beneficial, Bedi adds, “Getting the schedule right with a combination of stretching exercises, alignment, and some strength training is the ideal combination in a mini workout.”