7 Minute Workout Exercises

7 Minute Workout Exercises

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Basic exercises like push-ups help make the 7-minute workout speedy.

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Seven minutes to a fitter, healthier you requires a few short fitness routines that can offer the appeal of an abbreviated workout. Originally designed with 12 exercises to cater to busy executives and others who need to work out whenever and wherever they can fit a few fitness moments in, 7-minute workouts have mass allure because they don't require equipment and they're time efficient. You'll get a full-body strength training simultaneously with your cardio workout, helping with weight loss and aerobic conditioning all at once.

The Basic Workout

The basic 12 exercises performed in the 7-minute workout are effective and can be individually designed using alternative exercises. In their article on high intensity circuit training for the "American College of Sports Medicine," Brett Klika and Chris Jordan tell readers that exercises you choose to do in a 7-minute routine should meet seven criteria. The exercises you do should develop strength in all major muscle groups. They should recruit large muscle groups for resistance and aerobic intensity. There should be a variety of exercises so you get a balanced full-body workout instead of one that concentrates on one or two muscle groups. You should be able to modify the exercises to increase or decrease the intensity. The exercises should be safe and be able to be performed without specialized equipment. And, finally, you should be able to move from one exercise to the next easily and quickly while maintaining an increased heart rate.The original 12 exercises for a 7-minute workout are jumping jacks, wall sit, push-up, abdominal crunch, step-up, squat, triceps dip, plank, high knees running in place, lunge, push-up and rotation and side plank.


To complete 12 exercises in a seven minute block of time, you have to keep the pace fast. Spending roughly 30 seconds on each exercise should allow you to be able to do 15 to 20 reps of each and give you a few seconds between exercises for brief rests. Aiming for at least 15 reps should provide you with the intensity to get your heart rate up and make the most of the metabolic effect of each exercise.

Alternative to the Basic

The callisthenic-type exercises that make up the basic 7-minute workout are effective, but they are, well, basic. Keeping in mind the rules for choosing exercises, Jessica Matthews of the American Council on Exercise gave the 7- minute workout an upgrade by substituting exercises that will give enhanced results over the original 12 exercises. Matthews recommends a 7-minute workout that includes the icky shuffle, the eagle pose, plank-ups, high/low boat, surfer steps, single-leg glute bridges, triceps kickbacks, walking planks, lateral shuffles with cone hops, plyo lunges with toe drags, push-ups with a twist and side planks with thread the needle.

Selecting Exercises

You can individualize your 7-minute routine by choosing moves that you are comfortable with in the beginning to get started. Using a chair for the step-ups and the triceps dip are helpful and purchasing a yoga mat that can travel easily will also help with moves that may be a little more challenging.


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