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The 15-Minute Total-Body Workout You Can Do To Burn Calories

Maximizing your gym time is key when you're looking to get into shape.
FACT CHECKED BY Alexa Mellardo

Reaching your fitness goals, of course, involves motivation and dedication. It's so important to maximize the time you spend at the gym when you're trying to burn calories and get into shape, because let's be honest: We're all busy! Your day just got a lot less hectic, as we are here with a quick 15-minute total-body workout you can do to burn calories and speed up your weight loss efforts.

If you're under the impression that your gym time needs to be a long drawn-out process, we're here with an expert-approved routine that will prove you wrong. You can get in a killer fitness session in as little as 15 minutes, so you have no excuses for missing your full-body workouts. So let's get to it!

In order to make your time most effective to reach your fitness goals, it's important to focus on strength training exercises. These moves engage more muscle groups, are more challenging for you, and will burn more calories than cardio. Here's a 15-minute total-body workout that focuses on strength exercises to get you into shape. Set a timer for 15 minutes, and perform a giant circuit of the following exercises back to back.

1. Dumbbell Clean

dumbbell clean exercise part of 15-minute total-body workout
Tim Liu, C.S.C.S.

To kick off this 15-minute total-body workout, you'll start with the dumbbell clean, which will have you holding a dumbbell in both hands. Maintain a tall chest and a tight core as you press your hips back. Then, pop your hips forward, and "clean" the weight up to your shoulders. Next, squat down until your hips are parallel to the floor. Drive through the heels, and explode up. Press the weights up, and hold them with your elbows high. Reverse the motion by lowering the weights back down to the starting position before performing the next rep. Complete eight reps.

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2. Plank Open Row

Start the dumbbell plank open row by assuming a pushup/high plank position with a wide stance, gripping a pair of dumbbells that are resting on the ground. Keeping your core tight and your glutes squeezed, row one dumbbell up to your hip, then rotate the weight up and extend it straight toward the sky. Lower the dumbbell back down in the same pattern, then return to the pushup position before performing another rep with the other side. Complete five reps per arm.

3. Dumbbell Reverse Lunges to Step-ups

You'll begin dumbbell reverse lunges to step-ups in front of a workout bench while holding a pair of dumbbells. Perform a reverse lunge by stepping back with one leg and firmly planting your foot on the floor. Take that same leg, step through, and plant your heel firmly on top of the bench. Keeping your core tight, lean forward and drive through the heel, flexing your glute to come up. Reverse the motion and then perform another rep. Complete six to eight reps for each leg.

4. Dumbbell Press (1 ½ reps)

To perform the dumbbell press, grab a pair of dumbbells and hold them up at shoulder height with your palms facing each other. Press the dumbbells halfway up, then back down, and then all the way up. That counts as one rep. Complete eight reps.

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5. Dumbbell Drag Curls

Start dumbbell drag curls by holding a pair of dumbbells with your chest tall and your core tight. Next, initiate the motion by "dragging" the weight up your torso while bringing your elbows back until your hands are just about chest level. Flex your biceps hard, then lower under control until your arms are completely straight before performing another rep. Complete 12 reps.

6. Standing Overhead Dumbbell Triceps Extensions

Start this next exercise by grabbing a dumbbell with both hands and raising the weight overhead. While maintaining a tall chest and a tight core, lower the weight all the way down behind your head until your biceps touch your forearms. Get a solid stretch at the bottom of the motion, then extend your elbows back, flexing your triceps to finish. Complete 10 to 12 reps.

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7. Leg Lifts Over Dumbbell

Begin leg lifts by placing a dumbbell (or elevated marker) before you. With your feet straight and together, lift them up a few inches off the floor, then lift them above the dumbbell. Raise your legs over and back, maintaining tension in your core throughout the exercise. Complete 10 reps.

8. Double Dumbbell Crunches

This last exercise begins with you lying flat on your back, bending your knees, and holding a pair of dumbbells. With your arms straight, crunch up while pushing your arms toward the sky. Flex your abs hard at the top of the motion, then resist on the way down until you're back on the ground. Complete 10 to 15 reps.

Tim Liu, C.S.C.S.
Tim Liu, CSCS, is an online fitness and nutrition coach based in Los Angeles Read more about Tim
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