No time? No mental space to memorize a complicated routine? Justin Palopoli, 24 Hour Fitness district manager, says choose these four moves (plus one for warming up and one for cooling down), and a pair of dumbbells. You’ll work the major muscles and the small stabilizing ones in your upper and lower body, raise your heart rate and challenge your range of motion and mobility.

Complete two to three rounds of the workout circuit for an efficient, total-body sweat session.


Jumping Jacks

  • Stand with your feet hip-width apart and your arms at your sides.
  • Jump with both feet wider than shoulder-width and sweep your hands out to your sides and up overhead.
  • Reverse the motion, jumping your feet together and sweeping your arms back down to your sides. Continue jumping for 60 seconds.



Squat and Overhead Press

  • Stand with your feet hip-width apart and hold a dumbbell in each hand, with your hands at your sides.
  • As you sit your hips back and down into a squat, curl the dumbbells up to shoulder height.
  • Push through your heels and keep your knees wide as you rise to standing, and brace your core as you press the dumbbells straight up until your biceps frame your ears.
  • Bend your elbows and lower the dumbbells to shoulder height as you sit down and back into a squat again. Continue for 10 to 12 reps.
  • TIP: Move smoothly from squatting and curling to standing and pressing and back again.

Romanian Deadlift to Biceps Curl

  • Stand with feet hip-width apart, holding a dumbbell in each hand, with your hands at your sides. Option for single-leg movement: Shift your weight to one leg.
  • Slowly hinge forward at your hips, letting your arms extend to the floor and the dumbbells lower to knee height or slightly lower. Single-leg option: As you hinge, let your free extend behind you.
  • Engage your glutes and core as you rise to standing. Single-leg option: Lower your free leg as you rise to standing.
  • Bend your elbows to curl the dumbbells to your shoulders and then lower the dumbbells slowly to return to your starting position.
  • Repeat 10 to 12 reps on one side, and then complete 10 to 12 reps on the other side.


Bent-Over Row to Triceps Extension

  • Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart. Grasping a lightweight dumbbell in each hand, bend your knees slightly and hinge forward.
  • Engage your core, pull your shoulder blades together and bend your elbows to row the dumbbells to either side of your rib cage.
  • Keeping your upper arms still, extend your lower arms behind you to raise the dumbbells to the ceiling.
  • Keeping your upper arms still, bend your elbows and move only your lower arms to return to your ribs. Then extend your arms to the floor to return to your starting position.
  • Complete 10 to 12 reps.

Side Plank Crunch to Thread the Needle

  • Lie on your right side and lift your torso to rest your weight on your right forearm with your shoulders stacked over your right elbow and your feet stacked. (Option: Extend your right arm.)
  • Lift your hips into a side plank and extend your top (left) arm.
  • Bring your top (left) knee toward your left ribs, keeping your body long and strong, as you bend your left elbow to meet it.
  • Straighten your top (left) leg and arm. Then bend your left arm and rotate your body to reach under your right armpit.
  • Rotate back to return to side plank, extending your left arm again. Repeat 12 reps and switch sides.



Child’s Pose

  • Start on your hands and knees with your feet together and your knees apart.
  • Walk your hands out in front of you and bend at your hips until your head comfortably touches the floor.
  • Lower your hips toward your feet and your chest toward the floor.
  • Hold the stretch. Practice breathing through your nose, inhaling for a count of 4, holding for a count of 4, and exhaling for a count of 4. Repeat for 60 seconds.

Photo credit: GABRIELLE LUTZE, Stocksy
GIFs: Mark Kuroda,
Model: Justin Palopoli, 24 Hour Fitness