Here's a myth that needs some debunking.

Fitness is some secret code and you must spend at least 60 minutes a day 6 days per week if you even hope to see any type of positive result.

What I say is that fitness is an ideology but the requirements much less and are subjective to the user.

You can go very far on a modest commitment of 5-20 minutes a day. Without sounding like an infomercial what I want you to think about is the last time you went to the gym and worked out.

How much time was actually spent doing work? Was it closer to the action in a baseball game or a rugby match? 

5 minutes of planking is a whole heck of a lot of core work. 5 minutes of pushups is too. 5 minutes of squats with only your body weight is also a commendable effort. Add all of those up and you've got your 15 planned minutes and a solid workout that is easily scaleable to suit the beginner all the way up to an advanced athlete.

I say "planned minutes" because recovery time is just as important as the exercise itself. We time these things because we don't want you milling around until you feel like hitting your next set. After all, you've got a life to lead, remember?  

An example of scaling this might be an EMOM (every minute on the minute) template to your work effort. Since a 5 minute plank is tough for most of us to do why not try a 40/20 split? 40 seconds on then 20 seconds off. Too easy? 50/10 then. To difficult? Dial it back on the scale. The point is to find what works for you and stick to it until it's easy. 

Once you have hit the easy phase with one exercise then change to formula. Do yourself a favor and only change one variable at a time. For example, don't change the work/rest ratio of your pushups and the type of pushups you're doing at the same time. It won't end well. If something is too hard then scale it back but don't make it too easy. 

Here's the point- In order to get anywhere you really have to make healthy life habits out of the decisions that you make and make them over and over on a daily basis...but they're usually very small habits and all it really takes is 15 minutes a day.

Yes you'll be sweaty and you'll probably want to stretch out a bit afterward but if we can build skyscrapers and send people to the moon a little sweat and stretching only adds character.

Here's to our health. All the best. 

*Philip Levi is a competitive Obstacle Course Racer who has been a Fitness Professional since 2007. He owns a training studio in Burlingame, California and is the co-host of "The Obstacle Order Podcast". You can find him on social media @Trainerflip, @Burlingamefitness & @theobstacleorder

Feb 23, 2017 | SWEAT OF THE WEEK