Chris Hemsworth, the Almighty Thor actor, posted a workout video on his Instagram on Wednesday and it’s only 10 minutes long.
Ten-minute workout videos have been around for years, but their popularity skyrocketed when the pandemic forced people in.
For those new to confinement, these videos were an opportunity to get comfortable in a fitness routine.
But, do they work?
Something is better than nothing
Simply put, consistency is key and quality takes precedence over quantity.
“We don’t want to speak out against the misconception that 10 minutes is the maximum you need, but we are realistic with what some of us have,” said Adala Bolto, Founder and CEO of ZADI Training. TSTIME.
“If you can’t do more than 10 minutes, then 10 minutes is always better than zero.”
Flow Athletic director Ben Lucas said the 10-minute workouts aren’t intimidating and that’s a huge plus.
They give people a chance to build their confidence in their ability to do certain exercises.
Compared to hour-long workouts, exercising for 10 minutes seems much more achievable and can be done consistently.
“Sixty minutes can get you more results, but if you don’t do the job because it intimidates you, it only leads to zero results,” Lucas said.
The right intensity
Since we compromise on training time, Ms. Bolto said 10-minute workouts can be effective as long as they are done daily.
Exercising at the right intensity can also help you get the most from your workouts.
And that’s when your heart rate kicks in.
Heart rate training uses a percentage of your maximum heart rate (HRM) as an intensity guide during training.
“We know that 65% of your maximum heart rate is more moderate intensity, while 75% and above becomes higher intensity training,” Ms. Bolto said.
“We want to dial that intensity up to 80%.”
This is why HIIT (High-Intensity Interval Training) has been the “it” workout for the past few years.
“High intensity workouts are so popular because this is where we burn more calories,” Ms. Bolto said.
HIIT workouts often combine short periods of intense exercise with periods of rest or low-intensity movements.
“Even after we stop, the fat burning continues.”
This is due to the afterburning effect, also known as excessive oxygen uptake after exercise (EPOC). It refers to the increase in the level of oxygen that your body absorbs to recover after a workout.
Oxygen helps repair muscles, balances hormones, and restores oxygen levels in the blood.
All of this recovery takes energy, which is on top of your total calories burned.
Set realistic expectations
It is important to keep in mind that any exercise, no matter how long, is gradual. That will take time.
Set realistic expectations for the kind of goals you can achieve after 10 minutes of exercise.
Sadly, a single video won’t turn you into Chris Hemsworth overnight.
“But you can still work out at your 80% version of your maximum heart rate,” Ms. Bolto said.
For beginners, Mr. Lucas said you should always slow down, even if the workout is short.
Focus on consistency rather than intensity, and don’t forget to include a warm-up and cool-down.
Once you are confident in your abilities, find ways to challenge yourself.
Increase the number of repetitions you do or the weight so that you get stronger over time.
Mr. Lucas recommended compound movements like squats, lunges, and push-ups, which work multiple muscle groups at the same time.