Congratulations, you’ve taken the plunge and joined a gym. Sadly, despite the tedious induction and hard sell on the extras, that was the easy part. With membership fees now chomping a sizeable chunk of your monthly pay packet, making sure you get the most out of every workout is imperative.
But don’t worry: that doesn’t mean jumping straight on the squat rack with the vest-clad bros. All you need for this whole body workout from top osteopath PT James White is a couple of dumbbells and a good spot on the gym floor.
Complete this circuit three times with 30 seconds rest between each move. Reward yourself with a two-minute breather after each run through.
You might be surrounded by shiny new equipment, but don’t get ahead of yourself. You still need to get the basics right. Hit the floor with your arms fully extended and hands shoulder-width apart. Maintain a straight body from head to toe. Lower yourself until your chest is an inch from the ground before explosively driving up to the starting position. Too tough? Drop (to your knees) and give me 20.
Bodyweight Squats: 20 Reps
Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and, taking care to not arch your back, push your hips back and bend your knees. Lower your body until your thighs are parallel to the floor and then drive through your heels to push yourself back to the starting position. Once you’ve nailed the technique, try it with light dumbbells held at your sides – enjoy the side order of stomach muscles as you begin engaging your abs.
Standing dumbbell shoulder press – 15 reps
A pair of boulder shoulders is a beach season essential, and by perfecting this move the V-shape you covet will be yours in no time. Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and raise two dumbbells up to shoulder height, palms facing forwards. Extend your elbows to raise the weights directly above your head; lower under control.
Alternating Lunge – 20 reps
What good is a chiselled upper body if it’s perched atop a pair of skinny pins? Try this single leg exercise to see serious gains, seriously quickly. Hold a dumbbell in each hand and stand with your feet together. Step forward with your right foot and lower yourself until your right knee is an inch from the floor. Stand back up and repeat with the opposite foot.
Single Arm Row – 15 reps on each arm
Fledgling pectorals and a soon-to-be six-pack might be what you see in the mirror, but that doesn’t excuse you from working your back – this is a whole body workout, after all. Grab a dumbbell and find a flat bench. Place your right knee and right hand on the bench with your torso parallel to the floor. Use your free hand to pick up the dumbbell and pull it straight up to the side of your chest, with your elbow tucked in. Breathe in as you slowly lower it to the startingthat three times through? Time to wander over to the mirror and admire the fruits of your labour. It’s a swole new you.
This article originally appeared on Men’s Health UK