Workout Routines

The 2-move workout program for maximum muscle in a short amount of time

Build total-body strength with only two exercises in this four-day workout program.

by
Pullup
Georgijevic / Getty
Georgijevic / Getty
Duration 15
Exercises 2
Equipment Yes

When you’re busy, there isn’t always time for a workout. One or two exercises maybe, but not an entire routine. Most of the time you skip it altogether; after all, what good is just a half-hour session? But that’s a mistake.

A short workout forces you to perform only the most essential exercises—the ones responsible for most of your gains—with an increased focus and intensity that revs your metabolism harder and keeps your heart rate elevated. Spend the holiday season mastering those cornerstone movements with this routine. When your calendar clears up again in the New Year, you’ll wonder who needs all that “extra” time anyway.

How it works

You need only two lifts per session: a main exercise that works multiple muscles, and one that enhances your ability to perform that lift. For example, the front squat works the lower body thoroughly, and the good morning directly strengthens the lower back and hamstrings, allowing you to use more weight on the squat.

The only catch when doing shorter workouts is that you need to compensate with volume—more sets—ensuring that you get the most work out of your muscles in the little time you have.

Directions

Perform each workout (Days I, II, III, and IV) once a week, resting a day between sessions. Choose a load that allows you to perform two more reps than prescribed, and use that weight on each set. The workouts should take 35 minutes.

The 2-Move Workout Program Workout I: Lower body

Exercise 1.

Front Squat You'll need: Barbell How to
Front Squat thumbnail
8 sets
5 reps
As needed rest

Exercise 2.

Good Morning You'll need: Resistance Band How to
Good Morning thumbnail
8 sets
10 reps
As needed rest

The 2-Move Workout Program Workout II: Chest and triceps

Exercise 1.

Dumbbell Bench Press You'll need: Dumbbells How to
Dumbbell Bench Press thumbnail
8 sets
15 reps
-- rest
As needed

Exercise 2.

Close-Grip Bench Press You'll need: Bench How to
Close-grip Bench Press thumbnail
8 sets
8 reps
As needed rest

The 2-Move Workout Workout III: Lower body and back

Exercise 1.

Deadlift You'll need: Barbell How to
Deadlift  thumbnail
9 sets
8, 5, 2 reps
As needed rest
Perform 8 reps the first set, 5 the second, and 2 the third; repeat this pattern for sets 4–9.

Exercise 2.

Pullup You'll need: Pullup Bar How to
Exercise: How to do an Eccentric Pullup thumbnail
9 sets
As many as possible reps
As needed rest

The 2-Move Workout Program Day IV: Shoulders and arms

Exercise 1.

Barbell Overhead Press You'll need: Barbell How to
Barbell Overhead Press thumbnail
10 sets
10 reps
As needed rest

Exercise 2.

Barbell Curl You'll need: Barbell How to
Barbell Curl thumbnail
10 sets
8 reps
As needed rest
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