In my opinion, taking time for yourself to work out is one of the best forms of self-care. But if you’re not sure what to do in the gym, it might not feel all that rejuvenating. Instead of letting stress creep up as you scan the gym to figure out which machines are free and if you can snag a squat rack, I recommend coming in with a plan of action. Whether you’re following a workout plan or showing up already knowing what you’re going to do for the day, preparation makes your workouts a lot smoother — and that’s where this full-body gym workout comes in.
This full-body workout for the gym (which you can also do at home, with the right equipment) consists of just eight moves but truly works your whole body. You’ll be targeting your shoulders, biceps, back, glutes, quads, and core with these moves, and the whole thing shouldn’t take more than 45 minutes, which is about how long you might spend wandering around the gym looking for open equipment.
All you need to get this full-body gym workout done is some dumbbells, a workout bench or step, and a stability ball — but just in case you don’t have those last two items (or people are hogging them in the weight room), we’ll offer easy swaps. Check out the full gym workout below for a much more efficient routine, and get ready to work!
45-Minute Full-Body Gym Workout
Equipment needed: Two sets of dumbbells; one set should be medium/heavy and the second set should be light. (Here’s more on how to choose the right weight.) You’ll also need a stability ball and a workout bench or step.
Directions: Make sure you warm up beforehand, for example with these (warmup exercises). To help you save time, this workout should be performed in supersets, meaning you’ll alternate two exercises, taking little to no rest in between each move. For example, you’ll do a set of the overhead squat press and immediately transition to bicep curls. Then, you’ll go repeat these two moves until you’ve completed the listed number of sets. There are three total supersets, and you’ll do the last two exercises separately, not as supersets. Afterward, don’t forget to do a cooldown stretch.
- Superset 1, exercise 1: overhead squat press: four sets of 12 reps
- Superset 1, exercise 2: bicep curl: four sets of 12 reps (each arm)
- Superset 2, exercise 1: single-leg bridge: four sets of 12 reps (each leg)
- Superset 2, exercise 2: single-arm row: four sets of 12 reps (each arm)
- Superset 3, exercise 1: step up: four sets of 10 reps (each leg)
- Superset 3, exercise 2: lateral raise: four sets of 10 reps
- Stir the pot: two sets of 10 reps each direction
- Bird dog: two sets of 10 reps on each side
— Additional reporting by Lauren Mazzo