Even with all the best intentions and preparations, we know that breaking free from the never-ending spreadsheets, e-mails, meetings, reports and conference calls that shackle you to your work desk, and prevent you from a vital stress-busting 1pm workout, often proves too much of a challenge. It feels like the powers of Houdini are required to wriggle out from there and into the locker room, in a bid to avoid suffering yet another quick-fire supermarket sandwich in the discomfort of your office chair.

 

But what if you had a workout so rapid and effective, you could be on and off the gym floor in just half an hour? What if you had a routine time-sensitive enough to give your whole body a good going over and still have time to rehearse the China Report once more before delivering it to the board at 2pm?

This is where Third Space Elite personal trainer Tom Hall steps in.

“Trainers get the ‘What can I really do in thirty minutes?’ question all the time,” he says. “Believe or not, we don’t always need to completely exhaust ourselves for hours on end in the gym – doing that repeatedly can sometimes have a negative effect on your health and fitness. Even with just half an hour to play with, I can create a programme perfect for anyone looking to get a little stronger and bit leaner, all the while keeping to a tight schedule.”

Before getting stuck into one of Tom’s two supersets, there are a number of things to consider when it comes to time-effective training.

“There are four rules I keep to when developing a programme like this,” he says. “First, you really want to be full-body training. Next, make sure your focus is on big, basic movements, like pushes, pulls, squats and deadlifts. Third, you don’t want to take on any more than six exercises in one go, and finally, learn to love your limited rest times.”

Take a look at Thomas’s two 30-minute programmes below, and use them to claim back that all-important lunch hour as your own.

Day One

Superset 1

1A – Goblet Squat (5 sets, 11 reps)

1B – DB Floor Press (5 sets, 11 reps)

Rest – 45 seconds (after both exercises)

Superset 2

2A – Pull-Up (full or assisted, 4 sets, 8 reps)

2B – Kettlebell Swing (4 sets, 15 reps)

Rest – 45 seconds (after both exercises)

Conditioning (3-5 rounds)

3 – Battle Ropes to Plank (15 seconds each)

Day Two

Superset 1

1A – Trap Bar Deadlift (5 sets, 10 reps)

1B – TRX Row (5 sets, 14 reps)

Superset 2

2A – Barbell Bench Press (3 sets, 8 Reps)

2B – Goblet Reverse Lunges (3 sets, 8 reps each side)

Rest – 45 seconds (after both exercises)

Conditioning (3-5 rounds)

3 – Sled Push to Medicine Ball Rotational Wall Slams (15 seconds each)