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30-Minute Workout Template for the Busy Professional

One of the most common excuses for adults not exercising is “I’m too busy.” Another statement about working full-time and/or having kids is typically used right after that one to try and justify them being too busy to workout.

While I’m not saying that being a full-time employee and a wife/husband with kids isn’t a ton of work (because it is), there's still no excuse for not taking care of your body and health.

Busy professionals often struggle with “finding” the time to fit in a workout a few times per week when they should be making the time. Taking care of your body should be a priority, not something that's tossed in throughout the week as an afterthought.

With all of this in mind, I’ve put together a 30-minute workout template for busy professionals to follow. When used correctly (consistency, good form, proper diet, etc.), this program can be very effective. I know because I’ve used it with some of my own clients.

While there is certainly nothing wrong with working out for a longer period of time, keeping the template to 30 minutes encourages more drive to do it. There are no reasons why you can’t set aside at least 30 minutes for yourself a few time each week.

The Template

A1. Lower Body Pull

A2. Upper Body Push

B1. Lower Body Push

B2. Upper Body Pull

C1. Abdominals

Perform 3 sets of 8-15 repetitions for each exercise. If you are doing a loaded carry for C1, do 3 sets of at least 15-20 yards.

There it is. Straight to-the-point with all of the basic compound movements: presses, pulls, hinges, squats, and loaded carries. The basic compound exercises should always be the focus of a fitness training program. This is especially true when you’ve only got 30 minutes to work with.

A1 and A2, and B1 and B2 are set up as supersets. This means that they are completed back to back with minimal rest. For example, you would perform the A1 exercise and immediately go to A2 after. Once you are done with both, rest anywhere from 0-60 seconds and then start the next set. For C1, rest 30-60 seconds between each set.


Below are lists of exercises that can be used for each category of the template. Always be sure to start light and work your way up in weight when doing a new exercise.

Lower Body Pull Exercises:

  • Barbell or Kettlebell Deadlift

  • Barbell or Kettlebell or Dumbbell Romanian Deadlift

  • Barbell or Kettlebell or Dumbbell Single Leg Romanian Deadlift

  • Kettlebell Swings

  • Glute Ham Raise

  • Barbell or Resistance Band Good Mornings

Upper Body Push Exercises:

  • Barbell or Dumbbell Bench Press

  • Barbell or Dumbbell Incline Bench Press

  • Barbell or Dumbbell Floor Press

  • Barbell or Dumbbell Overhead Press

  • Barbell or Dumbbell Push Press

  • Push Ups

Lower Body Push Exercises:

  • Barbell Squats

  • Goblet Squats

  • Barbell Front Squats

  • Barbell or Dumbbell Lunge

  • Barbell or Dumbbell Split Squat

  • Barbell or Dumbbell Step Ups

Upper Body Pull Exercises:

  • Pull Ups or Assisted Pull Ups

  • Barbell or Dumbbell Row

  • Chest-Supported Dumbbell Row

  • Cable Row

  • Lat Pulldown

  • Dumbbell Pullover

Abdominal Exercises:

  • Dumbbell or Kettlebell Farmer’s Walk

  • Dumbbell or Kettlebell Suitcase Carry

  • Dumbbell or Kettlebell Rack Carry

  • Dumbbell or Kettlebell Waiter’s Carry

  • Plank or Side Plank

  • Reverse Crunch

Simply plug in the exercise you want for each category and follow the workout. You can, and should, switch out exercises for each category when doing the workout on different days. Your first workout of the week could utilize the barbell squat for your lower body push exercise and the second workout could use dumbbell split squats, for example.

There are many other exercises and variations that could be used for each category. However, I’ve provided enough of the basics to keep you busy for a while. I recommend sticking with the same exercises of a given workout day for 4-6 weeks before switching them for new ones.

Try to get at least three of these workouts done every week with at least a day of rest in between. Staying committed to getting at least three workouts in will keep you on the right track to positive results.

Another factor that will keep you on the track to positive results is eating right. A proper diet is necessary no matter what your goals are. You can exercise all you want, but if you’re not fueling your body properly the exercise won’t show. You need to eat well to show well.


I hope this article inspires busy professionals to get to the gym and improve their health. Following the template above will ensure that you have a solid fitness training program in place. Stick with it and enjoy the benefits!

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