Full Body Dumbbell Workout – The Perfect Workout for a Busy Schedule

For lots of people the hardest part about exercising is having the time to do it. Your life is already busy, who has two hours to spare to drive to the gym to do a workout?

You could maybe squeeze in a few trips to the gym in a month but we already know that isn’t enough to get the results you’re after. The key to success is consistency! So instead of beating yourself up over it or making excuses for not having the time, why not pick a workout that works in your schedule.

If you only have a few hours per week to workout then you need to find a workout that hits all muscle groups but one that you can still do at home. A routine that allows you to train to failure once in a while to maximize your results. A full body workout that you actually feel like you lifted weights when you’re done.

Checkout my full body dumbbell workout that I slip in to my routine when I have a busy week ahead. Doing this workout every other day or every three days can net you the same results as a trip to the gym and will definitely get better results than making excuses will!

Renegade Rows

The core and the back are the main muscle groups worked during this exercise. More specifically, the renegade row targets the traps and lats in your upper back, as well as the rectus abdominus and the obliques in your core and the glutes and hamstrings of the lower body. Another of the main muscles worked by renegade rows is the biceps.

Begin by picking a set of dumbbells that you would use for dumbbell rows and would have you fail in the 10-12 repetition range.

  • Get in to a plank position with a dumbbell in each hand and feet hip width apart.
  • Squeezing your glutes, hamstrings and core muscles to prevent allowing your body to rotate, engage the lats to row one dumbbell up until your elbow is behind you.
  • Lower the dumbbell back to the floor and complete a row with the other arm.

This is one repetition. Be sure to keep your whole body tight to keep your balance and prevent too much twisting of the upper body.

Dumbbell Thrusters

Dumbbell Thrusters are a great full body workout, they have the benefits of a squat working the lower body and core and then the upper body workout with the press over head.

  • Stand with your feet shoulder width apart and a dumbbell in both hands.
  • Raise the dumbbells up to just above resting on your shoulders.
  • Push your hips back and squat down until your quadriceps are parallel to the floor.
  • Drive your heels in to the ground as you stand up and press the dumbbells overhead.
  • Slowly lower the dumbbells back to the pressing position and start your next rep.

Dumbbell Reverse Lunge Curl

The reverse lunge is a unilateral exercise that helps to target imbalances between your left and right sides, with this variation you add a biceps curl to increase the muscles targeted. To perform the exercise pick a set of dumbbells that you can curl 10-12 times before failing.

  • Stand holding a dumbbell in each hand with your feet hip width apart.
  • Step backwards with one leg landing with the ball of your foot on the ground, drop down until your knees are at 90-degree angles, simultaneously curling both dumbbells up while squeezing your biceps at the top.
  • Push through the heel of your stationary leg as you stand back up, and lower the dumbbells to your sides.
  • Bring your trailing foot back to hip width apart .

You can alternate which foot you step back with or complete all of your reps for one leg before switching to the other.

Dumbbell Burpees

Dumbbell burpees are performed the same as regular burpees but you add a set of dumbbells to increase the difficulty and increase the muscle growth. To execute the exercise you will start in a standing position while holding a set of light dumbbells.

  • In a consecutive fluid movement and dumbbells in hand drop your hands to the ground in front of your feet and then jump your feet up and kick them back so you are in a plank position with your hands under your shoulders.
  • Then perform a push-up by bending at the elbow to lower your chest to the ground.
  • Press back up so your arms are straight and then jump your feet back to the start position.
  • Explosively return to a standing position, curling the dumbbells up to your shoulder and pressing them overhead.
  • Lower the dumbbells to your sides and immediately begin the next repetition.

The Workout

There are two different ways I like to do this workout, the first method, and the typical way I do it is in exercise pairs as laid out below.

  1. Complete a set of 10-12 repetitions of Renegade Rows.
  2. Rest 30-60 seconds
  3. Complete a set of 10-12 repetitions of Thrusters.
  4. Repeat this pair of exercises in this fashion 2 more times.
  5. Rest 3-5 minutes
  6. Complete a set of 10-12 repetitions of Dumbbell Reverse Lunge Curls
  7. Rest 30-60 seconds
  8. Complete a set of 10-12 repetitions of Dumbbell Burpees
  9. Repeat this pair of exercises in this fashion 2 more times.

The second method is to complete all sets of one exercise before moving on to the next exercise of the full body dumbbell workout.

  1. Complete 3 sets of 10-12 repetitions of Renegade Rows.
  2. Rest 1-3 minutes
  3. Complete 3 sets of 10-12 repetitions of Thrusters.
  4. Rest 1-3 minutes
  5. Complete 3 sets of 10-12 repetitions of Dumbbell Reverse Lunge Curls
  6. Rest 1-3 minutes
  7. Complete 3 sets of 10-12 repetitions of Dumbbell Burpee

Like any workout you can change the sets and repetitions to increase the intensity to suite your fitness level, or change up the order you do them in. You could even run through the four exercises once and then start over from the top. The main goal of this full body dumbbell workout is to hit as many muscle groups as possible in the shortest amount of time.

Always remember to keep the intensity up and leave it all in the gym, you don’t want to finish your workout and wonder if you could have gone harder!

Are you going to try this workout? If you have a little more time but only have dumbbells in your home gym check out my Barbell Substitutes Series.

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