Busy Lifestyles and Weight Loss Goals are Fueling the Demand for Shorter Workouts.  Amidst the Bustling Fitness Scene in London’s Canary Wharf, We Found Three Fantastic Solutions.

If weight loss is one of your goals, you’ve likely asked this question before: How much of a difference will it really make if I only have time for a quick 10-minute workout or jog?? More than you know, say personal trainers.

Sitting on the eastern edge of London, Canary Wharf has long played host to financial giants like Barclays and Citigroup. However, the fitness industry has gained a tremendous foothold in this thriving city, and a recent visit to the area revealed just how much our post-pandemic society is prioritizing fitness, weight loss, and healthier living.

We spoke with a few of Canary Wharf’s personal trainers and fitness professionals to understand how modern fitness is changing to accommodate society’s busier schedules. Here’s what we learned.

A Cult of Busyness

Ours is a cult of busyness. We wear it like a badge of honor and research shows that our level of busyness is tightly bound to our feelings of self-worth. It’s gotten so bad that a lack of leisure time is now viewed as a direct indicator of our social status.

Frankly, it’s not something that’s expected to change anytime soon.

But the biggest mistake personal trainers say we’re making is adopting the belief that, if we can’t dedicate 30 minutes to run a few miles or lift weights, then there’s just no point in trying.

That’s just not true. Getting in even 10 minutes of exercise can be much more effective than you might think. The challenge, personal trainers say, has become how we can maximize the value of every precious minute that we’re able to dedicate toward achieving our weight loss goals through exercise.

Here are three effective weight loss routines that personal trainers recommend for when you only have 10- or 15 minutes to dedicate to exercise and want to get the most out of every minute:

High-intensity Interval Training (HIIT)

The High-Intensity Interval Training workout, or HIIT for short, was easily seen as being the best time-sensitive weight loss routine by the personal trainers we spoke with in Canary Wharf. Essentially a combination of intensive bursts of physical activity followed by short periods of rest just long enough to catch our breath. HIIT routines have become wildly popular for people who love a heart-pounding sweaty workout but often struggle to find enough time.

When it comes to the weight loss game, HIIT workouts aren’t necessarily "better" than other workouts, but they’re unrivaled in terms of “workout efficiency.” In other words, HIIT routines allow you to make significant strides in achieving your weight loss goals in a minimal amount of time.

HIIT workouts often include exercises like burpees, jump squats, push-ups, and other heart-pumping activities. While it’s always best to consult a fitness professional or personal trainer when adopting a new workout routine, you’ll find an array of 10- to 15-minute HIIT workout videos online that you can explore to see which works best for you.

The most significant weight loss advantage offered by HIIT workouts is their ability to elevate your heart rate to such a level that it ignites what’s referred to as the EPOC effect or post-exercise oxygen consumption. The EPOC effect is a natural post-workout dynamic that causes your body to burn calories at a higher rate, even after you finish your routine. One other HIIT factoid that our fitness friends in Canary Wharf applauded was the workout’s ability to target and eliminate abdominal fat!

Bodyweight Training

Got 10 minutes and a few feet of space in your home or office? Personal trainers say that’s all you need to get in a full-body, fat-burning workout.

By applying the weight of our own body as a means of resistance, bodyweight workouts are a fantastic and increasingly popular way to strengthen and tone the lean muscle mass in our bodies. It’s a simple dynamic of muscle tissue burning more calories than fat tissue, even while we’re at rest.

The truth is that strength training has become very popular as a weight loss strategy. Studies show that we can achieve the same weight loss results as we might if we were to do cardio or aerobic routines for fat loss instead.

Most bodyweight exercises like squats or pushups don’t require any equipment, and personal trainers say that’s what makes them so efficient for workouts that need to be completed in 10- or 15 minutes.

Here’s an example of a beginner’s bodyweight routine you can complete in no time:

Squats: 8 – 10 Reps. 3 Sets

Lunge: 8 – 10 Reps. 3 Sets

Push Ups: 8 – 10 Reps. 3 Sets

Planks: Hold for 20 – 60 Seconds. 3 Sets

Lying Leg Raise: 10 – 15 Reps. 3 Sets.

Yoga for Weight Loss? Absolutely

Personal trainers are often asked, “Can I achieve noticeable weight loss results just by practicing yoga?” And while yoga might not be the first thing that comes to mind when fat loss is a priority, the answer is yes.

At least 20 studies show that yoga can be an effective weight loss strategy, even when you’ve only got 10- or 15 minutes to dedicate to the practice.

The practice of yoga is evolving as it continues to gain popularity, and some forms are more strenuous than others. These yoga types can effectively elevate one’s heart rate more than others and, hence, are better forms of yoga if fat loss is your goal.

The best yoga routines recommended for fat loss include:

Yoga combined with Weights: a type of yoga that incorporates lighter dumbbells weighing 3 to 5 lbs.

Power Yoga: Distinct in its rapid movements and the maintaining of certain poses for up to five full breaths, power yoga is an accelerated version focused on the transition or movement between poses instead of putting all your effort into holding the poses.

Vinyasa Yoga: Widely considered the best type of yoga for weight loss. This yoga practice focuses intensively on the breath. And, the transitions between poses are performed at a rapid rate of speed. It’s a practice that increases the heart rate, which accelerates the burning of unwanted fat.

Nutrition | Protein is a Must!

Now that London’s fitness professionals have enlightened us with these time-sensitive workout options, let’s avoid undermining our efforts by making bad dietary choices!

For example, did you know that Englanders are getting more than half of their average calorie intake from ultra-processed foods? That’s a huge liability for anyone with a weight loss goal.

Fortunately, society has renewed its focus on nutrition and healthier living. And that’s reframing the conversation around protein and its pivotal role in weight loss success.

Protein is undoubtedly the most important macronutrient for weight loss results. A diet rich in protein sources serves to boost our metabolism by building lean fat-burning muscle tissue and it can also reduce sugar cravings as well as our general appetite.

One fitness professional working out of a prominent fitness spa in Canary Wharf offered us a great explanation on the importance of protein: “Take bodyweight training as an example. It’s a quick workout that puts our major muscle groups under tension. That tension creates micro-tears in our muscle fibers. Our bodies use amino acids from the protein sources we eat to repair and create more lean muscle tissue. The result is a stronger, trimmer figure.

Since our bodies are constantly churning through amino acids to build muscle tissue, make sure your diet consists of rich sources of protein like yogurt, nuts, and lean meat products.


Whether we go to the coastal city of Fisherman’s Wharf in America or Canary Wharf in London, people everywhere seem to struggle to find enough time for fitness.

Here’s the key: many of us want to maximize the amount of productivity we get from our bodies. If we can consistently get in those 10 minutes of exercise to burn off the extra weight, we’ll feel healthier. When you feel healthier, you feel more productive, and productive people often enjoy a great sense of fulfillment and accomplishment. Make the effort.

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