My challenge is finding time . . . time to work out. You may have similar challenges as life just seems to get in the way.
High-Intensity-Interval-Training (HIIT) solves this problem.
This is the type of training where you work hard going “all out” with short breaks between circuits of exercise.
Several studies show that you get an effective workout in 1/2 the time of typical endurance exercises.
You get improvement in aerobic fitness, strength, weight loss and improvement in diabetes markers such as insulin sensitivity. These benefits occur despite only short bursts of exercise limited to under 20 minutes 3 times per week.
One app I have found useful to implement HIIT is the 7 minute workout challenge (7 MWC) from Xperts Production.
This is a group of physicians and fitness experts who have designed an app for the iPhone, iPad and Android devices.
The app packs 12 body weight exercises into a 7-minute circuit.
What I like about the app is that you simply hit a button and get to business.
The app moves you through the circuit and signals you when to start and stop. Videos demonstrate the exercises for you.
The beauty of the program is that it utilizes body resistance exercises, so it can be completed anywhere.
I use it when traveling or at home when cramped for time. We spent a weekend at the cabin recently and busted out the app for a mid-day workout after too many hours reading in peace.
It has a nifty calendar that tracks your progress, which is a nice tool that could help you ingrain the exercise habit into your mind.
The app can also track your weight.
The workout program is easily customizable. So, you can change up the workout by switching the exercise duration and rest.
The program has a levels of achievement, which gamifies the workout.
The original price is $2.99 and several workout bonus packs are available. I have not purchased any of these, but will consider it if I get bored with the program and need to move on to something else.
In summary, I find the 7-MWC app to be useful.
Mostly, it is kept on my iPhone and I break it out traveling, but will occasionally use it at home when time is short.
I think you could use this app for a routine workout to get the benefits of high-intensity interval training.
However, because it is a body-resistance training program, you would not want to go more than 3-4 times per week to allow muscles to heal. I would alternate with an aerobic program.