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This Micro Workout Challenge Is Your Solution to No Time For the Gym

Shorter, more frequent workouts can grow stronger muscles while fitting seamlessly into even the busiest of schedules.

A study carried out by the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research showed that even brief sessions of exercise if carried out with consistency, can be effective for strength gains (5).

The participants were resistance-trained men, indicating that those with a history of weight training might reap the most immediate benefits from micro workouts.

However, the same principles of high-intensity, short-duration exercise could potentially benefit beginners as well, by laying down the foundations of strength and endurance without overwhelming them.

Although more research is needed to fully understand how these condensed sessions compare to more traditional, longer workouts, this fitness trend is too promising to ignore.

Here’s everything you need to know about the micro workout challenge, an innovative approach to fitness that dispels the myth that there isn’t enough time to exercise effectively.

What Is a Micro Workout Challenge?

A micro workout challenge is a routine that involves performing multiple short, high-intensity exercises throughout the day. The goal is to spread your workout into smaller chunks of time, rather than trying to fit in one long session at the gym.

These micro workouts can be done anywhere, with or without equipment. There are no rules really; except that your workout should last no longer than 10 minutes at a time.

Just 10 minutes of exercise, several times a day can do wonders for your fitness levels. By breaking up your workout into smaller segments, you increase the chances of actually completing it and staying consistent.

What Is The Power of Micro Workouts?

The power of micro workouts is that they overcome multiple barriers to exercise; time, motivation and accessibility.

For most people, finding the time to go to the gym or dedicating an hour for a workout can be challenging with work, family commitments, and other responsibilities.

The thought of having to do an intense workout for an hour can also be daunting and demotivating, leading many to simply give up altogether.

Micro workouts provide a solution by allowing individuals to fit in short bursts of exercise whenever it is convenient for them.

These eliminate the need for a specific time or place and can be done in the comfort of your own home, office, or even on the go. This accessibility makes it easier for people to stay consistent with their workouts, leading to better results over time.

Additionally, micro workouts can be highly effective, due to their high-intensity nature. By performing short bursts of exercises with maximum effort, you can increase your heart rate and build muscle more efficiently just like with slower, longer workouts, when total volume is matched (1). 

In addition, the versatility of micro workouts means that they can be tailored to individual fitness levels and goals. They are a great way for beginners to ease into working out and for experienced athletes to supplement their regular training routine.

If you tend to let yourself off the hook, raise the white flag when things get tougher than you expected, send yourself on an unconscious binge-eating trip – BetterMe app is here to help you leave all of these sabotaging habits in the past!

Are Micro Workouts Effective?

Micro workouts are effective for multiple purposes; cardio, strength training, flexibility, and even stress relief.

Cardiovascular Benefits

Short bursts of high-intensity exercises can significantly improve cardiovascular health by increasing your heart rate and oxygen consumption (4).

The American Heart Association recommends at least 150 minutes of moderate exercise or 75 minutes of vigorous exercise per week (2). With micro workouts, you can easily achieve this by breaking it down into smaller, more manageable chunks.

Hopping on a micro workouts challenge for weight loss will mean incorporating cardio exercises into your routine.

Muscle Building

While many believe that long, intense workouts are necessary for building muscle, micro workouts have shown to be just as effective. By targeting specific muscle groups with short bursts of repetitive exercises, you can achieve significant strength gains over time.

A micro workout challenge for beginners may involve bodyweight exercises, such as squats, push-ups, and lunges, while a challenge for experienced athletes may include equipment, like resistance bands or weights.

Flexibility and Mobility

Micro workouts can also help improve flexibility and mobility by incorporating stretching and mobility exercises into your short routines. This is especially beneficial for those with sedentary jobs or lifestyles, as it can help counteract the negative effects of prolonged sitting and lack of movement (9).

Stress Relief

The high-intensity nature of micro workouts can also provide stress relief by releasing endorphins and reducing tension in the body (3). Taking short breaks throughout the day to perform a quick workout can help improve mood and productivity, making it a valuable tool for busy individuals.


How to Start A Micro Workout Challenge

Start the micro workout challenge by first identifying your fitness goals and choosing exercises that align with them.

You can find many micro workout routines online or create your own by selecting a variety of exercises that target different muscle groups.

Here’s a simple 10-minute micro workout routine to get you started:

  • Jumping Jacks (45 seconds)
  • Push-Ups (45 seconds)
  • Mountain Climbers (45 seconds)
  • Squats (45 seconds)
  • Plank Hold (45 seconds)
  • Lunges (45 seconds

Repeat this circuit twice, with 30 seconds rest in between each circuit. This routine focuses on a full-body workout and can be modified to suit your fitness level by adjusting the duration or intensity of each exercise.

Here’s another micro workout routine, this one targeting the core:

  • Bicycle Crunches (30 seconds)
  • Russian Twists (30 seconds)
  • Superman (30 seconds)
  • Side Planks (20-30 seconds on each side)

Repeat this circuit twice, with 30 seconds rest in between each circuit.

These tips can help you stay motivated and consistent with your micro workout challenge:

  • Set specific goals for each week, such as completing a certain number of workouts or increasing the intensity.
  • Focus on your form and technique to prevent injury and maximize results.
  • Ease into it and gradually increase the intensity and duration of your workouts over time.
  • Find an accountability partner or join a community of others participating in the challenge for support and motivation.
  • Fit micro workouts throughout the day by using breaks at work, doing exercises while watching TV, or even doing household chores.

Read more: Micro Tears In Muscles After Workout: Why Your Body Aches and What To Do About It

Is Any Exercise Better Than None?

Any exercise is better than no exercise because a sedentary lifestyle can lead to various health issues, including obesity, heart disease, and diabetes (7). 

According to the World Health Organization, physical inactivity is the fourth leading risk factor for global mortality (6).

Even if you are unable to commit to a regular exercise routine, incorporating micro workouts throughout the day can make a significant difference in your overall health and well-being.

Is It Ok To Do Small Workouts Everyday?

It’s ok to do small workouts every day, as long as you listen to your body and give yourself enough rest.

Micro workouts can be done daily, but it’s important to have a balance between high-intensity exercises and active recovery days.

For example, you can do a bodyweight micro workout challenge for 5 days, followed by 2 days of active recovery activities, such as walking or yoga. This will allow your body to recover and prevent overtraining.

Be sure to switch up the exercises you’re doing each day to prevent overuse injuries and target different muscle groups.

You don’t have to do micro workouts every hour for them to be effective. As little as 10 minutes of exercise, three times a day can make a significant impact on your health and fitness levels.

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  • Do 10 Minute Workouts Really Work?

10-minute workouts, when done consistently and with proper intensity, can be just as effective as longer workouts. However, it’s important to have a well-rounded fitness routine that also includes strength training and flexibility work.

  • Will 10 Minutes of Exercise a Day Help Lose Weight?

10 minutes of exercise a day can contribute to weight loss (8), especially when combined with a healthy diet and other physical activity throughout the day. On its own; however, it may not be enough to see significant weight loss results.

The Bottom Line

The micro workout challenge is an innovative approach to fitness that allows individuals to stay consistent and achieve their health goals, even with a busy schedule. Its effectiveness in improving cardiovascular health, building muscle, increasing flexibility and mobility, and reducing stress makes it a valuable addition to any fitness routine.


This article is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional advice or help and should not be relied on to make decisions of any kind. Any action you take upon the information presented in this article is strictly at your own risk and responsibility!


  1. Adaptations to Short, Frequent Sessions of Endurance and Strength Training Are Similar to Longer, Less Frequent Exercise Sessions When the Total Volume Is the Same (2015, pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov)
  2. American Heart Association Recommendations for Physical Activity in Adults and Kids (2024, heart.org)
  3. Exercise and stress: Get moving to manage stress (2022, mayoclinic.org)
  4. High-intensity interval training for health benefits and care of cardiac diseases – The key to an efficient exercise protocol (2019, ncbi.nlm.nih.gov)
  5. High Resistance-Training Frequency Enhances Muscle Thickness in Resistance-Trained Men (2019, pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov)
  6. Physical inactivity (n.d.,.who.int)
  7. Sedentary Lifestyle: Overview of Updated Evidence of Potential Health Risks (2020, ncbi.nlm.nih.gov)
  8. Super-short Exercise Bouts (at the Right Intensity) Offer Big Weight-loss Benefits (n.d., acefitness.org)
  9. Targeting Reductions in Sitting Time to Increase Physical Activity and Improve Health (2018, ncbi.nlm.nih.gov)
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