No, Really. I Only Have 7 Minutes to Get Fit
I’m someone who fears being at rest, so let’s just say I went into motherhood believing it’d be no big deal. Sure, sure. Friends tried to warn me but I kept thinking, I don’t need much sleep! I like being active!
I look back now and laugh at my hubris. Oh, adorable babies of the world! How you bring life to a screeching halt.
Today I have a 15-month-old, a rigid daycare drop-off/pick-up schedule I share with my husband, and a million other tasks that need to get done if the whole ship is going to stay afloat. And it’s all about prioritization. Anything that doesn’t absolutely need to be done today must wait. The good days are when I have 30 minutes to watch a TV show before dropping into bed, worn out. (All you parents of two or more children are no doubt chuckling to yourselves right now. You have my undying respect!)
Let’s just say I haven’t seen the inside of a gym in 15 months. Truly I had all but given up getting back to my pre-pregnancy self when I got my hands on a copy of 7 Minutes to Fit by Brett Klika. It won me over with the title. Okay, yes. I have 7 minutes. No more! But I can devote 7 minutes a day to this.
But would it work? Skeptical, I read “The Scientific 7-Minute Workout” about the phenomenon. The New York Times article went viral when it was published, and it takes its information from an article by Brett Klika and Chris Jordan in the American College of Sports Medicine’s Health and Fitness Journal. In a nutshell, Klika and Jordan’s study proved that high-intensity interval training is a far more efficient way to work out than, say, a taking a long run in your neighborhood. Great news for the time-strapped person.
After co-authoring the journal piece, Brett Klika went on to write 7 Minutes to Fit. The book includes 50 different 7-minute workouts. Each workout has 10 exercises in them. You do each exercise for 30 seconds and then pause for 10 seconds. Sounds easy, right? Let’s just say the first few nights left me gasping for air. But now, they’re getting easier and last night I found myself wondering if I should do a second 7-minute workout. (So far I have only ever done 7 minutes.)
Even better, the exercises can be done anywhere. All you need is a little space, a chair, and a basic timer. And when I say a little space, I mean it. Our San Francisco apartment is so small that my husband and I must take turns doing our 7 minutes. Our living room is about the size of a closet.
But the real question you’re wondering is: Is the program working? Definitely. To say nothing of the proof on the scale, the other night my father said to me “Hey, look at those arms! What workout are you doing these days?” I gave him my full pitch on 7 Minutes to Fit.
In my opinion, the book works for two reasons: 1) the science-based workouts and 2) it’s really hard to talk yourself out of something that only takes 7 minutes. Every night I think, Oh, maybe I’ll skip it just this once and then another, stronger voice in my head says, What? It’s just 7 minutes! You can squeeze that in.
If you’re short on time, if you hate going to the gym, if you get bored easily, if you love brownies and brioche, if you’re ready to look and feel better…you can do this! Give it a try and let me know what you think.
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