Q: What is the least amount of time I can work out each week and still get results?
A: When the goal is increasing lean muscle mass and decreasing body fat, I'm a big advocate of three non-consecutive days of total-body resistance training per week. For most people, anything less than three days per week just isn't enough training stimulus to get results.
As for the workouts themselves, I like to structure routines so that the bulk of the exercises, especially early on in the training session, are compound movements (multi-joint exercises) such as deadlifts, squats, chinups, pushups, inverted rows, and kettlebell swings, using a moderate to heavy load. As you develop more strength, I suggest adding in some conditioning exercises (I like to do sled dragging or battling ropes with my clients), as well as shortening the rest periods between exercises. This forces you to do more work in less time—the key to an effective fat-burning workout.
Personal trainer and strength coach Joe Dowdell has helped transform a clientele that includes stars of television and film, musicians, pro athletes, CEO's, and top fashion models. To learn more, check out JoeDowdell.com. You can also find him on Facebook and Twitter @joedowdellnyc.