Sometimes going to the gym just isn’t an option. Whether you’re being mindful of germs or are just existentially exhausted by the idea of another drive or train ride to the gym, it’s all too easy to blow off your workout in favor of heading home.
Then there’s the fact that trying out a new workout class can be more than a little intimidating. Who wants to work their way through all that choreography in front of a crowd?
Luckily, we have a compromise for you: You can fit in a sweat session at home right in front of your TV. And it’s free! All you need is a little bit of space — not even any props. These are the seven best 30-minute workout videos on YouTube.
You can literally break a sweat like a celeb with this cardio workout video collab with The Vampire Diaries star Nina Dobrev, Reebok and the Les Mills creative team. Dobrev supplied her favorite tunes to exercise to and her go-to moves, and the fitness experts created a high-intensity interval training (HIIT) workout that’s designed specifically to help you burn as many calories as you can in half an hour, plus boost your speed and cardiovascular fitness. The workout moves so quickly that you’ll be too busy trying to keep up (in a good way — we promise!) to watch the clock.
Personal trainer Jessica Smith has created plenty of home exercise DVDs and is the host of Jessica Smith TV on YouTube, so she’s proven she knows how to work a workout video. If you’re looking to get longer and leaner, Pilates is the regime for you, and this one delivers a full-body workout that can be done anywhere.
Who doesn’t want a better booty and tighter abs? This easy-to-follow video by Katie Dunlop, Creator of Love Sweat Fitness, will help you get there — and without a single crunch or squat! If ab work isn’t what you’re in the mood for, the Popsugar fitness channel, Class FitSugar, boasts an impressive array of workouts and tutorials, ranging from beginner to advanced, often taught by the most in-demand celeb trainers. And whether you prefer Bar Method, P90X, or Tabata, there’s something for everyone to get their blood pumping.
Adriene Mishler of Yoga With Adriene is exactly what you’d expect from an incredibly popular (she has more than 4 million subscribers!) yoga instructor: Her voice is super soothing and her videos instantly calm you down as you follow along. Plus, her adorable dog often makes a guest appearance in her videos. This Yoga For The Future video features a strong and mindful flow to ground and center you, with poses that even newbies to the mat can master. Mishler’s YouTube channel has yoga workouts for practically everything you can think of, from taking a stretch break at work to calorie scorchers to shed weight to anxiety erasers and even curing a hangover.
Even if you have two left feet, you can still bust a few moves while burning major calories with this easy dance workout, hosted by CBC Life instructor Chloe Bent. If you want a lower impact workout, you can follow one of the three women in the video, who has taken the steps down a notch. The clever routines sneak in moves like squats into dancing, so you won’t even notice you’re doing the dreaded exercise, but you’ll still reap the rewards. It also boasts an impressive variety of dance styles, from salsa to hip hop. And when in doubt about copying the choreography, just keep moving — you’ll still be burning calories.
Blogilates, helmed by award-winning fitness instructor Cassey Ho, is one of the most popular fitness channels on YouTube — and from watching any of her workouts, it’s easy to see why. She offers plenty of quick tutorials, like “20 Minute Arm Isolate Workout“ and “20 Minute Waist Shaping Workout.” But it’s this full-length upload of her popular POP Pilates DVD that deserves a spot on repeat. Absolutely no equipment is needed to work and tone your abs, butt and thighs. Plus, the beachy backdrop will give you major vacation vibes to keep you motivated.
If you’re no stranger to serious sweat sessions and mean business about getting in shape, tune into this lightning-paced HIIT workout. It’ll get your blood pumping in no time with its mix of on-your-toes moves that never require any equipment — just your own body weight. There are only super short breaks for recovery, so you practically won’t stop moving for the entire half hour, keeping your heart rate up.
A version of this story was published April 2019.
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