A while back, I was helping my hubby come up with a simple exercise plan for himself to do before work that didn’t require a lot of space or equipment. I remembered reading about how the Minimalists stripped back to a simple exercise routine in their book Everything that Remains after ditching going to the gym to save on money and time. And then I found a blog with more details on it here. My husband was easily able to make his own too!

Using HIIT routines: what are they?

Recently my friend Terri shared that she uses HIIT routines for her workouts, so I thought to look into that further.

According to Fitnessblender.com,

High intensity interval training or HIIT is defined as short, intense, unsustainable bursts of physical activity, paired with intervals of quick rests. This type of intense training causes a sort of metabolic disturbance which can result in the body burning calories at a higher rate up to 48-72 hours later. HIIT can also increase metabolism, reduce insulin resistance, improve cardiac function, produce faster gains in endurance levels than steady state cardio training and can be an effective way to recruit/build type 2 fast twitch muscle.”

And I found out there were tons of ways to do HIIT routines and exercises, so I sat down and wrote up a simple plan for myself taking from various ideas out there that I found. Today on the blog I’m going to share with you how to design a simple exercise routine whether you have 5 or 30 minutes and beyond. It’s what I’m currently doing for my daily exercise too and thought it may help you out.

My current simple exercise routine

  1. Pick two cardio exercises such as burpees or jumping jacks.
  2. Pick one lower exercise such as squats or lunges.
  3. Pick one upper exercise such as push ups or bench dips.
  4. Pick one core exercise such as planks or mountain climbers.


  • Repeat the above routine X amount of times that you want (I’m currently doing 10 and 15 minutes..hoping to work that up). Each time through is 5 minutes.
  • Each individual exercise is 50 seconds, followed by ten seconds of rest.
  • Find a HIIT timer that does 50 seconds, 10 seconds. You can find an app or a YouTube video that can do this. I use this one here for when I do 15 minutes.

And that’s it!

If you’d like a simple worksheet to fill in your own simple exercise routine and with a few more exercise suggestions for each category, I can send you my personal setup too. Although they are all exercises that I know well and enjoy. Feel free to send me an email at simplehomemom@gmail.com if you’d like that worksheet for free.

Hi, I’m Kelly! I’m a mother of four children - three boys, one toddler girl - and our family lives on the beautiful east coast of Canada. I’m a past elementary teacher, turned stay at home, work at home mom eight years ago after I had my second child. I’ve found that the busier I’ve become and as my children age, that it’s become even more important to figure out what is most important to me and us as a family. Living a simpler lifestyle has helped us in so many ways in our home life - from better routines to faster tidying up times. It has been through my children that I have been inspired to learn how to effectively manage my time and to simplify in all areas of my home and life. I enjoy helping busy moms simplify home life by teaching flexible planning methods and skills. Enjoyed this blog and think it would be helpful to others? I'd love if you shared it. Thank you!