This 20-minute workout can boost your metabolism in just 7 moves

Woman performing side plank during bodyweight workout at home
(Image credit: Getty images/ Undrey)

20 minutes and this bodyweight workout is all it takes to boost your metabolism and burn calories. You don’t need any equipment to get it done either, just one of the best yoga mats to support your limbs and these seven bodyweight exercises. 

A functional full bodyweight workout at home can help build muscle all over, improve strength, and torch calories. This short HIIT workout uses seven beginner-friendly moves and is designed by Jeanette Jenkins (opens in new tab), owner of the Hollywood Trainer Club (opens in new tab).

Although Jenkins performs this workout poolside in perfect synchro with her buddy, you can get this workout done anywhere, solo or otherwise. Perform each exercise for 30-60 seconds as a circuit and repeat for three sets. These bodyweight exercises are challenging alone, but you could pair them with the best adjustable dumbbells to help build strength all over and work your muscles even harder. 

For tips on form and what each exercise looks like, watch Jenkins's video below before you get started. 

Jeanette Jenkins’ 20-minute bodyweight workout  

A post shared by Jeanette Jenkins (@msjeanettejenkins) (opens in new tab)

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You might have heard the term “calisthenics” bandied around, but while it might sound like advanced gym terminology, it simply means functional bodyweight strength training. Any calisthenics at-home workout worth its salt will utilize basic compound exercises, which are moves designed to work multiple muscle groups in one go.  

  • Squat Jacks ⁣
  • Side lunge + 3 Knees⁣
  • Push-up + Side Plank⁣
  • Plyo/ Jump Lunges⁣
  • 2 Jacks + Star Jack (Power Jack)⁣
  • Squat Thrust/Stiff Arm Burpee⁣
  • Crab Walk Toe Touch⁣

The bodyweight workout combines the basics of calisthenics workouts — like squats and push-ups — with explosive jumping movements to develop power, ramp up your heart rate, burn calories, and build functional strength all over. You can expect squat jacks, side lunges to high knees, push-ups to side plank, jump lunges, jumping jacks, squat thrusts to stiff-arm burpees, and crab walk toe touches, which are all scalable for beginners. 

Exercises like squats, jump lunges, and side lunges will work your quads, glutes, hamstrings, and adductors (inner thigh muscles), while push-ups target your chest, shoulders, and triceps. The crab toe touches and side plank will test your core muscles and help develop shoulder strength. 

Two women performing a synchro lateral lunge

(Image credit: Getty/undrey)

It’s tempting to head straight for heavy weights to achieve your fitness goals, but beginners or advanced athletes who want to progress their weight training can benefit from bodyweight workouts. Moreover, research (opens in new tab) shows that resistance training can improve bone and joint health, helping to keep you injury-free and nimble as you exercise.

You’ll be spent afterward, but those wishing to activate beast mode could add some light dumbbells or a resistance band to some of these exercises, although be careful of your shoulders during the overhead movements. We reckon all you really need are some of the best wireless headphones to get you started and a spare 20, of course.

A calisthenics home workout is a perfect way to work off excess calories and reach a full-body blitz, so why not try this calisthenics workout to build full-body strength? I also swear by this dumbbell abs workout to sculpt your core, and you can train like Thor using Chris Hemsworth’s 200-rep bodyweight workout to test your endurance.

Sam Hopes
Staff Fitness Writer

Sam Hopes is a level III fitness trainer, level II reiki practitioner, and resident fitness writer at Future PLC, the publisher of Tom's Guide. Having trained to work with mind and body, Sam is a big advocate of using mindfulness techniques in sport and fitness, and their impact on performance. She’s also passionate about the fundamentals of training and building sustainable training methods.  When she's writing up her experiences with the latest fitness tech, you’ll find her writing about nutrition, sleep, recovery, and workouts.