I am not a fitness instructor by any means.
But I am a very passionate and regular exerciser and I have tried all of the things. Yoga, Pilates, CrossFit, HIIT, running, swimming, strength-based gym workouts, at-home ab workouts. And I've taken them all for a spin more than a couple of times.
Ever since fitness and I imprinted on each other five years ago, I have exercised five days a week every single week. Unless I am sick, or on holidays consuming copious amounts of wine and cheese, of course.
One of my key tricks to staying motivated is having a plethora of free, ready-to-go workouts that I know will get me sweaty and riding happily on those endorphins in the quickest, most efficient way possible.
Watch: Does your exercise horoscope match? Post continues after video.
Sometimes I have the energy and desire for an hour-long exhausting workout.
But a lot of the time, with work and friends and a *cough* Netflix series a-calling, I just don't want to be spending hours trekking to the gym and back.
That's where the following comes in.
Here are my seven go-to workouts for when I am after something quick and sweaty - all of which I do from the comfort of my loungeroom or backyard.
1. The Body Coach - Ladder HIIT workout.
I have been doing Joe Wicks workouts for years and they really get the job done.
He has hundreds of 15, 20, 30-minute workouts uploaded on his YouTube account, and he's constantly adding new ones.
This one is one of my absolute favourites. IT BURNS... but it's also done and dusted before you know it.
If that feels a bit too advanced for you, Joe has plenty of lower-intensity versions to get you started. I'd give this one a go first.
2. Go-Chlo Pilates - High Intensity + Full Body.
I fell in love with Chloe in 2020. I've dabbled in my fair share of Pilates workouts over the years, but hers feel different - in the best way possible.
She's just launched a Go-Chlo On Demand platform that gives you access to five new uploads every week, however, she also has a few taster classes that you can access for free on her YouTube channel.
I recommend starting with her 15 minute High Intensity workout and then moving straight into the 30-minute Full Body class. But if I CBF, or don't have time, I just drop one or the other.
3. Natacha Océane - Home HIIT.
I live in an apartment, so if I'm wanting a sweaty workout, but I don't want to leave the comfy confines of my house, Natacha is my gal.
She does HIIT sessions that are no noise, aka, no jumping.
This is one I come back to time and time again.
4. Caroline Girvan - Arm & Shoulder workout.
Okay, at the start of this workout Caroline lets us know she's going to be using 8kg dumbbells.
Holy s**t no Caroline, are you crazy? For reference, I use 4kg or 5kg if I am lucky, and that's super heavy for me. Don't compare yourself to these machine humans - make the workout work for you. If you don't have dumbbells, use wine bottles, or cans of chickpeas...whatever you've got around you.
I do try to go as heavy as I can manage for a workout like this, given it's only a short one.
5. Kayla Itsines - Full Body workout.
Kayla is who I started working out with when I first started properly getting into exercise. Back then she had a BBG (“Bikini Body Guide”) PDF that you downloaded. Nowadays she has an app called SWEAT, but you can find some of her real-time workouts for free on YouTube.
Five years later, I still lean on her workouts when I am in need of something quick and effective.
Here's a taster.
6. Keep It Cleaner - Pilates.
The Keep It Cleaner girls, Laura Henshaw and Steph Claire Smith, are fast becoming a go-to for Millennial and Gen Z women, and it's easy to see why.
They're fun, approachable and their workouts are banging. You can sign up for their KIC app of course, but they also have a few free workouts on their YouTube.
If I am in the mood for a purely lay-down Pilates session this is one I reach for often.
7. POPSUGAR Fitness - HIIT workout.
Okay, full disclosure, some of the instructors on this channel are very full on. But don't let it turn you off. The workouts are great.
I love the punching in this one - a great stress reliever after a hectic day.
It's...very hurty. But in a good way.
Feature image: Gemma Bath