Gym classes: fast workouts

Turn up the RPM for slender legs in 30 minutes

Best for: Ennis-esque abs

With a tunnel-vision focus on your core, 30-minute CXWORX classes include both mat and standing moves that blast your abs from every angle. You’ll hit the deck for bicycle crunches and leg extensions, then leap up for squats and lunges, then get back down on the mat for ‘the hover’ – AKA a plank. And that’s just in the first five minutes. Bikini body, here you come! CXWORX, 30 minutes,

CXWORX: tried and tested

Best for: weight loss

Not for the faint-hearted, the new Les Mills GRIT class uses high-intensity interval training to create a flab-blasting, 30-minute session where the main goal is to get your heart rate up and into the fat-burning zone. There are burpees, clean and presses, and side planks galore. Because the intervals boost your calorie-burn both during class and for a few hours after, you’re practically guaranteed to drop a few pounds.
GRIT, 30 minutes,

Threshold interval training for faster running

Best for: defined muscles

Body Pump classes have a simple formula gym bunnies have been relying on for years to slim down: You + barbell = calorie-blasting total body workout. So it’s lucky the only difference between that and the new Body Pump Express class is the duration. Expect to work every muscle in your body, with more time to spare for showing it off. Body Pump, 45 minutes,

The best fitness DVDs

Best for: a running PB

Make your time on the treadmill work harder with G-Cardio, a 30-minute group class that teaches you how to get the most out of a running machine. With speed, incline and interval drills, it’s much more exciting – and a far better workout – than mindlessly jogging on the treadmill on your own for half an hour. G-Cardio, 30 minutes,

Improve your running with Fartlek training

Best for: fat burning

Only have 15 minutes to spare? Check out Tabata Protocol, a compact group workout that uses the power of high-intensity interval training to create a total body challenge to rival many hour-long classes. You’ll do drills such as high-knee running or side planks for 20 seconds, rest for 10 seconds, and move right into the next 20-second drill. It’s intense, but over with quickly. Phew. Tabata Protocol, 15 minutes,

What is Tabata?

Best for: slender legs

Few classes offer a cardio and lower body challenge on par with a spin session, but sometimes there’s just not enough time in the day to commit to a full hour on the bike. Say hello to RPM Express, a 30-minute spin class that gets your heart rate up and works your bum, legs and abs in half the time. You’ll still get a great workout by tackling hills, valleys and doing time trials. RPM Express, 30 minutes,

Get a better spinning workout

Best for: total body toning

Gravity Fast classes take place on an angled glideboard that you sit, kneel or stand on. The board is connected to handles by pulley and you’ll use them for moves such as chest presses, bicep curls and lunges. When you pull, the glideboard moves up and down  so you’re using your entire body weight as resistance. The classes are only 20 minutes long, which is handy, because that’s about as much as our muscles could take. Gravity Fast, 20 minutes,

Tone up in two weeks

Best for: improving strength

Ugi classes use a specially-made weight (called an Ugi) that’s a cross between a medicine ball and a bean bag during 30 one-minute-long drills. Think walking lunges holding the weighted ball, or crunches while the ball rests on your legs. The aim is to tone your body for real-world activities such as carrying heavy bags, so it’s great if you have weak areas that need strengthening. Ugi, 30 minutes,

What is Ugi?