A woman lies on an exercise mat while doing bicycle crunches as part of an EMOM workout. Share on Pinterest
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The goal of an EMOM workout is to complete a certain number of reps of a particular exercise within 60 seconds and to use whatever time is left in that minute to rest before moving on to the next set.

No matter where you are in your fitness journey, EMOM workouts can be your new best friend — from the training room to the comfort of your very own living room.

An EMOM workout, short for every minute on the minute, is a form of interval training. The challenge is to complete a predetermined number of repetitions (reps) of a particular exercise within 60 seconds. Then, you use whatever time is left in that minute to rest before moving on to the next set.

If you’re interested in learning more about EMOM workouts and the benefits of this type of exercise routine, we’ve got it covered. We also have some EMOM workout examples to get you started.

EMOM workouts are a type of high-intensity interval training (HIIT), where you alternate short bursts of intense exercise with low-intensity recovery periods.

With EMOM workouts, you have 1 minute to complete a specific number of reps of a particular exercise. The key to this type of workout is to finish your reps before the minute is over.

When you’ve completed your set of reps, you use the remainder of that minute to rest before you move on to your next set of reps. You repeat this cycle for the duration of your workout.

The slower you are at completing your reps, the less time you’ll have to rest.

Recovery time is very important, and it’s crucial not to skip it. Being able to rest gives your body a chance to recover and reset before you launch into the next exercise.

Quick and convenient

We all know how difficult it can be to fit a workout into a busy day. Luckily, you can create EMOM workouts that only take 10 to 30 minutes. Even more conveniently, they require little to no equipment and very little space.

What does this mean for you? You can either take an EMOM workout with you to the gym or you can squeeze one in between conference calls on your living room floor.

Burn fat and boost your metabolism

EMOM workouts are a form of interval training, which may be an effective way of reducing your body fat percentage, according to a 2018 review of studies. Based on this evidence, EMOM workouts may help you get leaner while also building your strength.

Additionally, a 2019 study suggests that interval training helps increase post-exercise oxygen consumption (EPOC). This means you may continue to burn calories at a higher rate even after you’ve finished working out.

A flexible format that allows for variety

You can customize the structure of an EMOM to target most muscle groups in your body. You can also add in new exercises and swap others out to align with your fitness goals and preferences.

For example, if you’re tired of bodyweight workouts, you can switch things up by adding in dumbbells or exercise bands. If you want to pivot from resistance training completely, you can even bring the EMOM structure with you on your run.

Overdoing it

Sometimes, especially when you’re starting out with a new fitness routine, it can be easy to jump into an overly ambitious workout plan. If you start off with an EMOM workout that’s too intense, you may risk getting injured. You may also find it too tiring and not enjoyable.

It’s best to start off slowly so you can gauge your level of fitness. As you get used to the routine and build up your strength, you can gradually make your workouts more difficult by tacking on more reps, weight, or minutes.

Not using rest time

The secret to EMOM workouts is to use your rest time to recover. Rest time is important because it helps lower your heart rate while your body recovers and gets ready for the next exercise.

If you don’t move between elevated and lowered heart rates throughout the duration of interval training, you may not reap as many benefits from the workout, including fat burning.

You only need a few basic items to get started with a successful EMOM workout.

  1. You’ll need a device to help you keep time. Try using a handheld stopwatch or a phone timer.
  2. Take a look at your workout plan to get an idea of how much space you need. Typically, giving yourself space that’s just a little more than the size of a workout mat should be sufficient.
  3. Grab any equipment you may want to use during your workout. Many exercises can be done just using your body weight. Optional add-ons can include resistance bands, dumbbells, barbells, ankle or wrist weights, or weighted vests.
  4. Make sure you have a bottle of water close at hand so you can stay hydrated between your exercise sets.

Beginner full-body workout: 12 minutes

This workout plan allows you to target many muscle groups with just your own body weight.

Try completing the following set of exercises each minute, and repeat the sequence 2 more times for a total of a 12-minute workout.

Minute 1: 10 pushups (do them on your knees if it’s easier at first)

Minute 2: 8–10 bodyweight squats

Minute 3: 15 bicycle crunches

Minute 4: 12 jumping jacks

Minutes 5–12: Repeat the sequence above.

Once you’ve completed each set, rest until you hit the top of the minute. Then, start the next set of exercise moves.

To make this sequence more difficult you can:

  • add more reps to each exercise
  • add more minutes to the workout (extend this sequence from 12 minutes to 16 or 20 minutes)
  • add dumbbells to your air squats or add ankle or wrist weights to your jumping jacks

Burpee endurance ladder: 15 minutes

Burpees are a great way to strengthen your legs, hips, buttocks, abdomen, arms, chest, and shoulders.

This EMOM workout is targeted at building your endurance over a 15-minute period.

How to do this routine:

  1. At the top of the first minute, you will do one burpee.
  2. When the second minute begins, you will do two burpees.
  3. With each new minute, you will add on one more burpee than the previous round, building up to 15 burpees by the time you get to the 15th minute.
  4. Since you will have a lot of spare time in the first couple of minutes, aim to supplement the remainder of your time (up to 45 seconds) with wall-sits or running in place.
  5. At the end of this workout, you will have done 120 burpees!

To make the burpee less challenging, you can skip either the pushup or the jump.

To make the burpee more challenging, you can jump up onto a box or bench instead of jumping into the air. Or, you can add dumbbells to the exercise.

  • Warmup and cool down. To lower your risk of injury, it’s important to get your body moving before starting a workout. Try to spend a few minutes engaging in light cardio or dynamic stretches. When your workout is over, take another few minutes to stretch as you cool down.
  • Take extra recovery time if you need it. If you feel winded or overly tired, it’s OK to pause your workout so you can grab a little extra recovery time or a drink of water.
  • Focus on your form. Using correct form will help you reap the most benefits from an exercise. It will also help protect you from injury. If you’re trying an exercise for the first time, consider working out near a mirror to make sure you’re using the right technique and form. If you aren’t sure what the right form is, consider working with a certified trainer at first.
  • Ease into heavier weights. If you decide to use weights with any exercises, begin with a weight that you feel confident using for the duration of the workout, even if it seems too light. You can always adjust as you go or use a heavier weight with your next workout.
  • Stop if you feel pain. If you feel sudden or unusual pain while doing an exercise, stop right away and check to make sure you’re using the correct form. If the pain persists or gets worse, follow up with your healthcare provider.

EMOM workouts are an acronym for every minute on the minute.

A form of interval training, the goal with this workout is to complete a certain number of reps of a particular exercise within 60 seconds, and to use whatever time is left in that minute to rest. At the top of the minute, you then move on to the next exercise set.

EMOM workouts are a fun, challenging, and convenient way to improve your fitness. Plus, you can easily change this type of workout to keep it interesting and aligned with your fitness goals.

When done regularly, this type of interval training can help you build strength and endurance, while burning fat and boosting your metabolism.

If you’re new to exercise or have an injury or chronic health condition, be sure to check with your healthcare provider before starting a new fitness routine.