Supercharge Your Home Workout

home workout fitness

Written by Gerard Hatfield

March 26, 2020

Boost your Home Workout with these 3 simple tips.


I wrote an article a few days back “5 Must Have Home Workout Fitness Products” which outlines fitness equipment that will boost your home workouts on a budget within a limited space.  Well today,  I am going to focus on how you can create a more intensive and enjoyable fitness workout at home by applying and manipulating the training parameter of - TIME.

We can easily ramp up the intensity of a home fitness workout by simply adjusting the time protocols.  Here we will discuss three simple ways through –

  • Tempo
  • Work to Rest Ratio
  • EMOM - Every Minute on the Minute

Any of the above workout structures can be utilized in a variety of fitness training scenarios but today we will focus on how they can be implemented into a home workout, which for many, will revolve around minimal fitness equipment and workout space.

“Adhering to strict rest time protocols will boost the intensity of your home workout fitness sessions, especially for those using minimal fitness equipment during their workouts.”

Tempo - The Rhythm of Exercise!

The tempo is essentially the time to complete 1 repetition.  Think of it as the rhythm of the movement.  You may even see it prescribed in advanced fitness programs as a tempo in the form of 4 numbers like this:


What does it mean you may ask?

  • 4 = Time in seconds of the eccentric (or lowering) phase of the movement
  • 0 = Time in seconds of any pause at the midpoint
  • 1 = Time in seconds of the concentric (or lifting) phase of the movement
  • 0 = Time in seconds of any pause at the start of the movement before beginning the next repetition

Let’s use a Push Up as an example utilizing a tempo of  (3-3-1-3)

Starting from the top of the Push Up movement (starting position) take 3 seconds to lower yourself to the bottom phase.  Once at the bottom point, pause and hold for 3 seconds.  Now push up to the starting position within 1 second.  At the top of the movement before beginning a new repetition, hold at the top for 3 seconds.

As you can see this creates enormous time under tension to the muscles being worked.  It is easy to see how doing 10 reps using a tempo like this can be much more of a challenge then 10 repetitions using a conventional tempo which tends to be (1-0-1-0).

For most,  I recommend a tempo of 2-0-2-0 for most exercises but feel free to have a play around with a few different tempo structures.  As recommended earlier, it’s a great way to increase the difficulty of the exercise movement which is great for the home workout due to limited fitness equipment but it can also help with an improved control and stability of your lifting which is important for injury prevention. 

“Increase the intensity, time under tension and control with a better movement tempo during your home workout.”

Work to Rest Ratio Variations

Using the correct work to rest time duration can dramatically increase the efficiency and work capacity of your fitness workouts.  Essentially most HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) takes advantage of a structured Work to Rest ratio.  Take the Tabata structure as an example.  It is 20:10 - so this means 20 seconds of maximal work with 10 seconds rest for a total of 4 minutes.  What makes the Tabata ratio notoriously difficult is that it uses a negative rest time protocol in relation to work time.

Personally I prefer to use ratios based on 60 seconds such as: (I will not reduce the ratio for simplicity of showing seconds)

  • 20:40
  • 30:30
  • 40:20

Even a 60:60 works well!  There really is no “one & only” way to do it but those examples above are a great starting point.  

Example Workout

  • Work:Rest - 30:30
  • Rounds - 16 (16 minutes total)
  • Movements - Push Ups - Jump Squats - TRX Rows - Alternating Reverse Lunges

The above is a basic example of how to structure a workout session.  Perform 30 seconds of as many Push Ups as possible, rest for 30 seconds, then begin 30 seconds worth of Jump Squats and so on.  The key is to work hard, try and do as many reps as possible in each 30 second block!

Home Workout Fitness Timer

You can purchase an interval timer which is a durable no fuss option or go down the cheaper route, pick one of many interval fitness timers available as an app for your mobile phone.

EMOM = Every Minute on the Minute

You may of seen this acronym around within the fitness community, particularly within Crossfit circles.  This is one of my favorite fitness time structures to use, especially when planing or doing a home workout.  It’s extremely easy to implement and scale to any fitness level, from beginner to the advanced fitness trainer.

The variations are endless but essentially it comprises of selecting a movement or numerous movements, total time duration and a rep count that you will complete every minute.  Here is an extremely basic example workout below.

Example –

  • Movement (Burpees)
  • Repetitions (6)
  • Duration (10 Minutes) = 10 x 1 minute rounds

Using the above example, start the timer and perform 6 reps of Burpees.  If the 6 Burpees takes you 25 seconds to complete,  you now have 35 seconds rest.  At the top of the next minute you will perform 6 Burpees again.  Essentially the quicker you complete your reps, the more rest you will get and vice versa.

What will happen over each round is the effect of accumulative fatigue.  It tends to get progressively harder as each round starts to take longer to complete, alongside shorter rest periods.  

With this in mind it is quite important to select an appropriate repetition range for the total workout duration.  A good rule to thumb is to select a number of reps that will take approximately 20-30 seconds to perform when fresh, before fatigue sets in.  Again the options here are subjective to your fitness levels and how hard you want to push yourself each workout.

Home Fitness Training

Burpees… What??  For 10 minutes? What a horrible choice of an exercise to place in the example! Well if you are slightly mad,  feel free to crack on with them.  Otherwise,  choose any of your fav exercise movements for your home workout.   

Home Workout Fitness - Boosted!

So, no more random rest times between sets and uneffective workouts.  By using any of the home workout fitness tips above you can ensure the effectiveness of your home fitness sessions, especially if you have limited access to fitness equipment and workout space.  It really is quite simple to use any of the 3 tips mentioned to introduce them into your home workout fitness plan.

Should you require any help or have any questions on how to make your home fitness workout more effective, contact us anytime, I’d be glad to help.  Or check out our online personal training fitness app if you would be interested in a tailored home workout fitness program.

For more info on our Fitness Training Services at Hatfield Personal Training please contact us at [email protected]

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