5 Time-Saving Hacks For Better Health & Longevity

minimalist workout programming will safford May 27, 2024

-written by Coach Will Safford

As life’s demands have built up, one thing I’ve struggled with is balancing strength, conditioning, mobility and all of my other obligations.

The problem becomes, the older you get, the less you can neglect your mobility, strength, and resilience work.

As the risks of injury increase, so do the effects they can have on other parts of your life. You can no longer afford to be on the couch for 6 weeks or unable to provide for yourself or family.

But your health or resilience doesn’t have to suffer because you have less time to train.

Here are 5 hacks I use to save time while building strength, mobility, and durability for the mat.


A favorite way to build strength and mobility at the same time is with loaded mobility training. This kind of training uses an external load combined with specific movements to increase your range of motion.

You not only develop strength and mobility, but strength at the end range, which is where you want it to help prevent injuries and enhance durability.

It’s also a fantastic way to prime your body for strength training.

A few of my favorite loaded mobility exercises are the Cossack Squat, Windmill, Get Up, Shin Box, and Shield Cast.

Loaded mobility is my go-to if I need a quick workout.


The warmup is an essential part of any exercise session. It primes the body for movement, reduces the risk of injury, and engages the systems of the body for better performance. However, as vital as it is, the warmup doesn’t need to eat up your valuable time.

Instead, build your warmup into your workout.

Let’s say you have four sets of 8 kettlebell squats, 8 barbell bench press, and 8 bent over rows scheduled for your day’s workout.

Do bodyweight versions of each movement in a slower and controlled circuit to prime the muscles and joints with low impact on the system.

So, do 15 bodyweight air squats, 15 pushups, and 15 inverted rows for two sets before your working sets with weight, which will reduce your risk of injury while also burning fat and building strength in the process.

Use minimal rest between sets and rounds of the circuit to elevate the heart rate and warm the lungs, muscles, and joints.

Your entire workout for the day would look like this.

15 Air Squats

15 Push Ups

15 Inverted Rows


8 KB Goblet Squats

8 Barbell Bench Press

8 Bent Over Row




Similar to building your warmup into your workout, you can add reps to each set while keeping the weight the same. This is one of my favorite ways to warmup and get work done in a time efficient way.

For example, do a quick 5 minute bodyweight warmup like the one above, then do the following workout with as little rest as possible between exercises and rounds.

As you progress through the workout you will need more rest between rounds. You can probably get all this work done in less than 15 minutes.

Set 1

2 reps KB Goblet Squat @ 53lb

2 reps Barbell Bench Press @ 155lb

2 reps Bent Over Row @ 95lb

Set 2

4 reps KB Goblet Squat @ 53lb

4 reps Barbell Bench Press @ 155lb

4 reps Bent Over Row @ 95lb

Set 3

6 reps KB Goblet Squat @ 53lb

6 reps Barbell Bench Press @ 155lb

6 reps Bent Over Row @ 95lb

Set 4

8 reps KB Goblet Squat @ 53lb

8 reps Barbell Bench Press @ 155lb

8 reps Bent Over Row @ 95lb

Set 5

10 reps KB Goblet Squat @ 53lb

10 reps Barbell Bench Press @ 155lb

10 reps Bent Over Row @ 95lb

Set 6

10 reps KB Goblet Squat @ 53lb

10 reps Barbell Bench Press @ 155lb

10 reps Bent Over Row @ 95lb



The EMOM workout isn’t just a good way to save time, but an effective way to work out. Set a timer to go off every minute and simply start a new set every minute.

This type of training has a way of keeping you dialed in to your workout without being distracted.

You can use it for strength training, power development, metabolic conditioning or even mobility work.

Two of my favorite ways to use EMOMs is for strength or power.

For strength, pick 3 exercises of opposing muscle groups. For example, Goblet Squat, Shoulder Press, and Pull Ups.

Choose a weight that allows you get 5 reps of each with 2 in reserve. Set the clock for 15 minutes and perform one exercise on each minute, resting after the 5 reps until the next minute.

This will give you enough time to recover for a strength effort by the time you get back to the first exercise.

For power, pick 2 exercises, for example, squat jumps and med ball slams.

Set the clock for 5 minutes and perform squat jumps for 10 seconds at max effort, then rest for the remaining 50 seconds before repeating 4 more times.

Take a 2:30 minute break, then repeat the same thing with the med ball slams.

EMOMs are an excellent way to ensure progress while saving time.


Isometric training is the ultimate time-saving, minimalist training hack. You can build functional strength and muscle with isometrics in less than 10 minutes a day.

Isometrics involve max contractions against an unmoving resistance.

One very effective protocol is just one set of a 90 second hold. It’s called Time-Static Contraction and you ramp up to 100% effort over the 90 seconds.

The first 30 seconds is a 50% effort, the next 30 at 75%, and the last 30 is a full 100% effort.

Pick 4 or 5 exercises like a Wall Sit, Inverted Row, Push Up, and Table Bridge, hold each for 90 seconds, resting 30 seconds between and you’ll be done in less than 10 minutes.

Isometrics are also excellent way to train and heal old, beat up joints without the wear and tear.


At this age I’m trying to spend less time in the weight room and more time doing things that are important.

With smart programming, exercise selection, and high-value training methods, you don’t need to sacrifice your time to get the physical qualities you need to remain strong, mobile, and resilient.

You can get even more bang for your buck by combining the hacks above for even more effective use of your time.

Aging and the responsibilities that seem to come with it doesn’t have to rob your fitness and resilience.

Just train smarter.

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