The 15-Minute Upper Body Destroyer

Stretch and Roll Out:


Set timer for 15 minutes. Complete as many rounds of the circuit below as possible, resting only as needed. Record how many rounds and reps you complete.

5-10 reps Pull Ups
5-20 reps Push Ups
1 rep 10-20ft Forward/Backward Crawl
10-20 reps Butterfly Sit Ups

Stretch and Roll Out:


Do not go to failure on any move because that will cause you to need to rest. Stop a few reps short so you can keep moving from exercise to exercise. Rest only as needed because your goal is to do as much work in the 15 minutes as possible.


Pull Ups – Hang from the bar with your palms facing away (you may also sub in chin ups or a neutral grip pull up). Press your chest out and draw your shoulder blades down and back. Then pull your chin up above the bar. Once your chin reaches above the bar, lower back down. Stay in control. Do not kip or swing. As you fatigue, you may swing a little on the last rep or two, but it shouldn’t be used to do reps quickly. Beginners may want to use a pull up assistance machine or their feet on the ground or a band to help them perform their pull ups.

pull up back exercise
Push Ups – Beginners will do either an incline push up with their hands up on a bench or a push up from their knees. Advanced exercisers will do a push up from their hands and toes. For any variation, start by lying on the ground with your legs together. Place your hands outside your chest. Draw your belly button in toward your spine and squeeze your glutes. If doing this move from your toes, you will then press up onto your hands and toes. Your body should move in one straight line. Everything should move together as you press up to the top of the push up with the arms full extended. Do not let your butt go up in the air or your hips sag toward the ground. Do not tuck your chin. Keep your head in line with your spine. Make sure to keep your core tight so your low back doesn’t arch. Then lower back down, making sure your body moves as one unit. Touch your chest to the ground and then lift right back up. If your body doesn’t move together, if you do the “worm” as you press up or down, regress to your knees or an incline push up.

push up isometrics
Forward/Backward Crawl – Set up on your hands and knees with your knees under your hips and your hands under your shoulders. Then flex your feet and lift up onto your toes. Take a step forward with your left foot and right hand, keeping your knees close to the ground and your back flat. Then step forward with your right foot and left hand. Keep alternating moving the opposite arm and opposite leg together. Once you’ve crawled forward the 10-20 ft, you will then reverse the crawl. Take a small step back with your right foot as you step back with your left hand. Take small steps, especially moving backward. If you reach too much with your leg, you are going to put more strain on your shoulders and your movement will get off. The opposite arm and leg need to move together. Keep your knees close to the ground as you move backward. Beginners may need to perform a baby crawl from their knees and hands.

basic crawl

Butterfly Sit Ups –To do Butterfly Sit Ups, sit on the ground and place the bottoms of your feet together. Bend your knees into the Butterfly stretch, letting your knees fall open as you bring your heels in toward your crotch. Keeping your knees open and feet together, lie back on the ground. Then sit back up and come back up to the seated position. The more you swing your arms, the easier the move will be. Also the closer in your feet are to your body, the harder the move will be (this will also be based a bit on flexibility as well).