THERE’S ONE SUREFIRE way to make a hard-hitting, quick and dirty workout challenging: lots and lots of reps. That’s the approach Charlie Meredith, NASM-CPT, Barry’s Chief Curriculum Lead in New York City, took when he designed this five-minute session.
The routine is simple. You’ll only need to do three exercises, but the cumulative work will pile up quickly, since your delts will be taking on the entire load. You’ll need three sets of dumbbells—a heavy, medium, and light set, depending on your fitness level—but it won’t be a bad idea to have some lighter weights in reserve as the reps pile up.
You’ll probably start strong, then find you’re struggling to complete all of the reps as the rounds press on. That’s just fine. Rather than pushing through pain, be smart. Do what Men’s Health senior editor Brett Williams, NASM did when he took on the workout: Drop down to lower weights and slow your movements to prioritize form over speed once you feel your form starting to slip. You’ll still get a nasty upper body challenge without as much risk of injury or total muscular failure.
The Barry’s Delt Destroyer Workout
Perform each exercise for the allotted number of reps, then move on to the next with little to no rest. Repeat for as many rounds as possible within the five-minute time frame. Add on the optional finisher with any leftover time. Once form begins to slip, switch to lighter weights and emphasize proper movement over speed.
Dumbbell Overhead Press
12 to 15 reps
Dumbbell Around the World
Lateral Iso Hold
Optional Finisher: Partial Lateral Raise Pulse
Brett Williams, a fitness editor at Men’s Health, is a NASM-CPT certified trainer and former pro football player and tech reporter who splits his workout time between strength and conditioning training, martial arts, and running. You can find his work elsewhere at Mashable, Thrillist, and other outlets.