How 15-Minute Cardio Workouts Jumpstarted My Weight Loss

Get inspired by these DailyBurn success stories, which showcase real people who committed to fitness and saw results that were way beyond average.

For Chris Diggins, it was always difficult to find the time he needed to work out. He was a man with many commitments — teaching a church class at 5:30 a.m. before the school day started for his students, then off to his nine-to-five day job, and home to his three children (ages two, four and six) at night. “Exercise was just something I never had time for,” remembers Chris, who put on over 50 pounds since his wedding in 2005. “I told myself maybe when I was done teaching and had my mornings back I would.” But for two whole years, Chris’s obligations never waned, and so he continued to keep pushing off his weight loss.

“I wanted to get to 200 pounds but I figured with doing only 15 minutes here and there, there was no way that could ever happen.”

Fed Up

Topping the scales at 250 pounds by December 2013, Chris could no longer bare not being able to play with his kids, and seeing himself in family photos. Then for the holidays, his wife bought him a Roku device. Between streaming episodes of Downton Abbey, Chris saw a commercial for DailyBurn’s 30-day free trial. “I decided to look through the app and saw that there were workouts that could be done in 10 and 15 minutes,” remembers Chris. “It was the beginning of the year and I decided it was time to make a change.”

The First Fit Steps

Chris decided to start with DB15, a series of 15-minute workouts. DailyBurn was easier for Chris than the DVDs he had tried in the past, too; just a few clicks on the Roku and it was on. “DB15 MMA, that’s the first one I did,” he says. “I absolutely loved it.” Though he had a busy schedule, 15 minutes always seemed doable for the Kansas-native. After seminary, Chris would come home and spend 15 minutes a day focusing on his fitness. And if he happened to miss a day, he didn’t feel like a failure. “I tried not to set my goals too high,” he says. “I wanted to get to 200 pounds but I figured with doing only 15 minutes here and there, there was no way that could ever happen.”

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Navigating Nutrition

For years, nutrition wasn’t a priority for Chris. “I was eating a lot of fried food, plus holiday candy and chocolate,” he recalls. “I felt super lethargic.” But once Chris was finally committed to fitness, it was like a chain reaction. He began trying to eat healthier, too.

Chris cut out fast food entirely and prioritized portion control, which was an even bigger issue for him than the types of foods he was eating. Instead of indulging until he was full, the 33-year-old decided to aim for 1,800 to 2,000 calories a day. He began bringing his lunch to work so that if he had to leave the office at any point, it wasn’t for food but rather an outdoor walk. He focused on eating real, whole foods like egg whites and avocado.

“I don’t have to worry about being big, or how photos look, or running out of energy now. I can just live life and that’s really nice.”

Seeing the Results

In just a few weeks, with only 15-minute workouts and putting his portions in check, Chris was down 10 pounds. “I thought, ‘I can legitimately do this!’” he remembers. Chris continued with DB15, and tried a few other DailyBurn programs as well, like Inferno (high-intensity interval training) when he was up for a real challenge, or Move! (a cardio-dance program) when he wanted to have fun and smile. Using a website and app that could work with his schedule kept Chris honest and positive. “What set this apart was that it was the longest I’d been on any exercise program because it was hard to tell it no,” says Chris.

What’s Next

Today, Chris is down 61 pounds, weighing in at 189. While he still has more he wants to accomplish, Chris says he continues to make progress with DB15. However, he’s been throwing in some new challenges, too. “If I have time, I’ll stack my workouts and do DB15 MMA followed by Keaira’s ‘Superhero Boxing,’” he says. “And every now and then I throw in the ‘Bikini Butt’ workout, not because I want to wear a bikini but it’s a really good lower-body workout! If I have extra time, I’ll even do Tabata or a WTF session on top of it.”

For now, Chris is still taking things one day at a time. “I love being in shape because I’m able to do so much more than I used to,” he says. “My clothes look better, I feel more confident and happier, and I have more energy to play with my kids…that is when I don’t use it to work out!” He even just ran his first half-marathon last month.

Chris enjoys not ever having to tell his children, who never get tired, to stop. He also likes taking family pictures now. “I don’t have to worry about being big, or how photos look, or running out of energy now,” he says. “I can just live life and that’s really nice.”

To try DailyBurn’s DB15 program yourself, head to today.

Note to reader: For those seeking to lose weight, keep in mind that extreme weight loss can be harmful to your health if done improperly or too suddenly. Always talk to your doctor before beginning any exercise or weight loss program. DailyBurn users who do five or more 30-minute workouts weekly for 60 to 90 consecutive days report an average weight loss of about one pound per week.