For the most time-efficient workouts, compound exercises are recommended as they stimulate all the major muscles in the body and create the greatest change in body composition in the shortest time. As an added bonus, compound exercises help develop the body proportionately.
Squats are often said to be the most beneficial exercise for the lower body as it works all the major muscles including your butt, thighs, and calves. The squat will also strengthen your stomach and back muscles since you are using them for balance.
A bench press is a multi-joint exercise because both the shoulder and elbow joints are working to execute the movement.
Finally, the dead lift exercise which may be seen as the most intimidating for women is my favourite exercise. This is more of a power move and you will find you can increase your weight a lot more. The exercise will make use of your back and core as well as thigh and legs also. It is important that you begin to lift with your legs and never your back, once you are about halfway through the move that is when you straighten your back. By not doing this will most likely cause injury and force your back into a curve taking all of the weight rather than your legs muscles.