Let the Games Begin

by Joe Lawrence | October 28th, 2013 | 15 Minutes or Less, Strength Training

deck of cardsIsn’t it amazing how we can think of an endless number of excuses to get out of working out. Just as I sat to type this article, I was thinking of how I could get out of doing my push up routine. Seriously, in less than 15 minutes a day we can do something small to burn some stress and improve ourselves. That is nothing considering the average DVR’d sitcom is roughly 20 minutes when you skip the commercials. That means in the time it would take you to watch Sheldon sing Soft Kitty, you could do 5 minutes of excuses and 15 minutes of working out.

I got to thinking about how easily I can get out of fitness, but I never turn down a game. Why not combine the two?

We have all heard of the Rip Deck routine where you take a deck of cards and assign exercises to each suit. Then draw cards and the number on the card is the amount of reps for that exercise. You have a certain window to do that in. This theory is fun to combine with a card game that establishes a societal hierarchy. It is called many names and all of them are expletives; however, there is a president, vice president, the stooge, and many other made up offices dependent on amount of players.

I will give you one version and you can be as creative as you like. My version is for four people.

Hearts – jumping jacks; Spades – crunches; Diamonds – diamond push ups; Clubs – squat thrusts.

Take a deck of cards deal out that many piles. In the first pile there should be five cards; the second ten cards; the third fifteen; and the fourth twenty. The last two cards just set aside.

Now, flip the top card of each pile over. This is the status challenge. Each person has to do each of the exercises as a set. For example the top cards are: five of clubs; six of diamonds; jack of hearts; and three of diamonds. This would be five squat thrusts; six diamond push ups; eleven jumping jacks; and three more diamond push ups. Someone does the ready-set-go thing and all get busy.

First person done grabs the pile of five; second the pile of ten; and so on. The first person gets to be the president; second is the vice president; third secretary; and fourth the stooge or whatever other nickname you can muster.

Every hour or two meet up and run the deck. Each person has to do the cards in their pile. The way to move up in status is to get done before the others. For example, you are the stooge and beat the vice president…you trade piles.

To make it extra fun, live up the status throughout the day. Have the stooge fetch coffees for the others. Have fun with it to motivate each other.

(Photo courtesy of Sanja Gjenero)

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All health and fitness information is provided for educational purposes. Please consult with your physician before beginning any exercise regimen.