Working out is hard. There, I said it. It’s out in the open now.
It’s even harder when you’re trying to do it alone. It’s all too easy to talk yourself out of it—especially when Netflix and the couch are calling your name. That’s why working out with a partner is so beneficial. And during these unprecedented times, when gyms may or may not be open, and you may or may not be leaving your house, working out at home with your partner is a great way to stay connected and to keep from going completely insane. After all, you can only watch Tiger King so many times.
So here is an at-home workout you can do with your partner. Like they say, the couple who works out together…has to fight each other for the shower first.
Get into a push-up position facing your partner; choose whichever push-up position is most comfortable for you: on your toes or knees. As you come up from your first push-up, reach across with your left hand and give each other a high five. Then when you come up with your second push-up, reach across with your right hand and give each other a high five. Continue switching between your left and right hand until you’ve completed 10 push-ups.
Have your partner get into a push-up position. While standing with your feet a little more than shoulder width apart, lift their legs from the ankles and bring them up to your waist. With your upper body slightly bent forward, lift their legs about 4-6 inches, keeping your arms close to your body and your elbows back, so that you feel your triceps contracting. Bring them back down to your waist. Complete 10-20 reps, and then switch places with your partner.
Back-to-Back Wall Sits
Press your back against your partner’s back, feet shoulder width apart, and squat down. Make sure your torsos stay upright. Keep your knees at a 90 degree angle to the ground. Hold for one minute.
Kneel on the floor, body upright. Your partner should stand behind you, holding your legs so you don’t move. Start lowering your upper body to the ground; then, when you’re nearly to the ground, start moving your body back to the starting position. Complete 8-10 reps, then switch positions.
Modified version: Once you’ve lowered yourself as far as you can, use your hands to catch yourself on the ground, then push yourself back to the starting position.
Plank and Reach
You and your partner should get into a plank position, facing each other, one arm’s length apart. Make sure your body is parallel to the ground–that your butt isn’t up in the air and that your stomach isn’t sagging toward the ground. With your left arm and your partner’s right, reach out to each other and give each other a high five. After all, planks are hard! Return to your starting position with both elbows on the ground before using your other hands to reach out to each other again. Repeat for one minute.
Lying Leg Throwdown
Lie down on your back, while your partner stands over you, with their feet on either side of your head. Grab your partner’s ankles to anchor yourself to the ground. Lift your legs into the air, keeping your legs as straight as possible. Use your abs to lift your butt and lower back off the ground. Have your partner push your legs down toward the ground. When they push your legs, try not to let them touch the ground before you bring them back up. Complete 10-20 reps before switching positions.
Plank Hold and Jump
While your partner holds a plank, jump over their body. You can do any kind of jump you want—normal, side-to-side, one-legged hops—just as long as you jump high enough to make it over your partner! After you’ve completed your predetermined number of jumps, switch positions.
While this works best with gloves and mitts, as long as you don’t hit too hard (save those aggressions for the bag!), you can use your bare hands. Get in your boxing stance: For a right-handed person, left foot forward, right foot back and about 2-3 inches out (for southpaws, the opposite). Have your partner hold up their hands, palms facing out, arms bent and steady. Practice your left jab and right cross (or right jab and left cross if you’re a southpaw), being sure to exhale with each punch. Have your partner move around so you can follow them. Stay light on your feet! Switch positions every 1-2 minutes.