Training alone has its benefits—the ability to completely focus on pushing yourself without distractions or small talk. Training with a partner, on the other hand, if you do it right, can introduce a whole new competitive vibe. To avoid the common pissing contests to see who can bench press the most, we’ve asked personal trainer Alfonso Moretti, owner of Angry Trainer Fitness for his ideas to give a mundane training partner session a competitive edge.
Push-up Hand Tap
Face each other in push-up position. Each time you finish a rep, clap each other’s opposite hand. Throw some hand position variations in to make it more challenging for your opponent.
What it challenges: Pecs, delts, triceps and core.
Loser of the bet: Whoever stalls first has to rep out 40 burpees.
Stand on one foot and hold a dumbbell in each hand, laterally raise each dumbbell at your sides to shoulder-height. Start the timer and see how long you can hold that position. Remember it’s one-legged! If your toe touches the ground or the dumbbells go below shoulder-height, the timer stops. Combine your times for the right leg and the left leg. The longest collective time wins.
What it challenges: Balance, endurance, coordination and stability.
Loser of the bet: Rep out single-leg calf raises on each leg to complete failure.
Find the closest pull-up bar and open floor space. One person performs a pull-up while the other does a burpee. After completing the first rep, switch places. For the next round each person does two reps each then switches, followed by three reps each, four reps, etc. Keep going until one of you can’t go anymore.
What it challenges: Back, pecs, triceps, biceps, shoulders, core and cardiovascular endurance.
Loser of the bet: Complete as many pull-ups as possible to failure, then complete as many burpees as possible to failure.
The Double Century Challenge
Perform 25 reps of each of the following exercises: push-ups, jump squats, kettlebell swings and swiss ball pikes. The fastest person to complete the sequence of exercises twice with perfect form wins.
What it challenges: Pecs, legs, core, shoulders, lower back and cardiovascular endurance.
Loser of the bet: Complete an additional two sets of the sequence.
Quarter Mile Drag
Hop on the treadmill and prepare for a two-mile race. After each quarter mile, stop and perform one set of 20 reps of each of the following exercises:
One-Legged Deadlifts – 10 per side
Dumbbell Squat & Press
Alternating Reverse Lunges – 10 per side
Then, hop back on the treadmill. The first person to reach two miles wins.
What it challenges: War on the entire body.
Loser of the bet: Complete five wind sprints for 10 seconds with 30 seconds rest.