Fun Workouts To Try At Home This Summer

As a lot of people focused on fitness will tell you, it’s important to vary your workouts. Generally speaking you should mix up cardio and strength training, but even within these categories you should keep your body guessing to some degree. With weight training, you should find different ways to work the same muscles rather than settling into a routine that will get boring and repetitive. And with cardio, as Shanna has said, you should alternate your approach, sometimes going steady, sometimes working on HIIT.

The idea of mixing it up is easy to grasp. The difficult part is finding interesting ways to do it. But sometimes letting go of rigid workout structures and having some fun is a nice way to start. Following that line of thinking, here are a few fun workouts we’ve heard about that you can try at home this summer.

Do Playing Card Push-Ups

You might have heard of the playing card push-up workout. The idea is pretty simple. You shuffle a deck, place it face down, draw a card, and do the number of push-ups corresponding to the number on the card. Then a workout partner flips the next card and does the same. You can also mix things up and challenge yourself a little more by assigning colors, rather than taking turns (like you do push-ups for every club or spade and your partner handles diamonds and hearts). It’s a really simple and surprisingly fun way to work in some home strength training.

Keep in mind, while this workout is best known for push-ups but you can apply it to just about anything you can knock out reps. It could be a kettle bell lift, sit-ups, or even sprints or jump roping. Playing cards can cover the whole spectrum.

Set Up Drone Races

You might have heard about drone racing lately. It’s been on ESPN at odd hours of the day and night, and there are reports that major bookmakers are eyeing its potential as the next big “sport.” The idea is pretty simple, and pretty cool: drone pilots watch through mounted cameras and race them through tricky courses. That’s not exactly a good way to get exercise—but you could try a different kind of neighborhood drone race.

In the version we’re suggesting, you race against the drone. It may be a fool’s errand if the drone is a fast one, but there’s fun and exercise to be had trying to catch an insurmountable rival. There’s a game some basketball players play called “Beat the Pro.” In this drill you shoot to get a certain number of points, but every miss counts as two baskets for the invisible “Pro.” Racing a drone can be kind of like that. The odds are in favor of your friend or family member operating the machine, but you can try your best to beat it every time, and get some great sprinting workouts in in the process. If that seems like too much, your friend can just follow your run with their drone to keep you company, and maybe give you some pointers on your form.

Try A Backyard Game

A backyard game with friends or family members can be a great way to work up a sweat, provided we’re not talking about something like bocce or croquet. Fortunately, some of the newer backyard games that are actually geared much more toward activity. We have two specific suggestions.

The first is Speedminton, a play on Badminton that doesn’t require a net and basically involves slapping a small fluttering ball back and forth to your heart’s content. The second is Spikeball (or one of its knock-offs, like Slammo), which took off after an episode of Shark Tank. It’s kind of like a miniature combination of four-square and volleyball played off of a trampoline-like net, instead of over one. Both games are a lot of fun, and Spikeball in particular can be a shockingly good bit of exercise!