Happy National Best Friends Day!
To celebrate, grab your bestie and get to work on these fun (well, at least we think they’re fun) ways to get fit together and, while you’re at it, throw on our BFF Spotify playlist to set the mood.
Friends who sweat together, stay sweaty together.
Aside from encouraging, working out with a best friend or spouse who is also your best friend can help you face challenges with more motivation and maybe even reach your fitness + health goals more quickly. We’ve seen it enough times at HCI to know with someone doing the same exercise next to you who holds you accountable, cheerleads or offers a bit of healthy competition, you seem to push harder in the best ways possible. Whether you started working out together because you’re best friends or became best friends because you met while working out or are looking for a reason to start working out with someone, these exercises are for Y-O-U guys.
Exercise 1 — Med Ball Core Pass or Toss
Get those abs fired up with 10-15 sit-ups, your favorite person and a med ball or some kind of weight.
For the PASS: Both besties lay flat on your back, knees bent and ankles overlapping. Softly hand off the med ball (at a weight that safely challenges you both) at the top of each sit-up. Partners who don’t have the med ball can choose to wait at the top or do sit-ups in tandem, every time.
For the TOSS: Start in the same position except add enough distance to safely throw the med ball to your partner at the top of each sit-up.
Exercise 2 — Med Ball Slams with Bestie
For a full body workout, try 3 sets of 10-15 reps with a 45-second rest.
Extend the med ball overhead and slam it down finishing in a squat position. Besties will catch the ball as it bounces back up and repeat the slam. For an extra challenge, add in a jump squat while you wait.
Exercise 3 — Squat pass
Targeting the lower body (glutei and all) AND obliques, try passing the med ball 10-15 times per side so 20-30 total.
Stand back to back with enough room to stay in a traditional squat the whole time (feel the BURN). Both of you will twist your upper bodies to the side while keeping your lower body planted as the ball is being passed. Say bestie 1 turns to the right, bestie 2 turns to the left to grab the ball. Then, bestie 2 will turn back to their left and bestie 1 will retrieve it on their right (that counts as ONE rep). Bestie’s can alternate sides or finish the reps on one side and then start the other side.
Exercise(s) 4 — Arms with Bestie + Resistance
We’re giving you a few options for your arm + upper body workout depending on the muscle(s) you want to target.
All you need is one resistance band (your frenemy) and the right distance to give you both enough resistance to complete the exercise safely.
Tricep Kickback or Row — Stand facing your favorite person with knees slightly bent and core and back engaged OR lower into a traditional squat. Each one of you will grab an end of the resistance band with the mirroring hand and start with a 90 degree bend in the elbow hugging into your sides. Then, at the same time, row back! 10-15 reps per side should do the trick.
Chest Press — For this exercise, Bestie 1 will perform the exercise and Bestie 2 will be the anchor. Bestie 1 will stand with arms raised to the side and elbows bent at 90 degrees. Bestie 1 will hold the ends of the resistance band making fists (palms facing down to the ground) and leaving the loop of the band behind them. Bestie 2 will grab the loop of the band facing the back of Bestie 1 and step away creating tension in the band. Bestie 1 will perform 8-12 reps of chest press — fully extending the arms forward and then returning back to the 90 degree bend. Then, switch.
Shoulder and Lats Press — For this one, you won’t need the band. Bestie 1 will start with arms down by their sides and Bestie 2 will place hands on top of Bestie 1’s forearms. Bestie 1 will start to raise arms straight out to the side until reaching a straight line from shoulders to fingertips as Bestie 2 presses down softly against the upward movement to provide resistance. As Bestie 1 lowers the arms back down, Bestie 2 flips the hands underneath the forearm and adds resistance upward. That is one set. Do 8-12 reps and then, switch partners!
Exercise(s) 5 — BFF HIIT Circuit
Try this HIIT (high intensity interval training) series for cardio endurance. Do each exercise for 45 seconds and rest/setup for the next exercise for 15 seconds. Try three rounds with only a 45-second to 1-minute rest in between rounds!
Turning Jump Squats — Start facing away from each other. Start in a traditional squat and as you jump do a 1/2 turn to face your partner. Smile or frown, tell them you’re dying or offer your condolences. And then, jump squat back the way you came. Repeat, but turn over the other shoulder so you’re alternating directions. If you guys end up being uncoordinated, laugh it off, but don’t forget to breathe.
Plank Taps — Start in a high plank position with your heads facing each other. Reach one hand towards their opposite shoulder as they do the same and tap it. Then, switch sides.
Plank Hold + Jump — One bestie will stay in a forearm plank while the other jumps (both feet in the air at the same time in a tuck) from side to side over their feet as fast as possible. Repeat the exercise switching besties.
Lunge Switches with a High Five — Face and mirror each other for this final exercise of the HIIT series. Get into a lunge bending both legs at 90 degrees, pulse for two, then jump to switch sides. Add a high-five after each switch for encouragement, you’re going to need it.
We love seeing HCI besties smile through the tough stuff and hope you enjoy this workout!