‘Biggest Loser’ deck of cards workout a routine you can do anywhere

There’s no sitting or snacking during this card game. The deck of cards workout keeps you moving through many reps of four exercises 52 times. Photo by Daily Record/Sunday News — Jason Plotkin.

During an episode of NBC’s “The Biggest Loser” Season 14, trainer Bob Harper used a deck of cards as a tool in contestants’ “last-chance workout.”

I’m a new diehard fan of “The Biggest Loser.” I always thought the show was inspiring and would watch it occasionally, but I never watched a season start to finish. But this season was different. I had to watch it because my idol Jillian Michaels came back after a year hiatus from the show and because the show incorporated kids in an effort to stop childhood obesity. My heart goes out to those kids who are working so hard to get healthy.

I like to use body-weight training while working out in my home. Sometimes I get gym memberships, but I prefer to exercise outdoors when I can or do DVDs in my living room. Right now, I don’t have a membership and I just finished a nine-week workout, so I’m working on designing my own workout schedules, and I’m having a lot of fun.

Celebrity trainers Bob Harper and Jillian Michaels both have used the deck of cards workouts to burn calories and shed fat. Photo by Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP.

My boyfriend recently suggested that we try doing the deck of cards workout that we saw on “The Biggest Loser.” Suits designate what type of exercise you do. And you can choose your own exercises. For example, in our first deck of cards workout, spades equaled push-ups, hearts equaled jumping jacks, clubs equaled jumping lunges and diamonds equaled burpees. We made aces equal 15 reps.

Directions: Put on an upbeat playlist. Shuffle the cards. Pull a card and complete that number of said exercise (i.e. 9 of diamonds equals nine burpees). Try to keep moving through the exercises. See how long it takes you to complete an entire deck, and try to beat that next time.

Check out Jillian Michaels’ variation of the deck of cards workout.

It took us about 30 to 35 minutes to go through the deck. I liked this routine because it felt exciting not knowing what exercise and how many reps we’d have to do next. And it was a lot of fun to be our own instructor.

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About Leigh Zaleski

I'm a health features reporter for the York Daily Record/Sunday News and healthy living blogger for No Sweat, York. Contact me with story ideas at lzaleski@ydr.com, 717-771-2101 or @leighzaleski on Twitter.
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2 Responses to ‘Biggest Loser’ deck of cards workout a routine you can do anywhere

  1. Ali says:

    Great blog! There’s an app for that, so you don’t even need to have a deck of cards with you. No excuses! Try RipDeck, deck of cards iPhone workout app.

    You can RipDeck at home, in the gym, while traveling or anywhere. There are beginner, intermediate and advanced set workouts or you can customize your own.

    Share with us your fav custom workout. We may feature it and your blog on our In-App News and social media.

    http://ripdeckapp.com
    Like us on Facebook and follow @ripdeck on Twitter

  2. Pingback: BLEND Recap – Part 2 – Saturday!

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