You wouldn’t get a tattoo or give birth without someone holding your hand, so why suffer through an intense workout without a good pal by your side? (Yes, burpees produce a different kind of pain —but it’s still enough to induce f-bombs.)
The truth is, it’s easier to withstand a brutal burn if you’re bonding over it with someone else, which is quite possibly why Los Angeles’ Training Mate bootcamp studio has been so successful. “If you have a really strong community to exercise with, [you’re] more likely to maintain a sustainable, healthy lifestyle,” says Luke Milton, the former Australian rugby team captain who founded the studio in 2013. “The great thing about us is we’re very inclusive and lighthearted about working out. We’re here to make fitness social.”
Training Mate’s high-intensity circuit training may be all about team-building and encouragement, but that doesn’t mean the classes are soft—as the studio’s super-fit celebrity clients like Rachel McAdams and Tyra Banks can attest. To celebrate his new Studio City location, Milton designed a 30-minute partner workout exclusively for Well+Good readers, which he says “uses different planes of the body and engages every major muscle group.” Plus, it’s fun—the hardest part about this might be getting through face-to-face planks with your BFF without breaking into laughter.
Grab a partner and scroll down for Training Mate’s 30-minute HIIT workout—we guarantee it’ll be way more entertaining than your usual jog-and-gossip sesh.
Set a timer and do each move in the circuit for 45 seconds, with a 15 second rest in between moves. Run through the circuit three times and then take a water break before moving on to Circuit 2.
Keeping hands directly underneath shoulders, do a push-up. At the top of the push up, reach out and touch your partner’s opposite hand.
Face your partner with your feet together. Jump your feet apart into a squat, then jump them back together as you return to a standing position.
Come into a forearm plank position and hold for 45 seconds while looking at your partner (this helps to keep your spine neutral).
Set a timer and do each move in the circuit for 45 seconds, with a 15 second rest in between moves. Run through the circuit three times and then take a water break before moving on to Circuit 3.
Sit back to back with your partner, with feet in front of you shoulder width apart and knees slightly bent. Keeping the abdominals engaged, twist through the trunk to one side and hand off a kettle bell (or other weighted item) to your partner, then twist to the other side as they hand it back to you.
Come into a shortened lunge position, with the knee of your back leg close to the ankle of your front leg—take care not to let the front knee go past your toes. With your back knee as close to the floor as possible, pulse a few inches up and down, driving down through the heel of the front foot. Switch legs after 45 seconds.
Do a burpee while your partner rests, then alternate. This helps stabilize your heart rate—so you can fit a few more burpees in—while allowing each partner to check the other’s form and cheer them on.
Set a timer and do each move in the circuit for 45 seconds, with a 15 second rest in between moves. Run through the circuit three times, and you’re done!
Come into a boat pose with your feet touching your partner’s, keeping the abdominals engaged and the back as straight as possible. (This position ensures you can’t cheat by dropping your feet!)
Lay on the floor while your partner stands over you, facing your feet. Grab your partner’s ankles. Keeping your lower back pressed into the ground, raise your legs—when they reach a 90-degree angle to the floor, your partner pushes your legs back down. Switch places after 45 seconds.
Med Ball Partner Pushes
Come into a push-up position with each partner facing opposite directions, shoulders in line with each other and a medicine ball in between. One partner does a regular push-up while the other does a push-up with one hand on the medicine ball, then alternate. Try not to let the ball move at all—this is the challenge!
Training Mate, 7825 Santa Monica Blvd., West Hollywood, CA, 90046, 323-380-5492; 12429 Ventura Blvd., Studio City, 91604, trainingmatela.com
Ready for more? Keep going with this 15-minute partner workout by The Fhitting Room and SLT or cool off with these yoga poses for pairs. If you’ve only got five minutes, this do-anywhere, full-body burn workout is for you!