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Full-body workouts you can do with a partner

By Steve Steinberg, upwave.com
updated 7:04 AM EST, Thu February 13, 2014
Working out with a partner is one way to get your heart rates up for Valentine's Day.
Working out with a partner is one way to get your heart rates up for Valentine's Day.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Hand-slap push-ups force you and your partner to work together
  • Other exercises allow you to support each other
  • Try "the forbidden dance of the fitness world"

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(upwave.com) -- There are few things that you can do with your partner that are more romantic than working out.

OK, there are actually about 10 million things you can do that are more romantic. But as long as you need to get a workout in, you might as well make it quality, just-the-two-of-you time, right?

When I train couples, I always try to have them do something a little bit special together on Valentine's Day. (It's a heck of a lot less creepy and traumatic than what I have them do for my special Halloween workouts.)

Once you're done getting your heart rate up and getting sweaty with the full-body workouts below, feel free to do whatever it is you need to do together to keep those heart rates up and the sweat pouring. 

upwave: The perfect full-body workout

Good: Hand-slap push-ups

Get into a push-up position head-to-head with your partner to work your chest, shoulders and core. (If you were doing this on the face of a clock, your feet would be pointing to 12:00 and your partner's to 6:00.) To reduce the risk of serious head bonkage, keep about a foot or space between the two of you.

Drop down and do a push-up, and when you come back up, slap right hands with each other. Do another push-up, then slap left hands with each other. The hand slap isn't just a great way to cheer each other on and encourage a few more reps, either: Once those hands come off the floor, your opposite shoulders and cores are forced to work a little bit harder.

Shoot for sets of between 10 and 20 push-ups total. (You can drop down to your knees to do them if necessary.)

upwave: Quick 5-minute upper body workout

Better: Heart-opening side planks

It's a win-win situation: You get to develop your core, hip stability and back strength while maintaining butt-to-butt contact with your significant other! 

Lie on your side, and lift into a Side Plank so only your feet and your forearm are touching the floor. Have your partner do a Side Plank back-to-back with you.

The exercise starts when your partner passes a five-pound dumbbell to you under your raised bodies. Grab the weight with your free hand and slowly raise it toward the ceiling. (Your upper body will twist first toward, then away from the floor as you do so, and you'll feel a nice chest-opening stretch.) Slowly lower the weight and pass it under your bodies back to your partner, then have them raise it toward the ceiling.

Shoot for 10 raises each, then switch sides. (If things get too wobbly, your partner literally "has your back" to stabilize you -- just like he or she does in real life!)

upwave: Quick 6-minute core workout

Best: The lunge tango

This exercise transforms stodgy lunges into the "forbidden dance of the fitness world." Stand face-to-face with your partner. Step forward into a lunge with your right leg, keeping your knee aligned over your heel. This will force your partner to step back into a lunge with their left leg. (Reverse lunges are a great way to work balance and get a deep calf stretch.) Step back to starting position, then step forward into a left-leg lunge. Again, this will force your partner to do a backward lunge with their right leg.

Return to starting position and let your partner lunge forward, first with the right leg and then with the left. This exercise will challenge your legs and core, and help you create body awareness. If you happen to stumble, your partner is right there to catch you. Once you get the rhythm down, speed the movements up and do minute-long sets to add a cardio component to the dance.

upwave: Take the challenge and get your groove on!

This article was originally published on upwave.com.

© 2013 upwave, All Rights Reserved.

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