Deck of Cards Workout (Bodyweight Exercises)

Deck of Cards Workout: Bodyweight Exercises - each suit corresponds to a different exercise and the number tells you how many reps to do. Flip over one card at a time until you make your way through the entire deck.

I’m going to start each week in April by sharing a deck of cards workout on the blog. This first one is all bodyweight exercises, but I’ll be incorporating equipment into the others (sliders, dumbbells, kettlebells). If you haven’t heard of this structure, it’s a really fun way to switch things up!

I’m not going to put a YouTube version of these workouts on my channel because unless you went through the whole thing at the exact same pace as me, it’d be a pain–you’d have to pause or fast forward the video after each card was turned over. Doesn’t make sense! I will have a video preview though so that you can see the exercises in action. These will be posted to my Facebook page, Instagram and embedded here. And for all my YouTube subscribers–don’t worry! I’m going to still post other workouts in video format throughout the month in addition to these.

Deck of Cards Workout (Bodyweight Exercises)


All you’ll need for this workout is a deck of cards. There are also smartphone apps for deck of cards workouts you can download if you want to take this to the gym. Shuffle the deck and you’ll flip one card over at a time until you’ve gone through the entire deck. Each suit corresponds to a different exercise and the number of the cards tells you how many reps to do.

Face cards = 10 reps
Aces = 11 reps
Joker = 15 reps, exercise of your choice

As with all workouts, make sure to warm up beforehand. This 5-minute warm up is a great one if you need some guidance!

Deck of Cards Workout: Bodyweight Exercises - each suit corresponds to a different exercise and the number tells you how many reps to do. Flip over one card at a time until you make your way through the entire deck.

Deck of Cards Bodyweight Exercises

CLUBS – Surfer Get Ups | Start laying on your stomach with hands by your side. Squeeze your back and glutes to lift your chest and hands off the ground. Lower your hands back to the ground by your rib cage. From here, you’re going to explosively press up and jump into a low squat with one foot in front and the other staggered behind (think of a surfer jumping up on the board to catch a wave). From here, bring your hands back to the ground as you jump your feet back into plank lower your body to the ground with control. Repeat from the top, this time landing in low squat with your other foot in front.

DIAMONDS – Bicycle Sit Ups | Start laying on your back with your hands lightly behind your head, elbows bent out to the sides and chest open. Engage your abs, pulling your bellybutton down to the floor as you lift your legs off the ground about six inches to a hover. This is your starting position. From here, bend your right knee in towards your chest as you crunch your left elbow across to meet it, lifting your back off the floor like a twisting sit-up. Your left leg should remain outstretched in a hover as you do this. Slowly return back to the starting position and continue, crunching in the same direction the entire time. The goal is to keep the legs off the ground the whole time, but if you need to modify, your left heel can quickly rest on the floor in between reps. Complete the full number of reps on the right and then the left.

SPADES – Jump Tucks | Jump up into the air, using your core to pull your knees up towards your chest. Lower them quickly in time to land. You’ll want to bend your knees, sinking into a squat to prep for the jump, and you’ll land this same way, sinking into a squat to absorb the landing. As you jump up bring your hands in front of your rib cage and try to hit them with your knees.

Low(er) Impact Modification: Jump Squats. If you have a history of knee pain or are otherwise at risk of injury with high-impact movements, do jump squats instead of jump tucks. The landing is gentler.

HEARTS – Hovering Fire Hydrants | Start on your hands and knees in a tabletop position, hands stacked under shoulders, knees stacked under hips. Plant the balls of your feet on the floor and lift your knees to hover a couple inches off the floor. Keeping your right leg in that 90-degree angle, lift that knee out and up in a wing motion (like a dog lifting to take a pee), opening up at the hip. Bring it back in close to the starting position. As you do these, pay attention to your core: You want a straight spine, protecting the low back by pulling your abs in tight the whole time. You also want your hips to stay right around shoulder height, so keep your supporting leg at a hover; resist the urge to straighten your stationary knee. Complete the full number of reps on the right and then the left.

Deck of Cards Workout: Bodyweight Exercises - each suit corresponds to a different exercise and the number tells you how many reps to do. Flip over one card at a time until you make your way through the entire deck.

WEARING | leggings c/o Terez // tank c/o Aurum

It’s been a while since I’ve posted a deck of cards workout, but I’ve got a bunch from the archives on this page you can check out. 

Quick, Intense Bodyweight Cardio Workout (10-Minutes)

This 10-minute bodyweight cardio workout is quick but INTENSE.This bodyweight cardio workout is proof that longer doesn’t always mean harder. In just 10 minutes, I was completely breathless and my legs were on fire–I’ve been doing that hot feet exercise since my elementary school basketball days and it still kills me!

This quick, intense cardio workout is high intensity and some of the moves are definitely high impact as well (lots of jumping). If you’re working with knee issues or just looking to dial down the intensity a bit, I’ll talk about modifications for all the exercises in the video.

10-Minute Bodyweight Cardio Workout

The first 9 minutes of this workout have an interval structure: 40 seconds of work / 20 seconds of rest x9. During the 40 seconds of work, you have a primary exercise and then a secondary exercise you’ll do every 10 seconds. Here’s the breakdown:

40 sec Hot Feet, every 10 seconds do a Jump Tuck
20 sec Rest
40 sec High Knees, every 10 seconds Hit the Floor
20 sec Rest
40 sec Mountain Climbers, every 10 seconds do a Low Squat Snap
20 sec Rest
x3

You’ll then do a 60-second finisher: 20 seconds Hot Feet, 20 seconds High Knees, 20 seconds Mountain Climbers.

This 10-minute bodyweight cardio workout is quick but INTENSE.

Bodyweight Cardio Exercises in This Workout

Hot Feet | You probably know these best as a basketball or football drill. You essentially run in place as fast as you can while in a wide-leg squat position. With your feet a bit wider than hip-width apart, squat down. Staying low, you’ll quickly run your feet up and down, staying on the balls of your feet and barely picking them off the floor (an inch or two) so that you can maintain the speed.

  • (every 10 sec) Jump Tuck | Jump up into the air, using your core to pull your knees up towards your chest. As you jump up bring your hands in front of your rib cage and try to hit them with your knees.

High Knees | Maintaining good posture (don’t hunch forward!), run in place, using your core to drive your knees up high as you do. Sometimes I like to hold my hands at about belly button height as a guide and drive my knees up to hit them. Keep these quick! If you have knee issues or need to modify, march in place instead of run (but still get those knees up high!).

  • (every 10 sec) Chest to Floor | Think burpee. Hands are going to come to the floor as you bend your knees and jump back into a plank, bending your elbows and lowering your chest to the floor with control. Once you hit the floor, straighten your arms, pressing your body back up through plank and then onto your feet.

Mountain Climbers | These are like doing high knees in a plank position. Start in a plank, hands stacked underneath shoulders, core squeezing in tight (don’t let your low back sag or your butt stick up in the air). From this position, drive one knee at a time up towards your chest, like running horizontally. The pace on these should be quick.

  • (every 10 sec) Low Squat Snap | From your plank position, jump your feet up and outside of your hands as you release your hands from the floor, landing in a low squat position. Stay low and just quickly bring hands back to floor and snap back into a plank.

This 10-minute bodyweight cardio workout is quick but INTENSE.

WEARING | Lululemon tank (found it on thredUP for cheap–this referral link will get your $10 off your first order) // Crane & Lion x Recycle Studio leggings

This workout could absolutely be used on its own if you’re looking to fit in a whole lot of sweat into a short amount of time on busy days. It also makes for a great quick cardio finisher to weight lifting sessions or other strength-focused workouts. Here are some pairing ideas:

Build-a-Compound-Exercise Full Body Workout

Today’s workout will require you to think a bit. We’ll be building exercise combos sort of like a non-dancey dance. If you have moments in the workout where you feel a little lost, no worries! This is a good workout to revisit, as the more times you go through it, the more seamless the exercise combos will become.

You can go through the video once for a quick 15-ish minute workout or you can go through the video twice, back to back, for a solid half hour workout.

Build-a-Compound-Exercise Full Body Workout

Equipment I Used

This workout is structured like a game of Simon. Every 30 seconds you add onto the exercise sequence until the last 30 seconds where you’re doing a four-part compound exercise combo. You’ll have five sequences like this focusing on full body, abs, arms, right leg, and finally the left leg. You’ll then finish the workout by doing each of the five final combos back to back for 60 seconds each. Here’s the breakdown:

build combo 1
build combo 2
build combo 3
build combo 4
build combo 5
combo 1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + 5

If it sounds confusing, just follow along with the video! 🙂

Full Body Dumbbell Workout - you'll build exercise combos gradually and then repeat them

COMBO 1 (Full Body)

Every 30 seconds, you add on a movement. So for the first 30 you’ll just just the squat. Then you’ll do the squat and the jump back to plank position. After 30 seconds of that combo, you’ll do the squat and the jump back to plank and a renegade row. The final 30 seconds you’ll do the complete four-part combo with the push up.

Weighted Squat
+Jump Back to Plank
+Renegade Row
+Push Up

COMBO 2 (Abs)

Every 30 seconds, you add on a movement.

Suitcase Crunch Skull Crusher
+Leg Extension
+Leg Lift
+Crunch Weight to Toes

COMBO 3 (Arms)

Every 30 seconds, you add on a movement.

Hammer Curl
+Bent Lateral Raise
+Shoulder Rotation
+Shoulder Press

COMBO 4 (Right Leg)

Every 30 seconds, you add on a movement.

Curtsy Lunge to Side Kick
+Low Center Squat
+Jump Squat
+Back Lunge

COMBO 5 (Left Leg)

Every 30 seconds, you add on a movement.

Curtsy Lunge to Side Kick
+Low Center Squat
+Jump Squat
+Back Lunge

Finisher

Do each of the complete combos (the sequence you were doing the last 30 seconds of each of the above five combos) for 60 seconds, back to back.

Full Body Dumbbell Workout - you'll build exercise combos gradually and then repeat them

WEARING | Times Square Leggings by Phat Buddha c/o Shopbop // Almondon LadyBug Tank (<– discovered this brand through the YBC mantra box)

 Have a great day everyone! If you haven’t already, subscribe to my YouTube channel. Over the next couple months I’d like to get into a more regular publishing schedule where I put up a new workout video every Tuesday and then a different video on Thursdays. What do you guys like watching on YouTube? Vlogs? Product hauls? Recipes? Would love to know what you’d like to see from my channel!