Create Your Perfect 20-Minute HIIT Workout With This ‘Would You Rather’ Game

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A round of "Would You Rather?" typically begins as an innocent ice breaker and quickly turns into a pretty high-stakes standoff.

For your next cardio session, pick from our selection of exercises to build your own 20-minute HIIT workout.
Image Credit: Vlad Dmytrenko/Moment/GettyImages

But in this version of the classic game, you won't risk revealing any too personal: The only thing you'll be facing is a sweaty high-intensity interval training (HIIT) session.

As you move through this workout, you get to build your own routine, choosing the move you'd rather do each round.

Do each exercise to a rate of perceived exertion (RPE) of about 8 or 9 out of 10, recommends K. Aleisha Fetters, CSCS, author of Fitness Hacks for Over 50. You should feel pretty breathless working this hard: The exercise should feel difficult to sustain and you should only be able to speak a few words at a time.

Once you reach this level of intensity, rest for 30 seconds before repeating each round for 3 to 4 sets total. And while you should feel out of breath, don't totally empty the tank with each set.

"You'll want to work at quite a clip, but always prioritize form over speed," Fetters says. "Going into each set, you should feel like your heart rate has come back down and you've caught your breath, but you shouldn't yet feel 100 percent back to baseline."

When you're done with your workout, note which exercises you skipped. Then, on your next cardio day, give the opposite exercises a try!

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Would You Rather Round 1

Move 1: Inch Worm

Move 1: Inch Worm
Image Credit: LIVESTRONG.com/K. Aleisha Fetters
Body Part Abs, Arms, Chest, Shoulders, Legs, Butt and Back
  1. Start standing with your feet hip-width apart, arms at your sides.
  2. Hinge at your hips and bend your torso toward the ground, placing your palms on the floor.
  3. Keeping your legs as straight as possible, walk your hands out until you're in a high plank position, hands directly under your shoulders.
  4. Pause in high plank for a moment.
  5. Reverse the motion and walk your hands back toward your feet, then return to standing, keeping your legs as straight as you can.

Move 2: Mountain Climber

Move 2: Mountain Climber
Image Credit: LIVESTRONG.com/K. Aleisha Fetters
Body Part Abs, Arms, Legs, Shoulders and Chest
  1. Start in a high plank position, balancing on your palms and toes with your body in a straight line from heels to hips to head. Keep your palms under your shoulders and your back in a neutral position.
  2. On an exhale, engage your core and drive your right knee up toward your chest.
  3. Return your right knee to the starting position.
  4. Repeat on the other side, driving your left knee to your chest.
  5. Alternate between right and left as quickly as you can while maintaining the plank position.

Tip

"The focus with both of these is to maintain a strong rigid torso and get the core muscles activated and ready to support you throughout the rest of the exercises," Fetters says. These exercises will also start to warm up your upper and lower body.

Would You Rather Round 2

Move 1: Skater Lunge

Move 1: Skater Lunge
Image Credit: LIVESTRONG.com/K. Aleisha Fetters
Body Part Butt and Legs
  1. Start standing with your feet shoulder-width apart, arms at your sides.
  2. Rooting your right foot into the ground, lift your left leg a few feet behind you and across to the right side of your body.
  3. Plant your left toes on the ground and lower your left knee toward the ground, bending your right knee to about 90 degrees. As you lunge, keep your back flat and chest up.
  4. On an exhale, shift your weight into your right leg and raise your left leg off the ground.
  5. Hop your left foot back up next to the right but a few inches to the left.
  6. Land on your left foot and repeat the back crossover lunge with the right foot.
  7. Alternate between left and right sides as quickly as you can.

Move 2: Reverse Lunge to Knee Raise

Move 2: Reverse Lunge to Knee Raise
Image Credit: LIVESTRONG.com/K. Aleisha Fetters
Body Part Abs, Butt and Legs
  1. Start standing with feet hip-width apart, arms at your sides.
  2. Shifting your weight into your right leg, raise your left leg and plant it a few feet behind you.
  3. Keeping your shoulders back and chest up, lower your left knee toward the ground and simultaneously bend your right knee to about 90 degrees.
  4. When your left knee hovers just above the ground, reverse the motion quickly and return to standing.
  5. As you stand back up, drive the left knee up toward your chest before placing it back on the ground.
  6. Repeat this motion on the right side, alternating between the two.

Tip

"Both moves involve some single-leg work to improve hip stability and core strength and will get your heart rate up like whoa," Fetters says. Plus, these exercises strengthen the glutes and quads with no equipment.

Would You Rather Round 3

Move 1: Push-Up

Move 1: Push-Up
Image Credit: LIVESTRONG.com/K. Aleisha Fetters
Body Part Arms, Chest, Abs and Shoulders
  1. Begin in a high plank with your core and glutes engaged. Your shoulders should be stacked over your wrists and your hips should be in line with your head and heels.
  2. Bend at the elbows at about a 45-degree angle from your torso and lower your body toward the ground.
  3. On the way down, squeeze your shoulder blades together.
  4. When your chest hovers just above the ground (or however far down you can go), press into the ground and push your shoulder blades apart to return to the starting position.

Move 2: Plank With Shoulder Tap

Move 2: Plank With Shoulder Tap
Image Credit: LIVESTRONG.com/K. Aleisha Fetters
Body Part Abs, Arms, Chest and Shoulders
  1. Begin in a high plank with your core and glutes engaged. Your shoulders should be stacked over your wrists and your hips should be in line with your head and heels. Avoid sinking or hiking your hips.
  2. Root your left palm into the ground and bring your right palm to tap your left shoulder, pausing there briefly.
  3. Bring your right palm back down and repeat on the other side, bringing your left palm to your right shoulder.
  4. Alternate between right and left shoulder taps, keeping your hips as stable as possible.

Check out more of our 20-minute workouts here — we’ve got something for everyone.

Would You Rather Round 4

Move 1: Elevated Single-Leg Glute Bridge

Move 1: Elevated Single-Leg Glute Bridge
Image Credit: LIVESTRONG.com/K. Aleisha Fetters
Body Part Butt, Legs and Abs
  1. Start lying on the ground with a chair or stool by your feet (the edge of your couch works, too).
  2. With your arms at your sides, bring your right heel up onto the chair, extending your left leg straight alongside the right hovering in the air.
  3. On an exhale, press into your right heel to raise your hips up until your body forms a straight line from chest to hips to knees.
  4. Pause here for a moment, squeezing your glutes.
  5. Lower your hips back down to tap the ground before you press into the next rep.
  6. When you complete all your reps, switch legs.

Move 2: Prone Hip Extension

Move 2: Prone Hip Extension
Image Credit: LIVESTRONG.com/K. Aleisha Fetters
Body Part Abs, Butt, Legs and Back
  1. Start lying with your torso on the armrest of a couch or chair. Your body should be supported only until the start of your hip bones with the rest hanging off the edge.
  2. Grasp either the sides of the armrest or legs of the chair for support.
  3. Bend your knees and bring the bottoms of your feet together. Maintain this position throughout the exercise.
  4. On an exhale, raise your knees up until they're in line with your hips, feet reaching toward the ceiling.
  5. Pause here, squeezing your glutes and actively driving your knees apart while maintaining contact between your feet.
  6. Lower your knees back to the starting position.

Tip

Both of these exercises will target the glutes, Fetters says. But you'll probably feel the burn in slightly different regions, depending on which you choose. With the glute bridge, expect to feel the work where your glutes meet your hamstrings, while the prone hip extension will fire up the glute medius on the side of your rear.

Would You Rather Round 5

Move 1: Contralateral Limb Raise

Move 1: Contralateral Limb Raise
Image Credit: LIVESTRONG.com/K. Aleisha Fetters
Body Part Abs and Back
  1. Start lying facedown on the ground, arms and legs extended straight out.
  2. Keep your hips rooted to the floor.
  3. On an exhale, raise your right arm and left leg a few inches off the ground and pause. Avoid over-arching your back.
  4. Lower back down with control.
  5. Raise your left arm and right leg at the same time to hover just above the ground.
  6. Lower back down.
  7. Alternate sides with as much control as possible.

Move 2: Y Raise

Move 2: Y Raise
Image Credit: LIVESTRONG.com/K. Aleisha Fetters
Body Part Abs and Arms
  1. Start lying on the ground with your arms straight overhead and slightly out to the side, forming a Y shape.
  2. Extend your legs straight behind you, keeping them zipped together.
  3. With your neck long and hips pressing into the ground, exhale and raise your arms a few inches off the ground.
  4. At the same time, raise the legs slightly above the ground.
  5. Pause here for a moment and then lower back to the ground with control.

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