Joco Diversions

Look to real-world workouts, like the kitty litter curl and the swimsuit lift

Who needs weights when a hefty box of cat litter will do the trick?
Who needs weights when a hefty box of cat litter will do the trick? Special to The Star

In a moment of quiet desperation I signed up for one of those “try for 30 days” online fitness programs where you have access to hundreds of different workouts with names like “bootylicious boot camp” and “sad flab to fab.” My goal was to do a different workout every day.

I did vow that I would steer clear of the meditation “workouts” that involved lying down and focusing on your breathing, because for me that’s code for taking a nap. Although, I have to admit it sounded infinitely better than spending 60 minutes conquering “slaying the squats”

As you have probably guessed, I didn’t achieve my goal of 30 days 30 new workouts. The positive thing that came out of this experience, though, was that I got a brilliant idea for a new kind of workout regimen. I’m going to call it “Everyday Greatness.”

The concept behind it is that by just putting a little more oomph in your everyday existence, you can substantially increase your calorie burn and overall fitness level. It can be as simple as the vacuum dead lift.

Who among us haven’t had to carry the vacuum up the stairs? The next time, raise that almost 15-pound behemoth and turn it into a chest press while tightening your core and focusing on your posture.

Another everyday classic is the “Kitty Litter” workout. This involves deep arm curls using a 20-pound jug of kitty litter. Your warm up is when you retrieve the kitty litter from the top shelf at Target and have to execute a flawless heave-ho to get it into the cart. You continue this maneuver as you repeatedly lift the jug from the cart to the check out stand back into the cart then into your car and finally out of your trunk and into your house.

I’m no exercise physiologist but I’m guessing if you use good form and make sure you’re also focusing on engaging your ab muscles as you repeatedly lift the kitty litter that’s got to burn some calories and improve, not just your core strength, but also function as a “balance challenge.”

This next workout is more female centered and involves a wet one-piece swimsuit. Ladies, begin with sucking in your stomach and clenching your gluteus maximus. Now get ready to feel the burn and do some high intensity training as you do bicep curls while clutching the moisture sodden Lycra infused swimsuit in both hands and begin tugging with all your might to pull the suit up the lower half of your body. Next, add some cardio by jumping up and down in hopes that this will somehow help move the one-piece in a northern direction.

When you finally, through an impressive arm workout, have gotten the one-piece to your upper quads it’s time to really “kill it” by pushing yourself to do one more massive arm pull up to get that suit up and over the buttocks region.

By this time you may need to catch your breath, but if you’re a true champion you can push through and yank that wet Lycra neck adjacent. Now it’s time to bring your heart rate back down by wiping the sweat off your forehead and perhaps having a discreet cry.

Don’t worry, you’ve earned it. This exercise is akin to putting an XS sports bra on an Orca whale. Most especially in my case where my swimsuit was at least one size too small, which totally upped not only the calorie burn but also the personal agony.

But tears aside, I think we all need to toss off the summer doldrums and commit to upping our everyday fitness game because nothing says beast mode like bench-pressing your Dyson.

Reach Sherry Kuehl at snarkyinthesuburbs@, on Facebook at Snarky in the Suburbs, on Twitter at @snarkynsuburbs on Instagram, and