Pumpkin Fit: A Full Body Workout

Patient Expert
Jaime Galinsky

Halloween: Ghosts, goblins, and bite sized candy. It’s scary stuff. October can challenge your fitness plan just like any other month containing a holiday, especially if you have children hauling in treat stashes so enormous they’ll never know you’ve stolen a piece...or 12. Yet there’s hope!

Just as you have a moral compass that keeps you from egging your neighbor’s house for passing out toothbrushes instead of Twix, you happen to possess the magic of will power that affords you the superhuman strength to keep chocolate away from your face. You just need to exercise it.

Speaking of exercise … with all the ways to get fit these days, I thought: What would be the perfect way to embrace the Halloween spirit without gaining extra pounds? Why turning you all into a bunch of Cinderellas of course! So, grab the kids’ pumpkins off the porch (before they are half-rotten and swarming with fruit flies) and use them as weights. It’s time to get “pumpkin fit!”

Disclaimer: I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again. I haven’t reinvented the wheel with this workout. Let’s not take ourselves too seriously here either. This is a quirky themed workout intended to get you thinking outside the box and encourage you to move your body. The only excuses are the ones that we create for ourselves. So, grab those orange gourds y’all, and let’s get started.

Pumpkin Fit: 8-10 reps, 3 sets

Shoulders — Arnold double pumpkin press

A rotation to a shoulder press activates the three heads of the deltoid — the lateral, anterior, and posterior — to work the entire shoulder with one move. Start by holding two light pumpkins (the small ones you’d use for pumpkin pie work best) in each hand with palms facing in toward the chest, squeeze the glutes, and turn the core on. Rotate palms out and up pressing the pumpkins overhead and at full range.

Biceps — double pumpkin hammer curls

Grab the pumpkins by the stems. While keeping the upper body and arms stationary use the bicep to curl the pumpkins up to the chest. Hold briefly and inhale on the way down. If your stems aren’t long enough, hold smaller palm-sized pumpkins in your hands with your palms facing up and lift the pumpkins to your chest.

Triceps — double pumpkin kickbacks

Feet underneath the hips and tip over at a 45-degree angle. Grip two pumpkins by their stems. While keeping the upper body and upper arms immobile, use the triceps to fully extend the forearm until they are parallel to the floor. Bring back to a 90-degree angle and repeat.

Glutes and hamstrings — Romanian pumpkin lifts

Feet hip width apart. Grab the base of one larger pumpkin (the heaviest you can hold). With back straight and knees soft, keep your weight in your heels and drive your butt back as you lower the pumpkin toward the ground and rise.

Posterior chain and core — squat with pumpkin twist

Hold the base of a medium pumpkin (the kind you’d use for jack-o-lanterns) and drop into a squat with the pumpkin held to the outside of one foot. Utilize the core and with arms fully extended, slice through the air on a diagonal while twisting the core. Finish with arms extended overhead to the diagonal. Five reps on each side.

Core — pumpkin pulse with arm and leg extension

Lie on your back with your lower back snapped to the floor. With arms fully extended over the chest, pulse a medium or large pumpkin twice to the ceiling, then slowly lower the pumpkin toward the floor. To turn it up a notch extend the legs to 45 degrees simultaneously with the arms.

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Pumpkin Fit Infographic