Chris is the news anchor, Sam does the weather. But these Good Morning America team players have an off-screen rivalry--in the gym, where they bust each other's chops. "It's not just the muscles that become stronger--the friendship does, too," Cuomo says. ("Or not," jokes Champion.) They have the right idea: People lift more weight when others are watching, according to an Arizona State University study. Between jabs, here's how the morning-TV guys maximize their gym-buddy benefit.
1. Pick someone as serious about exercise as you are.
"It's almost like picking a teammate," Champion says. The two men work in the same office, so their schedules are in sync. And they share the same goal: staying fit for the camera. "You need someone who will push you without making everything a competition," says Cuomo, "and I think referring to Sam as 'fat boy' is motivational."
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2. Separate work from the workout.
Cuomo and Champion have an agreement: "The gym is not a therapy session," Cuomo says. Champion agrees: "We save our chatter for motivation, and for the occasional weakness jokes." And they leave their BlackBerrys in the locker room. No distractions. Just results.
3. Mash up routines.
"With a workout partner, you aren't caught in a rut," Cuomo says. They take turns figuring out new challenges they can work on together. "Chris often rips a page out of a magazine with some wacky new routine," says Champion. "He'll say, 'Let's try this Romanian hanging dumbbell press!'" Good luck with that one, guys.
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4. Have a backup plan.
Cuomo and Champion routinely ship out to breaking-news zones where gyms aren't always available. So they explore new travel workouts, and trade tips on how they've done. "We both like FitDeck for the road," Cuomo says, "which is a workout in a playing-card set." ($15, fitdeck.com)
5. Become an ace spotter.
Having a spotter you trust allows you to push yourself with proper form. "Leaving the gym without injury is our main goal," Cuomo says. Then there's the ego boost: "There's nothing more empowering than hearing Sam beg for help with 1 more rep," Cuomo says.
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Best New Exercise: Hip raise with head on a Bosu ball
Glutes are vital for lower-body power, says strength coach Mike Boyle, A.T.C. "This exercise may be one of the best moves because it targets the knees, hips, and glutes for maximum muscle."
How to do it:
1. Lie faceup on the floor. Position your head and shoulders on a Bosu ball, round side up. Your legs should be bent about 90 degrees and your feet flat on the floor and nearly together.
2. Begin by raising your hips so that your body forms a straight line from knees to shoulders. Place your arms at a 45-degree angle from your body, and keep your core muscles (abs and glutes) tight.
3. Lower your butt until it lightly touches the floor, and then lift it to the starting position by squeezing your glutes. Hold that position for 5 seconds, and repeat. Complete 2 or 3 sets of 8 to 12 reps.