Make March Madness More Fun with This Fitness Challenge

A UC Davis player battles a player from North Carolina Central for the ball.
University of California Davis’ Chima Moneke, left, and North Carolina Central’s Pablo Rivas fight for control of the ball in their NCAA First Four tournament game at the University of Dayton Arena, March 15, 2017. (R.J. Oriez/U.S. Air Force photo)

Add another dimension to your NCAA basketball tournament bracket. While you are placing your picks and getting fired up to cheer on your favorite teams, challenge your friends to this simple game. It's free, and everyone is a winner (even if you get every pick wrong), and will help counteract the effects of all the beer you will consume over the next couple of weeks.


1. Once the NCAA tournament selections have been made, have everyone in your pool select their picks for the first round only

2. Each person designates their "stake." Stakes are based on a person's level of fitness and determine how many push-ups and pull-ups they will commit to in each round. Choose between the following stakes: Just for Fun (one set of designated reps per exercise per round), Serious Fan (two sets), and Die Hard (three sets). 

3. Each round, determine the number of push-ups and pull-ups each person has to complete. You can have each person complete on their own or while the group is together. Try to complete all designated push-ups and pull-ups in the least amount of sets possible.

4. Keep track of totals over the course of the tournament. There will be two overall winners for this bracket tournament: (1) the person with the most correct picks, and (2) the person with the most total push-ups plus pull-ups. Winner 1 wins the glory of having the best picks; Winner 2 receives the benefits from having done the most upper-body strength work over the tournament; everyone gets the benefit of improving their push-ups and pull-ups. You can't win that in Las Vegas.

Use this chart to determine how many push-ups and pull-ups each person has to do per round:

Charlie Mike -- Alden

Alden Mills, creator of the Perfect Pushup, is CEO of Perfect Fitness. Mills went to the Naval Academy, where he went on to become a Navy SEAL. After retiring in 2000, he earned his MBA at Carnegie Mellon. His ultimate mission is to inspire everyone to pursue their own dreams. For more from Mills, check out

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