The Most Challenging Exercise You'll Ever Try

Learn about a ridiculously tough but fun exercise that builds strength and endurance at the same time.

You probably rolled down a hill at some point when you were a kid. Maybe you even had races with your friends to see who could roll down the hill the fastest. You get filthy, but rolling is just plain fun.

It turns out that slightly tweaking this activity creates one of the most difficult exercises you could ever try. All you need to do is roll uphill instead of downhill. Yes, it sounds kind of ridiculous. But it's a great way to build strength and endurance at the same time.

The Uphill Roll requires your muscles to move your body instead of letting gravity do it for you. Rather than simply rolling over, grasp the grass with your hands and pull your body to roll up the hill. The first few rolls will be easy, but fatigue will quickly set in as you make your way up the hill.

Performing the Uphill Roll builds your upper-body strength—particularly your back and forearms—and your core must engage to maintain control of your body. Since all of these muscles are working, it quickly elevates your heart rate and builds muscular endurance.

It looks ridiculous and kind of awkward (as I do in the video above), but trust me, it's worth a little embarrassment in the service of improving your fitness. Plus, it's kind of fun.

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  • Choose a hill with moderately high grass. You should be able to grab the grass to pull yourself up.

  • Try to keep your body in a straight line throughout the roll by engaging your core and keeping your legs straight.

  • There's a tendency to roll uphill at an angle. Work to keep your legs in line with your upper body so you roll straight up the hill.

  • When you first try this, you might need to use your legs to drive up the hill. As you get stronger, let your upper body do the work instead of your legs.

Uphill Roll How To

The Most Challenging Exercise You'll Ever Try

  • Lie on your back at the bottom of a hill. Extend your arms to the side so they form a T with your upper body.

  • Keep your core tight and legs straight.

  • Grab the grass with your hands and pull yourself up the hill.

  • Continue rolling up the hill for the specified distance.

  • Slowly walk down to the starting position between sets.

Sets/Distance: 4-5x20 yards

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Photo Credit: Getty Images // Thinkstock