The Fitness Challenge Board Game: Are You Up to It?

Updated September 7, 2021
Smiling woman giving high five to her friend after exercising

The Fitness Challenge board game can help you lose weight! It's designed to challenge adults to work on their exercise and fitness goals for eight weeks while competing with a partner who is also trying to work on their individual goals.

Game Background

The game was developed in 1998 by Vicki Sorensen as a way to motivate herself and her fiancé, Scott, to lose some weight before their wedding day. Vicki thought that she and Scott might not have the motivation to keep up a regular workout program. So, she developed a point system and rewards to motivate them to exercise at least three days a week for eight weeks.

Sharing Weight Loss Success

The game gave Vicki and Scott the motivation they needed. On the day of their wedding, Scott had lost 20 pounds, and Vicki was down to a size six.

Vicki also used the game to lose the 60 pounds she had gained with the pregnancies of her two children. This time she played the game with her mom, Stephanie, who wanted to get back into shape after spending five months on crutches with a broken leg. Both were able to get back into shape using the game.

Vicki and Stephanie shared the game with friends and neighbors who wanted to get into shape. Based on their results and the fun that everyone was having using the game, they decided to make the game available to the public.

Fitness Challenge Foundation, Inc.

Sales of the Fitness Challenge board game benefited groups that promoted health and wellness, medical research, and children's and family issues. One dollar from the sale of every game went into the Fitness Challenge Foundation, Inc., a non-profit organization whose mission is to support these types of charities and community organizations. This foundation is no longer available.

Playing the Fitness Challenge Board Game

You can play the game regardless of your fitness level. You can be starting with a fitness routine, or you can already have an established exercise program.

  1. Start by selecting a partner to challenge. The partner could be your spouse, co-worker, neighbor, relative, or friend. The two of you will have a friendly competition, challenging each other to lose weight and get fit.
  2. Each player establishes the exercise program they want to follow.
  3. The game has a point system designed to motivate you to exercise at least three days a week, every week for eight weeks.
  4. You select the days, the number of hours, and the type of exercise.
  5. You have a wide variety of exercise options, from walking to weight training to biking to mountain climbing.
  6. The game tells you how long you have to do each exercise to get the full fitness result.
  7. Each player posts their progress on the scorecard.
  8. Players earn stars and fun "mini prizes" as they achieve their program goals.
Group of woman train in a sunny park

Place a Wager

You can select from the 100 wagering coupons to make a Wager Book, your incentive to stay on track. The wager coupons are fun tasks you or your partner have to accomplish if you don't stay on track with your exercise program. The tasks include activities like:

  • Walk the dog
  • Clean out a dresser drawer
  • Take me on vacation

Game Variations

Like most games on the market, you have a few different variations you can try when playing.

Instant Gratification

You and your partner can compete each week for "mini prizes." Both of you pick one of the wagering coupons. The person ahead at the end of the week gets the "mini prize" noted on the wagering coupon they have selected.

Kick It up a notch

Compete for four workouts each week instead of three. Save the 3-point star for that fourth workout.

Accessible Fitness Challenge

You can modify the exercise list to meet your needs. One of the founders played the game with a broken leg, earning her stars by doing 30 minutes of floor leg lifts.

Fitness Squared

You can decide to combine two activities from the exercise list, such as walking AND weight training.

Short on Time?

You can compete for four weeks instead of eight.

Game Pieces

Since this game is no longer sold in stores, you can find it on resale sites like eBay. To make sure your game has it all, explore what comes in the box.

  • 1 scorecard
  • 1 rule book
  • 1 Fitness Challenge contract
  • 100 zany wagering coupons per player
  • 1 list of exercises
  • Re-usable star stickers
  • Magnets and hooks
  • 2 wager coupon books
  • 1 dry erase marker

Winning the Game

The winning player is the one to complete their exercise program and earn more points than the other player.

Is This For You?

If exercising is boring and you need a motivational boost, this game is for you. Maybe all you need is a little old-fashioned competition from someone who wants to stay on their exercise program as much as you do. Consider giving this as a gift to your potential partner! It's a great way to say, "Let's meet this challenge together."

Getting Challenged

Losing weight is hard. However, when you add a little competition, it can become more fun. That's the premise behind the creation of The Fitness Challenge board game. While you can't find it in stores anymore, you can still find this weight loss game at resale shops.

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The Fitness Challenge Board Game: Are You Up to It?