Fun in the Sun: 4 Workouts You Can Do Outside
The sun is hot, the water’s warm, and the gym is…the last place you want to be. Fear not! You can still get your exercise in while soaking up some rays. Try these 4 workouts while enjoying the sunshine.
If January marks the season of packed gym floors, crowded cardio equipment, and limited space in the locker room, consider June & July the season of just the opposite.
It’s a ghost town in the weight room when the sun burns bright in the heart of summer. It’s the last place you want to go, but deep down you know that you’re missing your sweat sessions. The question becomes then, how do you manage to get in a few workouts during the week if the walls of your local gym feel like the walls of a jail cell when it’s so nice outside?
Luckily for you, we have an answer. A few of them, actually!
The idea that you can only get a good workout in by shuffling off to the gym is undoubtedly a misguided one. Sure, the weight room and cardio equipment offer more options for what you can do, but it’s not the only way to get your heart rate up, your muscles tight, and your sweat pouring down. Let’s take a look at a few different ways to get in a workout that you can be proud of while soaking in some summer rays in the process.
If you watch someone paddleboarding from afar, you would think that it is easy, relaxing, and a great way to be on the water without spending your life savings on a boat or a jet ski. But once you try to stand on a board and paddle a few hundred feet, you will quickly realize that what looks easy from a distance is actually quite challenging.
Although the process is simple, the execution is pretty hard. Let’s start with standing. Standing isn’t hard in itself, but trying to balance on a board while staying afloat is an entirely different battle. Your core will have to do some work to keep you upright. Then, just when you’ve figured out how to stand up straight without falling in, you realize that you have to use a paddle to propel you forward on the water. Your arms, shoulders, back, and chest will be burning whether you put sunblock on or not.
Once you get the hang of it though, paddleboarding can be an amazing way to get your body moving while enjoying the sunshine.
2. Hit the Beach…and Run
Have you ever walked the shoreline on the beach to reach a destination a mile or so away? In terms of enjoying the wind in your hair, sand between your toes, and warmth from the sun, it’s a great way to walk a mile.
But how did your legs feel when you finally arrived at your destination? Or better yet, when you woke up the next morning? You could’ve been convinced that you ran a marathon or ridden a bicycle cross-country from the aches that your lengthy beach walk created.
So in hopes of embracing and using this lower body torture to your advantage, we’re going to raise the bar of your beach transportation. Instead of walking down the beach…run!
You could choose to run a couple miles, or just decide to run some sprints down by the tide. Either way, your legs will have to adjust to the texture of the sand beneath your feet, making your lower body work overtime to keep you balanced and moving.
The best part about this beachside workout? When you’re finished, change into that bikini you’ve been looking forward to wearing all year and lay out a towel—you’ve definitely earned a little R & R.
3. Head to the Park With a Pal
I’m sure that there is a well-kept park within driving distance of where you live. Find a fitness-oriented friend, hit the road, and use the trails to mix in a HIIT workout while you enjoy the great outdoors.
You can always do this workout alone, but bringing a friend helps with a few things:
• Accountability – you’re less likely to either sit in your air-conditioned home, or lay out in the sun if a friend is counting on you to meet them up for a quick workout.
• Teamwork makes the dreamwork–with someone doing the workout with you, you can make certain moves like pushups or squats more challenging by creating small challenges or races amongst each other
• You won’t look like a weirdo–I say this in jest, but you won’t feel so self-conscious if you’re running around the park with a friend.
Now for the workout. It’s simple, but I can’t promise that it will be easy:
• 5 pushups, 5 air squats, 6 mountain climbers, and a 10-second sprint every minute on the minute for 30 minutes.
This will lead to about 40 seconds of work and 20 seconds of rest (which you can choose to stand still or walk slowly for), but if you stay with it for 30 minutes, you will be drenched with sweat.
4. Be a Kid and Play on the Playground
If you’re a mom, this option will work for both you and your little ones. When you think about the playground, you likely just acknowledge the slides, the swings, and anything else your kids obsess over. But there are plenty of little pieces of equipment that can assist with your fitness.
There’s likely something you could do pull-ups on.
There’s undoubtedly something you could climb.
And when all else fails, there’s nothing wrong with counting “chasing your kids around” as exercise.
No matter if there are kids in the picture or not, your local playground likely has a ton of stuff that you could climb, lift, or swing from that can work your body in more ways than you’ve anticipated. Drive over to the one closest to you and you’ll see what I mean.
Working out doesn’t require a weight room. You can be outside, get a tan, and tone your body all at the same time. We hope that you give these outside options a go and let us know which of them proved to be the most enjoyable. Now, go soak up the sun!