It happens every summer. The temperature gets warmers, the daylight stays longer, and the sweaty aerobics class gets more and more unappealing. But since the occasional breeze is also a sign that spring season is around the corner, skipping exercising altogether won’t get you any closer to revealing those toned ab muscles in the bikini season.
The good news is you can still skip the indoor classes and get those toned arms and a tighter midriff section by exercising outdoors. It’s a great opportunity to engage in get-out-in-nature pastime while giving your body an effective workout to burn calories.
Here are some fun workout ideas to do on your own or with the family:
Jump rope is a great heart-pumping activity that raises body awareness. All it requires to get started is some comfortable shoes and a light-weight rope that won’t slip when the hands get sweaty. The right rope length is the one that reaches the level of your chest. Beaded or plastic ropes work better than cotton and can be whipped around faster, allowing for a more intense workout.
Jumping rope in varying styles also gives your body a terrific cardio-respiratory exercise and improves muscular fitness. You might even learn some dance moves while performing this workout. Unlike outdoor running, which mostly targets the lower body muscles, jumping rope targets the muscle groups in your upper body as well.
The beauty of jogging is that you can perform this activity at any time. By keeping your running shoes in a duffel bag or near the door, you can always be ready to explore the nature. Even short bouts of running is good for pumping oxygen-rich blood to your heart, clearing your head and calming your senses. You can always make time to sneak in a jog, even during travel.
However, jogging may not be the best exercise option for those with muscle strains and joint pain. Specialized outdoor ellipticals could be more beneficial. Not only does modern elliptical help in maintaining a natural upright position (which could get difficult if you plan to jog with an injury), it has a low impact on the joints.
Hiking results in improved cardiovascular fitness by keeping your lungs in tip-top shape. Plus, it gives you stronger thighs and a firmer rear. Think of it as a game that’s a cross between badminton and tennis, without any walls or nets involved. The results are similar – toned legs, stronger arms and back, and improved hand-eye coordination. You might even spot some furry friends along the way.
Pace your hikes to enjoy the perks of nature. Build strength and endurance gradually before taking on a more challenging terrain or hills. For safety, avoid brushing yourself against foliage, and do not go hiking without company in the dark.
Stand-up Paddle Boarding or Kayaking
While participants of paddle boarding may look calm while paddling across water, paddling, especially when standing up, engages a lot of muscle groups, especially ab muscles which are responsible for maintaining balance on the board.
If you don’t like stand-up paddling, you can still get out in open water with a self-propelled boat to feel the summer breeze in your hair, while sneaking in a calorie-burning workout at the same time by paddling a kayak.