It’s summertime, and that means it is time to get outside and enjoy the sun, heat, and air. During the winter, it’s fine to head to the gym anytime you need to workout, but in the summer, we recommend getting in touch with Mother Nature for your workout.
According to a study published by Environmental Science and Technology, people who exercise outdoors have better energy levels, decreased tension, confusion, anger, and stress than those who workout inside. Plus, sweating in the sun gives you a chance to tan, breathe fresh air, and it’s free!
Below are some great outdoor workouts to get you started.
Mother Nature is incredible, and there’s no better way to see it than to get away from town and really dive into the wilderness. Hiking is a great way to leave your stress and worries behind while also getting in a killer workout. Hiking, when done correctly, is a great cardio and strength-training workout all rolled into one.
You’ve been on the stair climber; now imagine doing that for hours at a time as you climb the face of a mountain. Best yet, unlike a stair climber, hiking has a reward at the end. When you reach the peak, the view is ALWAYS worthwhile. It’s one of our favorite outdoor workouts of all time.
Whether you head to the beach, pool, or a nearby lake, swimming is one of the best total body workouts you can do. It’s low impact but high cardio, which is great for building your endurance, cardiovascular fitness, and muscle strength. We love swimming for burning calories and leaving us exhausted at the end of just thirty minutes.
The great thing about swimming is that it’s an all-in-one workout that engages your muscles from head to toe. You’ll notice stronger abs, sleeker legs, a more defined back, ripped arms, and more.
No matter if you’re hitting the track for some high-intensity interval training or you’re hitting the bleachers for back-to-back stair runs, stadium running is an insane workout. All you typically need is your local high school track and field to get in a major anaerobic workout that eats calories far more quickly than the treadmill.
We recommend taking advantage of the track as much as possible for this outdoor workout. Instead of just running boring laps, add in lateral hops, side shuffles, frog jumps, knee-highs, and ladder drills, all things you can’t do in the gym.
Hit the Court
From basketball to tennis, there are plenty of outdoor sports ready to help get you in shape. Running around with a basketball and shooting hoops with your friends, is effective high-intensity interval training (HIIT) that’s also fun. Tennis helps work your hand-eye coordination and endurance cardio, while volleyball is all about short bursts of intensive activity.
Stand-up Paddle Boarding (SUP) and rowing are two major whole-body workouts that are also a blast to do. With SUP, you stand on an oversized longboard and paddle to navigate across flat waters. It’s a workout that emphasizes core stability and control while giving you a killer workout. One pro surfer, Jodi Nelson, describes it as “hiking on water.”
As for rowing, it’s another total body workout that helps build your upper-body muscular endurance while also helping you increase your agility, coordination, and flexibility. It’s no wonder the rowing machine is so popular at the gym, but it’s an even better outdoor workout.
Next time you want to run, don’t hit the treadmill in the gym. Instead, put on your trail shoes and start running in the dirt and sand. Unlike street or treadmill running, trail running is an outdoor workout that has your body working harder with every step. Thanks to the textured and uneven terrain, you get a more intense workout that helps you burn more calories for the same amount of time.
We all remember jumping rope as kids. It was fun and a game. Now, as adults, we realize how difficult it is to jump rope and how much energy it expends. It’s why it’s such a great outdoor workout. Jumping rope can help you burn up to 1300 calories per hour. In fact, just ten minutes of jumping rope is the same as running an eight-minute mile. That’s a great outdoor workout!
Don’t be afraid to get creative with your outdoor workouts. Mud runs and obstacle course races are serious ways to test your fitness, both strength and endurance. And best yet, many obstacle courses are great for the entire family. On an obstacle course, you get to test your endurance cardio over a set number of miles while also testing your strength and agility.
What’s your favorite outdoor workout?