Headed to the lake for vacation? The beach? The mountains? A cruise? Whatever your destination, you can still get your daily 30 minutes in, and we can help. Read on for a roundup of perfect workouts for when you’re on the go — wherever you are.
1. Best Beach Workouts
If you’re yearning for the feel of the ocean breeze in your hair and the sand under your toes, then a beach getaway is probably on your vacation plans for this summer. Want to get in a workout when you’re there? We’ve got great news for you. One of the best resources you can find for amping up your workout can be found at the beach. We’re talking about sand.
In particular, fitness experts recommend yoga and running as effective sand-based workouts. Of the former, yoga and fitness instructor Reese Ryzewski told The NWI Times, “The sand is on different levels, and you have to adjust to that difference, which brings a new element to the pose. It also removes the issue of the hard surface on your knees. When you kneel on your mat laid over the sand, your joints are cushioned. The heat from the sand is also relaxing to the muscles.”
Running in the sand is easier on the joints than on harder surfaces. Plus, said fitness instructor Julia Burns, “Running through sand also forces you to use a fuller range of motion. Sand running requires your body to move through a full range of motion, which stretches your muscles more than running on the pavement. You will burn up to 1.6 times as many calories for that extra effort.”
Then, of course, there’s the classic oceanfront workout: beach volleyball.
2. Best Lake Workouts
Can’t make it to the pool to get your laps in this while you’re away? No worries, the lake is an amazing alternative. Enthuses Wild Swimming of the many benefits of swimming in natural waters like lakes, “All wild-dippers know the natural endorphin high that raises mood, elates the senses, and creates an addictive urge to dive back in. However the world seemed before a swim, it looks fantastic afterwards.”
While Ryzewski echoes the fitness-enhancing potential of lake swims, he also takes a cautious approach. “You have to be very careful in the lake,” he says. “There are drop-offs and riptides. It’s really for strong swimmers, because you have to deal with the dangers of the lake.”
Not sure your swimming skills are up to the task? Sign Up for an Aquatic Session to strengthen your skills (and confidence) today.
3. Best Mountain Workout
If you’re escaping to the mountains, you have yet another opportunity to use your surroundings to step up your workout. Both hiking and mountain biking in the great outdoors benefit body, mind, and soul. Whether you’re looking to strengthen your core, drop a few pounds, improve your balance, or boost your cardiovascular function, hiking and biking deliver.
Just keep in mind that both activities are very different in nature than they are on the treadmill and spin bike. Be sure to start slow and work your way up to uneven or hilly terrain.
Experts also recommend using poles when hiking, which can be used to propel you forward, giving your upper body a stronger workout in the process.
4. Best Cruise Workout
Thinking about kicking your workout routine in lieu of kicking back with cocktails on your cruise vacation? While this may sound appealing in the short run, you’re likely to regret it once you’ve disembarked and returned to reality. But when was the last time you regretted making time to exercise? Many cruises offer a broad range of fitness classes, including everything from Pilates to water aerobics. Additionally, activities ranging from rock climbing to surfing are a great way to burn calories. Some cruises even have ice skating rinks and obstacle course-style features.
Even doing a few laps around the deck can have huge benefits, particularly if you turn your usual stroll into an uber-efficient HIIT workout by alternating between three minutes of fast walking and three minutes of slow walking.
Taking a vacation doesn’t have to mean taking a vacation from your workout routine. After all, imagine how fabulous it will feel to return home one step closer to achieving your fitness goals!