When the sun comes out it is time to get active. If you live in a region that dips to blustery temperatures of winter snow and blizzards, you may have kept yourself holed up in your home for months. Likewise, if you live in a place that is sunny all year but that holiday diet didn’t stop after the holidays, it’s time to make some changes. Regardless of the reason, summer weather provides an excellent opportunity to enjoy the outdoors and take in that beautiful summer breeze while getting you in shape. Here are a few ideas to get you out and get you moving.
When it comes to exercise, there’s nothing more basic than walking—basic doesn’t mean it’s not beneficial. Walking increases blood circulation, provides healthy movement of the joints, and keeps your brain active. If you are able, try taking a stroll around your block. You don’t have to stop there; the early summer is typically a time when your environment is the prettiest. Take a brisk walk around the local park or find a trail somewhere in your vicinity that allows you to explore the world around you. Walk down the boardwalk over the beach, through the flower fields, or through any nature that exists around you. Perhaps you live in the heart of the city; in the case you have the advantage of the beautiful sunny streets and people watching as the passersby don the latest in their summer clothes. For an extra workout, walk with weights attached to your ankles and wrists.
Hiking is walking but in variable terrain outdoors. Not only does it increase circulation and flex joints, but it also builds more strength by making the muscles adapt to the changing terrain. Hikers love the outdoors and take advantage of the favorable time of year to take the path less traveled. Step out of your metropolitan city or suburb and you might find a wilderness you have never seen or experienced. Take advantage of this time of year to see what your state park or national park has to offer or take a road trip to a park with your friends or family and do a little hiking and camping there. Make sure you invest in the right hiking gear, such as hiking boots and other gear from REI.com. For an added challenge, take a low-impact backpacking trip that requires you to carry low amounts of weight.
Beach volleyball is a classic and competitive sport that allows you to enjoy the sun while remaining very active. Volleyball is a full body workout; it engages your core, quads, calves, back and arms. The variability of the workout confuses the muscles so it keeps them active well after the workout is finished. It’s an excellent sport for those who want to try something new and hang out with friends.
Intramural Softball/ Baseball
Summer generally signals the beginning of intramural season. Get invested in your company’s intramural teams. If your job doesn’t offer this option, try researching your local community’s opportunities for team sports. Intramurals are a great way to make friends while getting your body in shape. If you join a team sport like baseball, make sure you have the right gear. You don’t have to empty your wallet; look for online gear like wood bats from Baseball Monkey to get high-quality equipment without breaking the bank.
Swimming and other watersports are fun ways of staying cool and staying active. Anyone of any level is welcome to try swimming. Swimming is a low impact sport that allows you to build strength without putting excess weight on your joints. If you have arthritis or other injuries, water-based exercise is an excellent way to strengthen your muscles and joints without putting excess pressure on them. If you are looking for something more advanced, try taking swim classes or join a water polo team.
Summer is just around the corner, so take advantage of the good weather while you can. Soak up the vitamin D and get yourself motivated by trying one or all of these outdoor activities.