Guru Columns

New Ways To Exercise Outdoors

Summer is finally here and the sunshine and warmer temperatures have many of us motivated and excited to be more active. We all know the many ways to exercise in the summer such as running, biking, swimming, rollerblading or kayaking.

But this summer, I challenge you to get active in some way you’ve never tried before. If you can give yourself more ways to enjoy the outdoors and exercise at the same time, you’ll be more likely to turn physical activity into an even bigger part of your lifestyle.

So here are just a few untraditional ways to exercise outdoors:

  • Trail running is fun and different and an activity many people never consider. When we think of walking or jogging, we usually default to a paved trail, a route around our home or our local high school track. But our area has so many fun trails to enjoy. Trail running is a great way to get your cardio in while exploring and enjoying nature. You don’t need wide open pavement to walk or jog and hitting a dirt path with roots and rocks can be a fun and different experience.
  • Playground workouts can also be a fun way to improve your fitness. Your children shouldn’t be the only ones getting exercise during your time at the park. There are many creative exercises to do with playground equipment such as pushups on a low bar, hanging leg raises on monkey bars, or step-ups on stairs. If you search the Internet, you can find a lot of fun ways to get active on the playground. Or, you could simply follow your kids around. Sliding down a slide and climbing back up to do it again is a functional way to be active and it’s certainly better than sitting on the park bench.
  • Football drills shouldn’t just be for players. Doing body weight exercises that keep you moving in all directions and get you winded are good for your health. You can find a patch of grass and do things to burn calories and strengthen your body. Examples are shuffles, jumping jacks, tire drills (mimicking the movement with no tires necessary) or bear crawls.

Although many of us spend more time outdoors in the summer, we may not be as active as we could be. Playing like a child or training like an athlete are ways to keep your body young.

So don’t put rules or limitations on how you define exercise or physical activity. Get outside and enjoy summer while keeping yourself fit!

Published by The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.