5 Ways to Take Your Workout Outside this Summer
Make the great outdoors your gym.
3 Min. Read | Home & Backyard
We are firm believers that more time out in nature increases your overall health and wellbeing, and there’s no arguing that staying active has the same positive effects — so why not combine the two? Chances are high that you already have a favorite outdoor spot and way to work out, but if you need some ideas, we’re here to fuel your imagination and help you kick off your best summer yet. Here are 5 ways to take your workout outside this summer.
1. Transform Your Backyard into an Outdoor Fitness Center
Make good use of the space that’s literally right outside your door by exercising in your own backyard. That sunny spot on your deck just became the perfect place to unroll your yoga mat for a morning sun salutation. The swimming pool that is merely steps away from your home can instantly be transformed into your lap pool. Hop on the trampoline and set the timer for 15 minutes. Or, really have some fun and try a HIIT workout on the jungle gym — it’s not only for the kids. Having a functional and accessible area that allows you to get your body moving and soak up the benefits of breathing in the fresh air can make a world of difference.
2. Bring Your Workout (and Friends) to a Favorite Outdoor Space
When it comes to workouts, the more you enjoy doing it, the more likely you are to be consistent. Try doing something out of doors that you truly enjoy, like planning a weekly bike ride with friends to a scenic spot, or a SUP session at golden hour (studies show that gazing at sunsets and being in or around water lowers stress and allow the brain to rest. Two for one!). If you haven’t thought about it before, consider what landscapes you’re most drawn to and go from there. Set yourself up for success by creating an experience that nourishes your body and mind so you’re excited to do it each and every time.
3. Sun Protection and How to Stay Safe on Hot Days
The effects of hot, humid and sunny weather can take a toll on our bodies much faster than we realize. On extremely hot days, stick to exercising outside in the morning and early evenings, and avoid the hottest parts of the day from high noon to 4 PM. Make sure you are hydrated, fueled with healthy nutrition and electrolytes. And don’t forget to cover up! Wear a hat, sunglasses, sunscreen, or better yet, invest in performance wear that has sun protection built right in, like our SunSmart apparel, which blocks ten times more harmful UV rays than a white cotton tee.
4. Wear Comfortable and Versatile Clothing
Workout clothing doesn’t have to be fancy or complicated. Its job is to enhance your experience by allowing you to feel comfortable and supported no matter what you’re doing. You’ll know it’s working when you forget it’s even there!
It’s safe to say everything you need to know about what to wear for a workout can be summarized in one quick and easy list:
- Always avoid cotton because it absorbs moisture and causes chafing.
- Synthetic materials like nylon and polyester are best. Not only do are they breathable, but quick-drying and moisture-wicking to keep you dry, comfy and regulate your body temperature.
- Look for pieces with spandex and nylon that provide two-way or four-way stretch for full range of motion.
- Wear lightweight layers for multiple outdoor and active pursuits.
5. Venture Off the Beaten Path
It turns out those actual bumps in the road aren’t just metaphors for overcoming obstacles. Walking or running on the uneven surfaces of a hiking trail challenge our balancing systems and activate the stabilizing muscles in our hips, knees, and ankle joints, which are all great ways to build strength and resilience in your body. Ditch the perfectly paved sidewalks and make hitting the trail a form of exercise instead! Your body will naturally have to work harder as you dodge roots, leap over boulders, or even scramble hand over foot up a steep portion on your way to the summit. While you’re out there, go on and do a little victory dance. These ideas might not work for you and that’s fine. The most important thing is to listen to your body and move at your own pace. Happy trails!