Summer is finally here, and that means that we’re all in the best shape of our lives, right? For some of us, maybe not so much, but that doesn’t mean that we need to hole ourselves up in a gym to get a great workout in. And because the season gives way to warmer temps and clearer skies, there are so many more opportunities to get your sweat on in the great outdoors. Whether on the sand, in the water or on that green, green grass, we’ve got some of the outdoor exercises that will help burn off those calories and allow you to take advantage of (what is, in our opinion) the best season of the year. It’s time to get physical.
Celebs from Kate Hudson to Alessandra Ambrosio and Nikki Reed have all been snapped stand-up paddleboarding, and that’s because it’s not only fun (with or without a partner), but it’s also a great calorie-burner. A study done by The American Council on Exercise found that the rowing motion and need to balance the board through calming waters can definitely activate your core muscles. Shape even reported that you can work the obliques even more by twisting from core to core with every stroke. We're in.
It's time to be one with nature. Research your area's local trails and grab a buddy, some comfortable clothes and shoes, a bottle of water, and take in the scenery that your town's parks and woodlands have to offer. Hiking is not only a great way to catch up with friends and do some exploring, but Women’s Health says, if done right (i.e. walking downhill slow and uphill fast for a higher caloric burn), you can get more fit in the process. It’s a total win-win.
Whether you enjoy Hatha (slow-moving) or Vinyasa (quick-moving) yoga, it’s time to take those poses (and your mat) outside. There’s no reason to be stuck indoors when you can be enjoying the benefits of all the poses mixed with copious amounts of vitamin D. And don’t be worried about not remembering what positions to do or what comes next. There are a ton of great apps that were recently rounded up by Healthline.com like Pocket Yoga (it shows you step-by-step instructions on how to perform each pose while breathing and even lets you incorporate your own music) and 5-Minute Yoga (for beginners) that allow you to take yoga, literally, wherever you go.
This may come as a no-brainer, but swimming not only is an ideal way to cool-off during the hot summer months, but it’s an easy way to get the heart-rate up. In fact, in a study published by Harvard, a 125-pound person can burn upwards of 300 calories just from treading water (vigorously) for 30 minutes. So hop in the pool or the ocean and get yourself over to the deep end!