Bring your Workout Outdoors!
It’s uncharacteristically mild, sunny and bright for the first few months of the year in Canada and bringing your workout outside to experience it can provide lots of different health benefits for your mental and overall well-being. I once read a study that the primary activity that the most people partake in outside is dog walking. However, there are so many great benefits for humans outside too!
A study from California Pacific Orthopedic and Sports Medicine found that outdoor exercisers lost an average of 7.43 pounds and 6.17 percent of body fat in eight weeks which is a drastic change for only a couple months. However, the study didn’t account for less measurable but equally important factors like mental health variables or feelings of wellness. With lockdown easing after a strict couple months, most of us likely haven’t been getting enough time outside. Leaving your apartment or lockdown space is essential to your mental health, even if it’s just to the park or lake. Your vitamin D supply improves greatly with a touch of sun. It can also help restore focus, help with symptoms of Seasonal Affective Disorder and provide immune boosting benefits. I highly suggest you incorporate outdoor workouts into your routine!
The city offers parks, stairs, trails and tracks for cardio, many of them are open and available for use with proper social distancing protocols. However, you can also take strength training outside.
Some great exercises to try outside include:
Side Leap: Targets inner thighs, quads, calves and glutes.
Park-Bench Dip: Targets triceps, shoulders and core.
Park-Bench Push-Up: Targets chest, biceps, triceps, shoulders and core.
Tightrope Walk: Targets calves, quads and core.
Side Shuffle: Targets glutes, inner and outer thighs and quads.
Side Step: Targets core, obliques, glutes, upper back and shoulders.
Step-Up: Targets quads, hamstrings and glutes.
Hanging Crunch: Targets abs and obliques.
Slalom Jump: Targets glutes, hamstrings and quads.
Planks: Targets glutes, lower back, abs and core.
If you just want to go out and get your workout done without thinking through or remembering a formal routine, you can try anything in my library free for the next two weeks without any commitment.