5 Summer Workouts That Work

July 11, 2011

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water aerobicsWelcome to summer, and the time for a fresh summer workout. Nice weather and lots of outdoor activities to choose from make being active easy compared to the cold winter months.

That said, getting active is all about getting started so, in that spirit, here are some of my top summer fitness tips:

Join a Walking Club: Walking clubs and events are a favorite summer workout activity in many cities. Check around and see if there are any walk/runs scheduled in your area. These low-key walks aren???t about being the fastest, or even necessarily about finishing, and you???re likely to see folks of all ages, shapes, sizes, and fitness levels participating, which can me less intimidating than marathons, for example. Not only are these fun walks a great way to get out and enjoy new scenery, they???re also a great place to find possible walking buddies for future excursions.

Hit the Pool: While you???re at it, have a look at what???s going on at the local pool when seeking a summer workout. Many facilities offer fitness classes like water aerobics and the like, which are a perfect fit for those with back pain, arthritis, or trouble exercising ???on land.??? Water not only keeps you cool while you work out, it also helps offset the effects of gravity and provides gentle resistance while burning a surprisingly high number of calories. For this reason, walking in a pool is another good summer fitness tip and helps break up the same-old, same-old summer workout routine for those who like to walk.

Go Paddleboarding: A summer workout activity several of my patients have taken up recently is called paddleboarding. It???s similar to wakeboarding, but much easier. You stand on a specially designed board and then paddle along on calm water, such as a bay or lake. This summer workout option is great for building balance, gets you out on the water, and I am told is not difficult to master.

Take a Hike: Summertime is a great time to explore the great outdoors as a family or on your own. Combine hiking with camping (but watch out for unhealthy camping food choices) or just plan a day hike. Chances are there are beautiful sights to see not too far from where you live, or make it an adventure and travel to a location you???ve always wanted to visit but haven???t yet. (Grand Canyon, anyone?)

Team Up: Team sports like softball, baseball, and soccer provide more great summer workout opportunities. For those who don???t like to exercise alone or who have a competitive drive, these summer workout activities can be great motivators to get and stay active. Scheduled practices also help make sure you???re doing so on a regular basis. Seek out a sport that fits your fitness level and interest so that you???re sure to enjoy being part of a team.

Whatever you do this summer, make sure you???re making staying active a priority. A little movement every day is better than a one-time attempt, so plan to get started and stick with it. Incorporating some summer fitness tips into your routine means that by summer???s end, you are sure to see a big improvement in your fitness level, energy, stamina, reduced stress, better sleep, and many more health benefits associated with an active lifestyle. Enjoy!

Dr. Michael Kaplan

Founder and Chief Medical Officer

The Center for Medical Weight Loss

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