Summers used to be filled with sleeping in, hanging out with friends, no school, and some time for relaxing. As an adult, summers have changed.
They are now only slightly different than the rest of the year (particularly if you don’t have children). Even still, there is something fun about the summer months.
Depending on where you live, the weather is much nicer, and it feels like the time to do fun things. It is a great time for vacations, stay-cations, and sitting by the pool, but also a great time to change up your fitness plans.
The change in vibe the summer brings can help you decide what type of workout you want to do. Some of my favorites include:
- Yoga on the beach (or anywhere) is a great summer workout. It can be difficult at first, but it is quite relaxing and helps to calm your body down.
- Biking or hiking are great workouts this time of year.
- Try a few unconventional workouts. A few examples are barre, kickboxing, trampoline places (they may also have workout classes). Check out what types of things your town has and try them.
- Running or an evening walk outside can be a great option.
There are some great benefits to working out outside, too:
- It’s good for your mind and your body: Getting outdoors is associated with decreased confusion, anger, depression, and tension. Outdoor activities have been found to lower stress, and have a better effect on your mental health than going to the gym.
- Boosts your self-esteem: I don’t know about you, but working out at the gym can come with some pressure. If I am running on the treadmill and someone next to me is running faster, I may feel like I am not doing enough. When you are running outside, there is less pressure, and I frequently feel better about myself when I run outside.
- Soak up the sunshine: Overexposure in the sun can be harmful, but sunshine has benefits for your body — it can help improve sleep quality, improve immune function and increase endorphin production.Related: How sleep, yoga and meditation will help you focus
- It’s cheaper than a gym membership: This one is pretty self-explanatory. While I am a fan of having a gym membership, that may not be feasible (or desirable) for everyone.
Another benefit to running: you can do it anywhere. If you decide to go on a summer vacation, you can still include running and fitness in that trip.
Regardless of what type of workout, you should try to make it fun. In general, exercise is great when it is fun, but particularly in the summer when you can do it outside. Plus when it’s hot, it just feels good to sweat.
So, how can you make exercise fun? My suggestions:
- Turn up the tunes: Music can help your workouts seem shorter, but can also add some fun to them. I also listen to podcasts a lot. They make me not want to stop my workout, but I also feel like I learn things.
- Work out with a friend: This can be a great time to catch up with friends, but can also serve as some great motivation!
- Add some competition: whether you are writing down your benchmarks and competing with yourself, or competing against someone else, competition can be a fun way to motivate yourself to work a little harder.
- Give yourself a reward: Maybe it is a fun trip you want to take, or you want to treat yourself to a shopping trip. Knowing there is a reward once you meet your goals is fun!
Fitness is important for your mind and body, but find ways to make it fun and enjoyable this summer. We want you to work toward your goals, but enjoy it while you are doing it!