Ten Ways to Take Your Workout Outdoors for the Summer

Summer’s here, the weather’s great and you want to enjoy being outdoors. So here’s TheSavvyGal’s take on how best to get a great workout and enjoy the sun (responsibly, with sunblock slathered on, of course). Here are some tips of how to mix up your summer workout and engage both your mind and your body.

The calorie burn listed is an approximation for a 150 lb person who is moderately active; it is a guideline and should not be considered an absolute number. Your results are determined by the effort you put in! Instead of a leisurely day of sunbathing, ramp things up this summer and get your tan while burning some serious calories.

Sand running — 650 calories per hour

Take your cardio to the beach. Running in sand is guaranteed to burn 20 to 50 percent more calories than running on asphalt or grass. Start first by running on the water’s edge where the sand is more packed, which provides you with a better grip and then work your way up to running in the loose dry sand, which packs a bigger punch. You reduce the chance of injury, get a terrific strength and resistance workout, strengthen your core muscles and build great abs, not to mention increase your lung capacity.

Surfing — 200 calories per hour

Zip up and make like a seal! Surfing provides a great full body workout. Paddling helps develop your arms, jumping up onto the board to catch a wave engages your core as well as your glutes and upper leg muscles as they work to support you and keep you standing on your board.

Kayaking — 400 calories per hour

Water’s too cold? Well, stay on it, instead of in it with a sit on-top kayak. Kayaking provides an excellent cardio and upper body workout.

Play some Frisbee — 200 calories per hour

Take Rover to the beach and throw some Frisbee. Don’t have anyone to play with, play “Frisbee Golf” with yourself — mark a spot on the beach, throw the Frisbee to the spot, then run/walk to it; find another spot to throw it to, then run to it and so on. This works great in a park and also works better with a foursome, just like Golf!

Beach volleyball — 560 calories per hour

Beach volleyball gives you a great full body workout. All you need is a net, volleyball and one other person to partner up with and you’ve got yourself a pick up game at the beach!

Water aerobics — 450 to 700 calories per hour

Love the water but not sure about what’s floating out there? Well, check out your local YMCA or Aquatic Center and catch a water aerobics class. Water aerobics provide a great muscular, flexibility and cardiovascular workout. Next time you’re in the pool, try spot jogging!! Aside from being a great workout, water-based aerobics and exercises are gentle on your joints, making it ideal for rehabilitation from injury as well as for those with arthritic or problematic joints.

Hiking — 400 plus calories per hour depending on difficulty

The best thing about hiking is you need nothing more than the desire to be out in the open, a good pair of shoes, preferably specific for hiking and a water bottle! Don’t forget the sunblock though! There’s nothing more exhilarating than a panoramic on a clear day from a 1000 ft. elevation! (In California and prefer the mountains to the ocean, no problem, try out one of the hundreds of trails in the Santa Monica Mountains. Here you’ll find maps, descriptions and photographs of local trails for hiking and biking.)

Mountain or road biking – 500 plus calories per hour depending on difficulty

Biking not only gives you a cardiovascular workout, but also works all the major muscle groups (no, not just the legs). You end up using your arms, shoulders, core, back, neck, etc. Biking also is easier on the joints than running tends to be. It’s not a cheap sport, but if you’re so inclined check out one of your many local bike stores to get outfitted.

Rollerblading or inline skating — 500 calories per hour

Rollerblading combines the pleasure of a stroll with the speed of a bike and the muscle toning effects of a good aerobic and core workout. Skating is an excellent form of resistance training and helps work the muscles of your upper legs, glutes, hips and lower back. Throw in some arm motion and you’ve got yourself a full body workout. Rollerblading also has the added benefit of honing your reflexes while you dodge pedestrians, cars and bikes.

Walking or Nordic walking — 200 to 400 calories per hour

The biggest benefit of walking is no extra equipment is required, and it takes no time to head out the door for a walk. There’s nothing to prepare for. It’s a highly social activity and allows for good “girlfriend” time. Next time, instead of meeting at your local coffee shop for a 700-calorie-full-of-fat-coffee drink, go for a walk and indulge in ice cold water or Gatorade!

Nordic walking is a low stress exercise using walking poles to engage the legs and upper body in a total body workout. The best thing about it is it increases your heart rate and caloric burn without you feeling like you’re working any harder. However aside from just your legs you’re using your abs, arms, shoulders, upper chest and back muscles as you swing your pole-wielding arms back and forth. Nordic walking is said to improve posture as well.

Whatever your choice, just make sure you get out there and enjoy the summer weather and burn some calories while you do it! Go ahead CHANGE, CHALLENGE, CONFUSE yourself!

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