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Hate the Gym? There are Alternatives! by Jordan Rubin
If the thought of going to the gym makes you cringe, fear not. You can still get a great workout in by using the outdoors or your home. Whatever your reason may be – traffic, the machines are packed, you feel uncomfortable lifting among the buff clientele; we’ll give you all the tools you need to skip the gym for a day, or longer, and still get a great body.
Exploring the Great Outdoors
Your options outside are only limited by your imagination. From the simplest form of exercise, walking, to the more complex, kayaking or rock climbing, there are a million different activities you can do outside. And, as a bonus, you will typically burn more calories and work more muscles when you exercise outside. When you hop on a treadmill, you know your feet will land on even ground (and you can choose flat ground as well), as the surface beneath you keeps revolving. When you run outdoors, the ground is rarely even, or flat, so you have additional challenges to overcome. These challenges require the use of additional muscle groups (for stability) and increase your calorie burn. So let’s take a look at some of forms of outdoor exercise:
Great for anyone, requires no equipment and works the major muscle groups in your legs. If running isn’t your thing, at least try to intersperse your fast-paced walking routine with some jogging. You’ll increase your total calories burned and bump up your cardiovascular benefits.
Great for anyone who doesn’t have joint problems or excessive weight they are carrying. If you aren’t a seasoned runner, start slowly and try running for just 5-10 minutes at a time at first. Running burns a ton of calories and works the major muscle groups in your legs.
Why sit on a stationary bike staring at the people around you when you could be listening to birds and watching squirrels? Try road or mountain biking (in safe areas and away from traffic when possible). If you don’t currently own a bike but think you want to take up this form of activity, hit your local bike shop and rent a bike for a day. While you are there, ask about groups in town to cycle with.
Water sports –
Take your kids to the pool (chlorine-free is optimal), lake or beach and they’ll love you. Get in there yourself and get your heart-rate pumping and your body will love you too. Try swimming laps, running in the water, and treading water in the pool or body boarding in the ocean.
Hiking trails are not only serene; they challenge your thighs, butt, calves and hamstrings. Grab a friend and hit the local trails for an enjoyable afternoon.
Working out at home is the epitome of convenience. As soon as you get home from work and put dinner on the stove, you can start doing pushups while you wait for your food to cook. Doing aerobic work pretty much requires a stationary bike, treadmill or elliptical machine unless you pull out the old standard – a jump rope, or pop in one of thousands of exercise videos on the market, I recommend Functional Fitness. As for stretching and strengthening, again, you can choose from myriad videos (yoga, Pilates and more), buy weight machines, use your own body’s resistance, or use exercise bands.
Using Your Body for Resistance
You can do a number of exercises and tone your muscles just by using your bodyweight for resistance. Push-ups (or partial push-ups), stomach crunches, squats, lunges, triceps dips and pull-ups can all be done at home (pull-ups require a bar you mount in a door). Think creatively. If you add dumbbells, now you can also do bicep curls, additional chest exercises and more. For additional ideas on workouts from home try using a resistance band or a stability ball.
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|Statements on this site have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease, but are dietary supplements intended solely for nutritional use. Aug 21 2017|