by Matt Weik
Are you planning a vacation but know you’ll come home at least 10 pounds heavier than when you left? You’re not alone. Vacation is a time to relax, unwind, and enjoy yourself. Unfortunately, many people go to the extreme, and it causes them to gain a significant amount of weight. Little did they know, workouts at the beach can keep them fit during their vacation.
Truthfully, this article can fall under the umbrella of the beach, the lake, a pond, or just about anywhere there is a body of water. But for the sake of this article, we’re going to talk specifically about workouts at the beach and how you can utilize them to stay on top of your fitness and prevent yourself from feeling like a beached whale as you drive home from vacation wondering why your pants feel like a vice around your waist.
Let’s look at some workouts at the beach and various exercises you can engage in while on vacation that won’t even feel like you’re working out at all due to how much fun you’ll have.
Disclaimer: You should always speak to your doctor before engaging in any exercise program, which includes workouts at the beach to ensure you are healthy enough to do so.
Workouts at the Beach Are Way Better Than the Gym
For starters, one of the best things about workouts at the beach is that you’re… at the beach — duh. Wouldn’t it be nice to have the atmosphere and view of the beach while at the gym? It doesn’t sound all that bad, right? Well, if you’re at the beach, why not enjoy yourself with some exercise that won’t even feel like exercise?
Below are some things you can do while on vacation to help you burn calories, stimulate the muscles, and make for some fun and memorable workouts at the beach.
1. Swim in the Ocean
One of the best things you can do if you have banged-up joints is swim in the ocean. The water provides resistance and will help get your heart rate up and burn calories. Best of all, the water allows such an exercise to be low impact, which can protect the joints from repetitive pounding.
Swimming is one of the best workouts at the beach that you can engage in as it works the whole body (assuming you know how to swim). Clearly, if you don’t know how to swim, you may want to sit this one out and move on to another one of the workouts at the beach that are mentioned below. Best of all, when you get tired, you can merely float on your back and relax.
2. Walk or Jog in the Water
Another one of the great workouts at the beach that you can engage in is walking or jogging in the water. The water will provide you with some resistance to make your workout challenging while also being friendly on your joints if you have issues with your ankles, knees, or hips.
If you want to kick things up a notch, keep your hands/arms in the water as your walk or jog and move them through the water to add some extra resistance and work the upper body a little while in the process.
3. Do Bodyweight Exercises in the Sand
If you’ve never worked out in the sand, you’re truly missing out. Not only do you get the amazing atmosphere of the beach with all the sounds, but you can get in a fantastic full-body workout while staring at the ocean.
Think of things like push-ups, sit-ups, planks, lunges, squats, calf raises, close-grip push-ups, and any bodyweight exercise you want to add to your routine. The atmosphere alone will be enough to take your mind off your workouts at the beach and allow you to work up a good sweat session using only your body weight.
4. Go for a Walk on the Beach or Boardwalk
Do you like cardio? Well, even if you don’t, you still need to get it in. Those who dread cardio may find going for a walk on the beach or the boardwalk to be a completely different experience than walking on the street or on a treadmill. If you’re a people-watcher (it’s always entertaining), this will be the ultimate experience, and your ticket is punched for the show.
Walking on the beach or boardwalk allows you to take in the views, watch people, and take your mind off your cardio workout. It should be noted that if you are not strong-willed, walking on the boardwalk may not be ideal as you’re going to pass by boardwalk fries, funnel cakes, pizza, ice cream, and just about everything that looks and smells terrific to end your walk early. Walking on the beach is probably your best bet if that’s the case.
5. Try Yoga or Pilates in the Sand
Are you trying to relax on vacation while still getting in your workouts? Workouts on the beach can be part of your daily activities by adding yoga or Pilates. Not only do you get the physical benefits from such workouts at the beach, but you get the mental aspects as well.
Many people play calming sounds in the background while doing yoga or Pilates. You get to actually be at the beach (for real) and hear those calming noises. Take it all in to help clear your mind and strengthen your body by including these workouts at the beach while you are on vacation.
6. Rent a Kayak or Canoe
Row, row, row your boat… Ok, not the same thing, but play along. Think outside the box with your workouts at the beach. Just because you have sand and surf doesn’t mean you can’t toss yourself in a dingy and start rowing away the calories.
If you want to enjoy a different experience on vacation, rent a kayak or canoe and push that puppy out into the water and hop in. You’ll not only get in a great cardio workout, but you’ll also notice it’s an excellent upper body workout as well rowing around in the water. You also get to take in all the sights, not to mention looking down into the water to see all the various forms of life that live in the water (just cross your fingers that you don’t see Jaws when looking down).