7 ways to make this your summer of fitness

April 25, 2016 | by Ken Miller
Categories: Healthy Driven Life

When summer hits, everything seems to slow down a bit.

As the days lengthen and sunshine becomes a staple, it’s easy to let your fitness routine slip away. Resist! It’s important to continue with a routine, even a modified one, in order to avoid regression through the summer months.

There are many ways to accomplish this. Take a look at some simple, effective, methods to meet your summer fitness goals.

Smarter time spent in the gym

As outdoor obligations pick up during the summer, take advantage of the time you can spend in the gym.

  • Focus on strength training. Build muscle while you’re in the gym. Outdoor activities like walking, or even yardwork, have a significant cardiovascular benefit and could supplement or replace your normal cardiovascular routine.
  • Perform compound (multi-joint) exercises at the gym. Think squats, deadlifts, lunges, pushups, pullups, rows and overhead presses. These movements have a greater demand on larger muscle groups.
  • Cut down on rest periods. This is an issue many people struggle with. It is important that you get the maximum amount of work done with the time you spend. Bring a stopwatch to make sure you’re resting for a prescribed amount of time between exercises.
Enjoy the weather

Now that it’s warm outside, there are a few small changes that can make a big difference for your summer fitness goals.

  • Go on longer walks if you take them regularly. Warmer weather makes this more enjoyable. Try going farther than you usually do in the same amount of time or maintain your usual pace for a longer time.
  • Golfing? Walk instead of taking a cart. The added cardiovascular benefit from walking will start to add up.
  • Use yardwork to maximize your fitness goals. Instead of walking behind a self-propelled lawnmower, try pushing it manually to cut your grass. Use a broom instead of a leaf blower. Focus on proper form when squatting down for garden work or lifting to move heavy loads like soil to avoid injuring your low back.
  • Take your training outdoors. Instead of sweating in your gym, run outside and use outdoor equipment for strength training exercises. Use park benches for pushups, step ups, box squats and dips. Many parks also have outdoor pull up stations or weight equipment; take full advantage.

No matter how you work in your summer fitness, the important thing is to continue the exercise. What's your go-to summer fitness activity? Share it in the comments!

If you have any questions or are looking to jump-start your routine, contact a personal trainer or ask any of the fitness specialists at either of the Edward-Elmhurst Health & Fitness locations.

Are you up for something different? Take the Healthy Driven Challenge!


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