In this week’s article I help those who find it hard to always show up to the gym whether the reason be you just don’t like being indoor feeling like a trapped mice in a maze having to navigate through a busy gym on a weekday. Heck if you step into any gym at 5:30pm on a weekday you will see a row of people running on treadmills that automatically reminds you of hamsters running on a wheel. Which is actually not motivating what so ever and if you are like me you actually enjoy the outdoors and getting active whenever you can. What you will take away from this article is eight different activities you can regularly do to help make getting fit fun, enjoyable and actually rewarding for you. As with being able to achieve the physique and health levels you desire it will require consistency. If you are able to do an activity you enjoy you will then more likely make it a routine.
8 activities to make outdoor training fun
- Join a sports team
- Not a team person then do a solo sport like running
- Sign up & prepare for an obstacle course
- Bodyweight exercises (barstars as an example)
- Outdoor treks (hiking or kayaking)
- Outdoor circuits (use resistance bands)
Now If training alone outdoors is not your kind of thing and you enjoy having company than a boot camp is a great way to be a part of a community that trains together and as you may know that people who train together, get fit together. Bootcamps also help keep you accountable through the different activities and exercises which usually require a partners help to complete. There is nothing worse than letting someone down which is why the accountability factor that comes with training in a group is great to help take your fitness to another level. Bootcamps are usually relatively cheap as you are not the only person being trained by the instructor so if price is a concern for you when hiring a personal trainer than your best is to join a boot camp on average a boot camp class is around $10 per session which is not too bad.
Join a sports team
Joining a sports team is great for anyone who grew up playing a particular game and still wants to keep fit while playing a game they enjoyed as a child. Also when you play a sport you don’t necessary feel like you are doing a workout as you are enjoying it, well that’s how I feel when playing a game of soccer. Despite not feeling like I am doing a workout I still burn more calories than I would slugging out a gym workout followed by cardio on the treadmill. The great thing about team sports is that you work in a unit and adopt certain principles that require you to follow a strategy which in the end is to achieve an end goal which in most cases is to win a championship.
Team sports are not your thing then don’t worry you can avoid having a team mate let you down and go at it solo. You can participate in any individual sport such as boxing, MMA, running, kayaking, tennis or whatever is of interest to you where you do not need a another person who can let you down.
Sign up & prepare for an obstacle course
There is nothing that compare to an outdoor obstacle race. You get muddy, dirty, wet and tested to your limits and for many there is no better feeling than competing in one. Obstacle courses like the tough mudder in Sydney, Australia attract plenty of people to the event. Now this is a great chance if you prefer to train outdoor to use an obstacle course as a goal to help you train and prepare for.
Bodyweight/resistance band exercises
Don’t have access to a gym or just hate training indoors then not to worry you can always utilise your surroundings outdoors like monkey bars to do pull ups and muscle ups or a bench to do seated dips and box jumps. You really could mimic the same movement you do with a barbell with any outdoor accessories like resistance bands and a skipping rope. If you are a beginner and cannot think of any other exercises to do using your bodyweight even with resistance bands all you need to do is jump on YouTube and type in callisthenic workouts or a channel like bar stars to get visibility into what the human body can do on a monkey bar.
A great way to train your cardiovascular endurance and anaerobic power is through cycling. All you need is a bike and visible clothing if you decide to cycle on the road and obstruct every car like all good cyclists do. I actually prefer to cycle on the footpath as I feel it is more safer but if you decide to adopt cycling and do it on a regular basis just make sure that you wear the right protective gear required for you to physically push yourself while ensuring that you are as safe as possible especially if something were to occur when you are pedalling at a high speed.
Outdoor treks (hiking or kayaking)
Nothing more outdoors than going on a hike which will help you burn plenty of calories while allowing you to view the beautiful outdoors your country has to offer. Hiking and other outdoor activities like kayaking are similar to weight bearing exercises which require you to work against resistance. You can also use hiking as a way to clear your mind and forget about any worries you may have in your life or on some occasions I use it to think of a solution to a problem I may be facing so it is a win-win. On a final note you can take some fantastic photos while hiking or kayaking so that can be another reason for you to do it.
Outdoor circuits are essentially tailored workouts similar to a bodybuilding styled routine where you do an array of exercises one after the other to help break a sweat and improve all areas of your fitness such as your strength, power, aerobic and anaerobic energy systems. If you like variety and you get easily bored doing the same routine. Then circuits are a great way to keep you entertained as you can always switch up the exercises you perform and the way you go about it such as using different rest time, sets and reps at each workout to ultimately test yourself.
Now here are just eight example of what you can do if you hate training inside a gym or indoors. There really is no excuse for you not being able to put in the work so you can feel, look and move better while enjoying the great outdoors. Heck I guess some people are not made like mice to go and run side by side other people on a treadmillJ. What you need to do now is decide which one of the eight outdoor activities or a combination of the few that you like and want to implement into your training program. That way you can actually plan out when, how and where you will train outside along with what equipment/accessories you may need to help you stay active in the sunshine. If you have trouble with being able to put together a program that you will enjoy which coincides with your goals then feel free to contact me for advice on how to structure your program. Finally if you enjoyed this article make sure you share it with someone in your network who may be in the same place as you and may be looking to improve their health and fitness levels as well.
John Nassif is a health and fitness professional who has worked with many professional athletes in the sports of football (soccer), athletics and Olympic weightlifting. He utilises what he preaches and loves to help people with their fitness & health goals so they can succeed in the gym/sports field and outside of it with their career and relationships.
You can contact John on the following below.