I don’t know about you, but the second summer gets here, I want to be outside all. The. Time. And in our current pandemic climate, getting outside has been a lifeline of sorts to “normal” things. It enables us to be social, get some Vitamin D — and if you have a dog, it thrills your four-legged friend to bits. (Just ask Tuni.) Getting outside also disrupts a workout routine in the most wonderful way, because it opens the door for more variety of movement. (And gets you away from a screen!)
Summer is the best time for low-impact workouts — and don’t let the term ‘low-impact’ make you think that you aren’t getting anything out it. A workout doesn’t have to be go big or home to be effective or fun. Low-impact exercises are easy on the joints and give your body a chance to move without strain. Here are some of my favourite low-impact activities for summer.
I love walking — so much so that I dedicated a blog post to it. Particularly now that I have a dog. Getting your step on is super easy on your joints, increases your base cardio, and helps clear your head. Walk to dinner with friends, consider parking further away from your destination, or schedule walking breaks with your pup. Or even better, reach out to a friend to go for a walking date. Be sure to have comfortable, supportive walking shoes, and always have a bottle of water handy.
Clients are always asking me about how to get more core strength. While there’s no one way to do this, paddleboarding is near the top of the list. It doesn’t look like hard work but your body will argue that the morning after. Not only will you feel your core muscles, but you’ll also feel all your muscles. Paddleboarding is also an excellent way to enhance joint stability and sneakily build stamina.
While I’m not a super avid swimmer, I always appreciate how my body feels after slicing through the water for some laps. Even if I just floated or splashed around for a while. Swimming is an excellent way to tone muscles and build strength without putting too much strain on the body. An additional benefit includes increased lung and respiratory health, and pool time is often recommended as physical therapy for injuries. Visit your local pool or jump in the lake this summer!
Get from A to B or play tourist on a bicycle. Cycling is an awesome lower body and cardio workout. Pedalling tones your legs and helps keep your upper respiratory tract in tip-top shape. If you have a basket, it’s also a fun way to grocery shop or get out and about with a small dog. (Tuni loves my bike basket.) Cycling also saves some time and a half hour-ish bike ride can burn 200-250 calories. This means you’ll get somewhere quicker, work your legs, and get to enjoy a cheeky glass of patio wine.
Bring your mat outside
Strength training, yoga and Pilates are great low-impact workouts. If you have a patio or a nice green space near you, consider bringing your mat, band, and some free weights outside to soak up some sun while you enjoy your regular morning workout. Really, you can bring your mat anywhere, can’t you?
No matter what you choose, remember to stay hydrated!
What low-impact workouts will you enjoy this summer? Be sure to tag me @jennamayefitness on your Instagram posts and stories! And as always, I’m always here to support you — feel free to reach out any time or check out my blog for workout and nutrition inspo.