The Top 5 "Green" Workouts
In spring, the earth and all its beauty come alive. What better way to take advantage of that by getting out and exercising? The American Council On Exercise lists their favorite “green” workouts you can do this season--and beyond
A great way to escape the hectic city life and reduce stress is to hike in nature. Bring along some water and a snack for shorter hikes. Drink at least seven to ten ounces of water every 20 minutes, even in colder climates, to avoid dehydration. Insect repellent and sunscreen are also essential. Finally, pace yourself to enjoy nature. Build endurance and strength gradually before tackling some hills or a more challenging terrain.
Ride Your Bicycle There is no better way to explore your neighborhood, city, backcountry roads or local trails than from the vantage point of a bicycle. Bicycling is a great cardiovascular workout and will strengthen legs, glutes and core. Bike longer and you can burn enough calories to eat a sandwich, and have your cake too. For safety: Always wear a helmet, obey all traffic laws, use hand signals and use lights and a reflective vest when biking at dusk and dawn.
Get Wet Swimming laps offers a great full-body workout. Whether in the ocean or at a lake (or and even splashing around in the pool), swimming can be a great workout for young and old alike. Here are some workout ideas: Cup your hands and pull water away from you to build strength. Use a noodle, hand-held paddles or a kick board for kicking. Don’t forget to wear sunscreen when swimming outdoors
Go Skating Inline skating is a great activity in a public park or a specially designated spot. It’s also a terrific idea for a family workout because most kids love it. To prevent injuries, it is critical that adults and especially children wear helmets and protective gear on their wrists, knees and elbows.
Calm Your Mind Rolling out a yoga mat for outdoors downward-facing dog positions and sun salutations may be the ideal stress-reliever Many yoga studios are also taking their workouts outside. When life gets tough, slowing the mind without any distractions can make for a spiritual recovery.
Whatever outdoor activity gets you off the couch and into nature, remember to stay safe, hydrated and to protect your skin with sunscreen. For additional workout ideas and step-by-step demonstrations on safe and effective exercise techniques, visit the online exercise library available on the American Council on Exercise website (www.acefitness.org) and click on othe "Get Fit" tab.