|Summer is here! No more hiding under all those layers of winter clothes! With the temperatures rising, it’s time to use summer to your advantage. Whether you need to lose a few pounds or just stay in shape, the beach is a perfect place to get a great workout. The sound of the waves, the nice breeze, the smell of the ocean, and the sand in between your toes – it doesn’t get better than that! The beach is also a great place to involve friends and family to be active with you.By taking your routine to the beach, it naturally adds the elements of sand and water to your workout, providing a great alternative cross training method that will give your sweat sessions a different spin.
THE BENEFITS OF SAND
Increased effort during the workout
When you walk on sand, your feet sink into it, engaging your calves, hamstrings, quads and glutes. Because it takes more effort to walk/ run on sand, it elevates the heart rate and burns more calories. So start slow until you get acclimated to the movements.
It’s a balancing act
Since sand is unstable and it moves under your feet, it forces you to engage your core muscles during movement. By using your stabilizing muscles in the sand, you’ll be using muscle groups you may not normally use, so ease into these workouts.
Less impact on your joints
Sand absorbs much more impact than a hard surface, so it is better for your joints. Sand makes jumping, running and skipping easier on your knees than if you were on cement or at the gym.
THE BENEFITS OF WATER
Water’s resistance power provides the added bonus of being able to work opposing muscles at the same time. If you do bicep curls under water, the pulling up motion will work your biceps, while pushing down activates your triceps. Running in the water is a great calorie-blaster while keeping you cool – you won’t even feel yourself sweat!
Water’s buoyancy makes it very gentle on your joints and is recommended for people who suffer from rheumatoid arthritis.
THE BENEFITS OF SUN
The sun provides a healthy psychological aspect to being active outdoors by boosting your mental and physical well being. Compared with exercising indoors, exercising in natural environments is associated with greater feelings of revitalization, increased energy and positive engagement, along with decreases in tension, confusion, anger and depression.
THE BEACH WORKOUT
Now, it’s time to put on your sunscreen and go work out outdoors! To enhance your beach workouts, bring a medicine ball or an empty gallon canister that you can fill with sand or water for extra weight.
A. Walking lunges with twist
- While holding a weight, step forward with your right foot into a lunge position, arms extended in front. Keep your knee over your right foot.
- Using your torso, twist your upper body to the right and reach across your right side with your arms stretched out, maintaining a slow, controlled movement.
- Slowly move your arms back to the center and step forward with the opposite foot and twist to the other side. Do 10 to 15 steps on each leg.
B. Half-squat alternating pushing*
- Facing a partner, stand in a half squat position with shoulders back. One partner places fists against the other partner’s flat palms.
- Keeping the core engaged, alternate pushing against the palm by using full arm strength while other partner resists. Do three sets of 30.
C. Half squat and pull*
- Facing a partner, grab each other’s forearms and stand in half squat position, shoulders back.
- Keeping the core engaged, Partner 1 pulls Partner 2’s arms in an alternating pattern as Partner 1 walks backwards and Partner 2 resists. Switch so that Partner 2 is now pulling Partner 1 with alternating arms. Do three sets of 30 seconds each direction.
D. Squat and shoulder press
- Stand with feet shoulder-width apart, knees slightly bent, holding the weight at chest height.
- Bend knees about 90 degrees into a squat, keeping your body weight on heels without allowing knees to move past your toes.
- Stand up and extend your arms, bringing the weight above your head.
- Repeat four sets of 10 to 15 repetitions.
Plank to pushup (not pictured)
- From a plank position, move one arm at a time to lift yourself up into a pushup position.
- Move one arm at a time back into the starting plank position.
- Repeat four sets of 8 to 12 repetitions, alternating which arm you move first between positions.
VITAMIN D: THE “SUNSHINE VITAMIN”
It is estimated that 75% of the population in America does not get sufficient exposure to Vitamin D, the only vitamin that can be made by the human body from sunshine.
Benefits of Vitamin D include:
– Reduces depression
– Reduces the risk of multiple sclerosis
– Reduce the risk of Type 2 diabetes
– Prevents high blood pressure
– Reduces cancer risk
– Helps prevent bone disease
– Reduces risk of rheumatoid arthritis
– Prevents flu
– Reduces severity of cataracts
*These movements utilize Samir Becic’s ReSync Method, which is based on simplicity – you use your own body and little else. Every muscle in the body can be trained by the body’s own movement and natural resistance, eliminating the need for costly, heavy machines. The ReSync Method is ideal for couples, friends and families who want to work out together.
Samir and Dijana Becic are creators of Health and Fitness Revolution. Learn more about the Resync Method atShot on location at Westside Tennis & Fitness