Outdoor workouts to try this summer (that don’t actually feel like exercise)

December 06, 2016
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I loved the proliferation of last year’s “Dad bod” drawn into the public sphere by Leo.  I rejoiced with males and females internationally as we finally exhaled some relief to the portrayal and celebration of a body other than one deemed “perfect”. Culturally we still have a long, long way to go to shift the emphasis from valuing someone solely based on what’s on the outside rather than their mind and heart. But change is in the works and it’s exciting.

In saying that, I truly love exercise. After recovering from an eating disorder over seven years ago I’ve come to fully appreciate the magnificence, strength and capabilities of the human body. So today not only do I squat for my booty, but I work out to feel good on inside, too. Exercise has a huge impact on your mood, stress levels, sleep, productivity and quality of life

Plus, we all know drinking and finishing uni go hand in hand like summer time and sand in your swimwear.  So to compensate for all the alcohol you’ll be consuming (you booze hound!), here’re some exercises to try in the coming warmer months. I promise your Corona with lime will taste all the more better after a workout.

Stand up paddle boarding

If you looked up the definition of a “fad” in the dictionary I’m pretty sure stand up paddle boarding would promptly follow suit. “But what’s all the fuss?” you ask.

Firstly you’re outside on the water and in the sunshine soaking up that good ol’ Vitamin D baby. You also can paddle board on rivers and lakes too. Plus, it’s relatively easy even if you’re uncoordinated like me. Go hire a board with your mates for a few hours and get an upper body and core workout.

But maybe don’t try this in a pool.

Surfing

I’m sure I’m not the only one who had visions of being a world champion surfer after Blue Crush came out. Turns out it does require a little skill. But surfing is so rewarding and inexpensive after you get over the initial purchase of a board. You can go with friends and it gets the adrenaline pumping. And because you’re in nature there’re no time constraints – you can go whenever you please (just make sure it’s before dark).

Hiking

The name sounds more strenuous than it is. There’re no rules with hiking and bushwalking. You can have a wander around your local beach or park. Or if you’re feeling up for a challenge you could do a two-day hike in the Blue Mountains. And if you’re really clever, you can pack an ice-cold beer to enjoy afterwards. You’re outside, your blood’s pumping and you’re getting your sweat on. Could you think of anything better? (Trick question– eating a burrito is better but still, hiking is also good).

Swimming

This seems like an obvious dot point seeing as though this is an article about exercise to do during summer. However, in the latter years a peculiar thing has occurred whereby swimming has been thrown under the rug, forgotten about, only to come into our consciousness when we become completely mesmerised by it once every four years. However, swimming is an extremely relaxing and therapeutic exercise and it’s not harsh on your bones and joints.  As it’s predominately a solo sport, you can think whatever you like, and sing until your heart’s content.

Avril Treasure

Avril studies Journalism at Notre Dame in Sydney. In her spare time she enjoys playing cards with her grandfather, drinking one too many margaritas and pondering hypothetical questions. You can read more of her work at writingsnotlost.com.

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