If you’re keen to up your fitness level, but shudder at the thought of spending hours sweating it out at the gym, try a few of these uncommon workout regimens — you might be surprised to discover how easy it is to stay in shape!
Let’s be honest — not all of us are natural gym junkies. In fact, many women secretly loathe working out. But staying in shape doesn’t have to be all about monotonous treadmills and awkward boxing sessions in the park. Exercise can be fun — and it can be found where you least expect it.
Get funky in the garden
Spending an hour or so a few times a week in the garden, doing things like digging, raking, weeding and planting, will give your body enough of a workout to rival a solid gym session. Not only does gardening work a variety of muscles through bending, stretching and resistance, it’s also far more convenient than going to the gym — and more private. What’s more, gardening gives you the added health benefits of natural vitamin D exposure. By spending a few hours a week outdoors in the garden, you’ll soon be feeling fresh, energised and fitter.
Walking tour of your city
Walking is one of the easiest ways to stay fit and healthy, yet if the thought of walking several laps around the block bores you to tears, try a walking tour of your local CBD. You may already feel as if you know the ins and outs of the city you call home, but cities are forever developing and changing. After spending some time meandering through those lesser-known inner city neighbourhoods, you’ll discover a host of new and exciting places to eat, drink and shop, and you won’t even realise you’ve been exercising while doing so!
Take the elliptical outside
If running isn’t your thing, but you like the idea of exercising outdoors, the elliptical bike could be right up your alley. It’s somewhere between a bike and an elliptical trainer and, according to creators ElliptiGO, the gadget mimics running outside. “Unlike a stuck-in-place gym machine, you have to use your core muscles to stay standing. Plus, you get the mental and physical health benefits of outdoor exercise, such as increased energy and feeling more revitalised than if you were logging elliptical miles at the gym,” they say.
Get fit sitting down
Sometimes, all you need in order to get in a good workout is a chair and your imagination. Classes like Zumba Sentao, or “Chair Zumba”, incorporate popular Zumba fitness movements and music with chair-based workout regimens focused on your core and cardiovascular fitness. Even in the comfort of your own home, you can do all kinds of exercises, like abdominal crunches and star jumps, from a sitting position. Chair workouts are great for your posture, too.
Talk and walk
The next time you’re thinking about meeting a friend for a coffee, get a takeaway and head out for a walk — or better yet, ditch the coffee altogether and focus on enjoying each other’s company while you exercise. It’s always more fun getting fit with a friend. If you do most of your socialising on the phone, take yourself out for a walk next time you’re on the phone to your bestie.