There are few greater joys in life than the feeling of warm sun on your skin and fresh air in your lungs. This certainly holds true in the fitness world, where screens and complex equipment within the home are increasingly popular choices, keeping us even more glued to our devices.
Don’t get us wrong — innovative indoor fitness experiences can work wonders. However, at some point, everyone needs some quality time with vitamin D. That’s not just fanciful thinking, either. Outdoor exercise can actually reduce stress and increase well-being.
If you’re ready to take your fitness regimen outside, try these four exercises for weight loss, all of which are well-suited to your own backyard with no complicated equipment required.
Jump-rope workouts are super simple and can be done essentially anywhere, including in your yard or local open space. Don’t have a rope on hand? You can easily pick up a basic jump rope online or at just about any sporting goods or big-box store.
There are all sorts of jump-rope workouts available online, from relaxing, measured jumps to high-impact interval training (HIIT) routines. If you’re looking for a fat-loss exercise, HIIT workouts are certainly the go-to. For this routine, alternate 20 seconds of rope-jumping with 20 seconds each of push-ups, then 20 more seconds of squat thrusts, all while resting for 20-30 seconds in between.
What’s old is new again. It wasn’t long ago that medicine balls conjured up grainy black-and-white images of young men tossing the weighted balls back and forth to warm up for basketball practice. However, the medicine ball has achieved new life of late, thanks in part to its popularity in the CrossFit community.
One medicine ball workout, created by Men’s Journal, actually recommends the routine be done outside where you have the most space possible. To get you started, try incorporating these exercises into your routine.
- To begin, keep your feet shoulder-width apart and elbows tucked in, holding the ball at chest level
- Squat down then explode upward, throwing the ball as high as you can
- Complete five sets and three to five reps
Reverse Scoop Throw
- Hold the ball in front of you at arm’s length
- Bend forward, keeping your back straight
- Stand back up, gently thrust your hips forward and throw the ball up and over your head
- Complete five or six sets with up to five reps per set
Side Scoop Throw
- Stand with your legs staggered
- Slightly bend the knees and hinge at the hips while holding the ball at arm’s length
- Twist your torso, throwing the ball across your body
- Repeat on the other side for one rep
- Challenge yourself to finish five sets, with three to five reps per set
This one is as simple (and effective) as they come. After a warmup of light jogging, sprint as hard as you can for as far as you can, anywhere from 25 to 100 yards, depending on your goals and fitness level. After the sprint, slowly jog or walk for two minutes, or about triple the time it took you to complete the sprint.
Repeat eight to ten times, and don’t forget to cool down and stretch afterward.
Outdoor Circuit Training
Circuit training is a great way to diversity your exercise routine and tailor the workout to match your fitness level. Not sure where to start? Try out these moves in your backyard or green space:
- Long Jumps: With legs together, jump the length of a mat or towel
- Push-ups: The tried-and-true core exercise you’ve been doing since grade school
- Sumo Squats: Stand with your feet wider than your hips and lower into a squat, and stand back up
- Burpees: Jump with legs together, then squat down and place your hands on the ground. Thrust your legs out into a plank position, then return them to a crouch position. Use your legs to power a jump into the air and repeat.
- Mountain Climbers: From a push-up position, use the balls of your feet to thrust one knee up under your chest. Return your leg to its starting position, then perform the move with your other knee, continuing to alternate.
The outdoors are sure to deliver a much-needed dose of rejuvenation and reinvigoration, so if you’re feeling a little closed in with your current fitness regimen, all you have to do is look out the window.
BlissMark provides information regarding health, wellness, and beauty. The information within this article is not intended to be medical advice. Before starting any diet or exercise routine, consult your physician. If you don’t have a primary care physician, the United States Health & Human Services department has a free online tool that can help you locate a clinic in your area. We are not medical professionals, have not verified or vetted any programs, and in no way intend our content to be anything more than informative and inspiring.
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