To Your Health
July, 2012 (Vol. 06, Issue 07)
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Summer Beach Workout

By Editorial Staff

Yes, summer is here and the time is right – for exercising on the beach! All you need is a sand, surf and motivation, and you're on your way. In fact, your average trip to the beach probably yields a better workout than you could ever get at your local gym – and without even trying.

What we mean is that you'll do each of the following just by getting to the beach and enjoying your day in the sun.

1. Fight the current: If you've ever tried to run (or even walk) through a headwind, you can appreciate the physical effort needed to navigate the waves (and the potential wind) on your average day at the beach. Spend a few hours splashing through the waves, fighting your way back to your "spot" when the current drags you 50 feet "downstream," and you'll experience a total-body workout without spending one minute at the gym. Throw in some serious swimming and you'll reap even more benefits.

2. Kick some sand: If you think a jog on the treadmill or around the block is tough, imagine doing it in quicksand. To some extent, that's what it's like when you run in dry sand. With every unsteady step, your feet sink a little deeper, your legs burn a little more intensely, and your entire lower and upper body work harder to keep moving. Your cardiovascular system goes on high alert and your muscles work overtime to compensate for the challenging running surface. Now that's a workout! If you're used to jogging a few miles on pavement or at the gym, try a quarter mile in the sand and you'll see what we mean.

Beach Workout - Copyright – Stock Photo / Register Mark 3. Pick your spot: While the temptation may be the park your car as close to your anticipated "spot" as possible, you can increase your workout benefits by parking farther away and lugging yourself and all your "stuff" a longer distance. (You may not be able to park that close anyway, particularly if you don't arrive early.) A pop-up tent, a cooler and a few bags of goodies are your weights; the sand is your treadmill. Combined, you've got a sweat-maximizing, fat-burning, muscle-toning workout just to get to where you want to go. And just think; when your day's done and it's time to pack up, you'll repeat the same workout to get back to your car.

Exercise has countless health benefits, and research is even showing that eating right isn't enough if you don't combine it with consistent exercise. Talk to your doctor of chiropractic about the benefits of exercise, and ask them about the exercise routine most suitable to your health and fitness goals. Then hit the beach – or your favorite outdoor location – and make it happen!