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5 Ways to Get Active This Summer That Don’t Involve a Treadmill

5 Ways to Get Active This Summer That Don’t Involve a Treadmill

When exercising and staying in shape comes to mind, many people roll their eyes and think about some nasty gym down the street with rickety treadmills and old worn out elliptical machines. But what if we told you there are much more enjoyable ways to stay in shape?

Here are a few different activities and exercises you absolutely must try!

1. Dance the Day Away With Zumba

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    (Photo by JBLM MWR)

    Who doesn’t love to dance? Well, now you can dance and lose that annoying flab. Zumba is an aerobic exercise that combines choreographed footwork and various body movements from merengue, salsa, flamenco and a handful of other dances to burn fat and tone muscles.

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    The best thing about Zumba is that you’ll have so much fun, you won’t even realize you’re tightening up those abs, glutes, arms, and thighs. While there should be a local gym nearby with trained Zumba instructors and group classes, you can also purchase the DVDs to try at home.

    2. Go For a Bike Ride

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      (Photo by Solo, with others)

      Some people don’t like jogging because of the repetitive motion of pounding their legs into the pavement or ground. Well, you can get many of the same benefits by going on a bike ride.

      Bike rides increase cardiovascular fitness, muscle strength, and flexibility, while also decreasing stress, diminishing fat, and enhancing joint mobility. Not bad for something that’s also fun! Purchase a cruiser bike and mix up your terrain. Going from beach to pavement (and vice versa) will give your legs an extra workout.

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      3. Pick Up a Hula-Hoop

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        (Photo by ISKME)

        “This 1950s craze is no longer just child’s play,” says Rhea Seymour of Best Health Magazine. “Hula-hooping, or ‘hooping,’ has re-emerged as a great cardio workout to slim your waist, hips, buttocks and thighs while toning your abdominals and lower back muscles.”

        Hooping is also a great social exercise, as many people join groups and practice together. While you can technically find your old childhood hula-hoop in the attic and use it, these hoops aren’t the greatest. You’ll want to find one that’s a little larger and heavier – like this.

        4. Climb Some Rocks

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          (Photo by Yusmar Yahaya)

          One of the best all-around anaerobic workouts is indoor rock climbing. Not only does it burn hundreds of calories an hour, but it also builds incredible strength and balance in those muscle groups that don’t always get targeted with other exercises.

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          Rock climbing is also a pretty intense mental workout. For example, in bouldering you have to identify the correct route and then use problem-solving skills to choose the best path for your skill set. To find a rock climbing gym near you, check out this list of gyms from around the world.

          5. Go Paddle Boarding

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            (Photo by John Coley)

            If you’ve ever seen an advertisement for some beach resort in the Bahamas, you’ve probably seen a picture of someone standing up on a paddle board in front of a majestic backdrop. Well, what they’re not telling you is that paddle boarding is actually an incredibly intense workout.

            Paddle boarding not only improves your balance and provides a cardio workout, but it also gives you a full body workout – especially your core. And who doesn’t love to be on the water?

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            Ditch the Gym!

            While there’s nothing wrong with having a gym membership for those rainy days or cold winters, summer is made for spending time outside. Whether it’s cycling or paddle boarding, you don’t need a treadmill to get active. Gather a few of your friends and aim to be active while also having a great time.

            Featured photo credit: E’Lisa Campbell via flic.kr

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            Larry Alton

            Business Consultant

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            Last Updated on March 13, 2019

            How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

            How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

            Have you gotten into a rut before? Or are you in a rut right now?

            You know you’re in a rut when you run out of ideas and inspiration. I personally see a rut as a productivity vacuum. It might very well be a reason why you aren’t getting results. Even as you spend more time on your work, you can’t seem to get anything constructive done. While I’m normally productive, I get into occasional ruts (especially when I’ve been working back-to-back without rest). During those times, I can spend an entire day in front of the computer and get nothing done. It can be quite frustrating.

            Over time, I have tried and found several methods that are helpful to pull me out of a rut. If you experience ruts too, whether as a working professional, a writer, a blogger, a student or other work, you will find these useful. Here are 12 of my personal tips to get out of ruts:

            1. Work on the small tasks.

            When you are in a rut, tackle it by starting small. Clear away your smaller tasks which have been piling up. Reply to your emails, organize your documents, declutter your work space, and reply to private messages.

            Whenever I finish doing that, I generate a positive momentum which I bring forward to my work.

            2. Take a break from your work desk.

            Get yourself away from your desk and go take a walk. Go to the washroom, walk around the office, go out and get a snack.

            Your mind is too bogged down and needs some airing. Sometimes I get new ideas right after I walk away from my computer.

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            3. Upgrade yourself

            Take the down time to upgrade yourself. Go to a seminar. Read up on new materials (#7). Pick up a new language. Or any of the 42 ways here to improve yourself.

            The modern computer uses different typefaces because Steve Jobs dropped in on a calligraphy class back in college. How’s that for inspiration?

            4. Talk to a friend.

            Talk to someone and get your mind off work for a while.

            Talk about anything, from casual chatting to a deep conversation about something you really care about. You will be surprised at how the short encounter can be rejuvenating in its own way.

            5. Forget about trying to be perfect.

            If you are in a rut, the last thing you want to do is step on your own toes with perfectionist tendencies.

            Just start small. Do what you can, at your own pace. Let yourself make mistakes.

            Soon, a little trickle of inspiration will come. And then it’ll build up with more trickles. Before you know it, you have a whole stream of ideas.

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            6. Paint a vision to work towards.

            If you are continuously getting in a rut with your work, maybe there’s no vision inspiring you to move forward.

            Think about why you are doing this, and what you are doing it for. What is the end vision in mind?

            Make it as vivid as possible. Make sure it’s a vision that inspires you and use that to trigger you to action.

            7. Read a book (or blog).

            The things we read are like food to our brain. If you are out of ideas, it’s time to feed your brain with great materials.

            Here’s a list of 40 books you can start off with. Stock your browser with only the feeds of high quality blogs, such as Lifehack.org, DumbLittleMan, Seth Godin’s Blog, Tim Ferris’ Blog, Zen Habits or The Personal Excellence Blog.

            Check out the best selling books; those are generally packed with great wisdom.

            8. Have a quick nap.

            If you are at home, take a quick nap for about 20-30 minutes. This clears up your mind and gives you a quick boost. Nothing quite like starting off on a fresh start after catching up on sleep.

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            9. Remember why you are doing this.

            Sometimes we lose sight of why we do what we do, and after a while we become jaded. A quick refresher on why you even started on this project will help.

            What were you thinking when you thought of doing this? Retrace your thoughts back to that moment. Recall why you are doing this. Then reconnect with your muse.

            10. Find some competition.

            Nothing quite like healthy competition to spur us forward. If you are out of ideas, then check up on what people are doing in your space.

            Colleagues at work, competitors in the industry, competitors’ products and websites, networking conventions.. you get the drill.

            11. Go exercise.

            Since you are not making headway at work, might as well spend the time shaping yourself up.

            Sometimes we work so much that we neglect our health and fitness. Go jog, swim, cycle, whichever exercise you prefer.

            As you improve your physical health, your mental health will improve, too. The different facets of ourselves are all interlinked.

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            Here’re 15 Tips to Restart the Exercise Habit (and How to Keep It).

            12. Take a good break.

            Ruts are usually signs that you have been working too long and too hard. It’s time to get a break.

            Beyond the quick tips above, arrange for a 1-day or 2-days of break from your work. Don’t check your (work) emails or do anything work-related. Relax and do your favorite activities. You will return to your work recharged and ready to start.

            Contrary to popular belief, the world will not end from taking a break from your work. In fact, you will be much more ready to make an impact after proper rest. My best ideas and inspiration always hit me whenever I’m away from my work.

            Take a look at this to learn the importance of rest: The Importance of Scheduling Downtime

            More Resources About Getting out of a Rut

            Featured photo credit: Joshua Earle via unsplash.com

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