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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 September 16, 2019

            How to Stop Procrastinating: 11 Practical Ways for Procrastinators

            How to Stop Procrastinating: 11 Practical Ways for Procrastinators

            You have a deadline looming. However, instead of doing your work, you are fiddling with miscellaneous things like checking email, social media, watching videos, surfing blogs and forums. You know you should be working, but you just don’t feel like doing anything.

            We are all familiar with the procrastination phenomenon. When we procrastinate, we squander away our free time and put off important tasks we should be doing them till it’s too late. And when it is indeed too late, we panic and wish we got started earlier.

            The chronic procrastinators I know have spent years of their life looped in this cycle. Delaying, putting off things, slacking, hiding from work, facing work only when it’s unavoidable, then repeating this loop all over again. It’s a bad habit that eats us away and prevents us from achieving greater results in life.

            Don’t let procrastination take over your life. Here, I will share my personal steps on how to stop procrastinating. These 11 steps will definitely apply to you too:

            1. Break Your Work into Little Steps

            Part of the reason why we procrastinate is because subconsciously, we find the work too overwhelming for us. Break it down into little parts, then focus on one part at the time. If you still procrastinate on the task after breaking it down, then break it down even further. Soon, your task will be so simple that you will be thinking “gee, this is so simple that I might as well just do it now!”.

            For example, I’m currently writing a new book (on How to achieve anything in life). Book writing at its full scale is an enormous project and can be overwhelming. However, when I break it down into phases such as –

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            • (1) Research
            • (2) Deciding the topic
            • (3) Creating the outline
            • (4) Drafting the content
            • (5) Writing Chapters #1 to #10,
            • (6) Revision
            • (7) etc.

            Suddenly it seems very manageable. What I do then is to focus on the immediate phase and get it done to my best ability, without thinking about the other phases. When it’s done, I move on to the next.

            2. Change Your Environment

            Different environments have different impact on our productivity. Look at your work desk and your room. Do they make you want to work or do they make you want to snuggle and sleep? If it’s the latter, you should look into changing your workspace.

            One thing to note is that an environment that makes us feel inspired before may lose its effect after a period of time. If that’s the case, then it’s time to change things around. Refer to Steps #2 and #3 of 13 Strategies To Jumpstart Your Productivity, which talks about revamping your environment and workspace.

            3. Create a Detailed Timeline with Specific Deadlines

            Having just 1 deadline for your work is like an invitation to procrastinate. That’s because we get the impression that we have time and keep pushing everything back, until it’s too late.

            Break down your project (see tip #1), then create an overall timeline with specific deadlines for each small task. This way, you know you have to finish each task by a certain date. Your timelines must be robust, too – i.e. if you don’t finish this by today, it’s going to jeopardize everything else you have planned after that. This way it creates the urgency to act.

            My goals are broken down into monthly, weekly, right down to the daily task lists, and the list is a call to action that I must accomplish this by the specified date, else my goals will be put off.

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            Here’re more tips on setting deadlines: 22 Tips for Effective Deadlines

            4. Eliminate Your Procrastination Pit-Stops

            If you are procrastinating a little too much, maybe that’s because you make it easy to procrastinate.

            Identify your browser bookmarks that take up a lot of your time and shift them into a separate folder that is less accessible. Disable the automatic notification option in your email client. Get rid of the distractions around you.

            I know some people will out of the way and delete or deactivate their facebook accounts. I think it’s a little drastic and extreme as addressing procrastination is more about being conscious of our actions than counteracting via self-binding methods, but if you feel that’s what’s needed, go for it.

            5. Hang out with People Who Inspire You to Take Action

            I’m pretty sure if you spend just 10 minutes talking to Steve Jobs or Bill Gates, you’ll be more inspired to act than if you spent the 10 minutes doing nothing. The people we are with influence our behaviors. Of course spending time with Steve Jobs or Bill Gates every day is probably not a feasible method, but the principle applies — The Hidden Power of Every Single Person Around You

            Identify the people, friends or colleagues who trigger you – most likely the go-getters and hard workers – and hang out with them more often. Soon you will inculcate their drive and spirit too.

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            As a personal development blogger, I “hang out” with inspiring personal development experts by reading their blogs and corresponding with them regularly via email and social media. It’s communication via new media and it works all the same.

            6. Get a Buddy

            Having a companion makes the whole process much more fun. Ideally, your buddy should be someone who has his/her own set of goals. Both of you will hold each other accountable to your goals and plans. While it’s not necessary for both of you to have the same goals, it’ll be even better if that’s the case, so you can learn from each other.

            I have a good friend whom I talk to regularly, and we always ask each other about our goals and progress in achieving those goals. Needless to say, it spurs us to keep taking action.

            7. Tell Others About Your Goals

            This serves the same function as #6, on a larger scale. Tell all your friends, colleagues, acquaintances and family about your projects. Now whenever you see them, they are bound to ask you about your status on those projects.

            For example, sometimes I announce my projects on The Personal Excellence Blog, Twitter and Facebook, and my readers will ask me about them on an ongoing basis. It’s a great way to keep myself accountable to my plans.

            8. Seek out Someone Who Has Already Achieved the Outcome

            What is it you want to accomplish here, and who are the people who have accomplished this already? Go seek them out and connect with them. Seeing living proof that your goals are very well achievable if you take action is one of the best triggers for action.

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            9. Re-Clarify Your Goals

            If you have been procrastinating for an extended period of time, it might reflect a misalignment between what you want and what you are currently doing. Often times, we outgrow our goals as we discover more about ourselves, but we don’t change our goals to reflect that.

            Get away from your work (a short vacation will be good, else just a weekend break or staycation will do too) and take some time to regroup yourself. What exactly do you want to achieve? What should you do to get there? What are the steps to take? Does your current work align with that? If not, what can you do about it?

            10. Stop Over-Complicating Things

            Are you waiting for a perfect time to do this? That maybe now is not the best time because of X, Y, Z reasons? Ditch that thought because there’s never a perfect time. If you keep waiting for one, you are never going to accomplish anything.

            Perfectionism is one of the biggest reasons for procrastination. Read more about why perfectionist tendencies can be a bane than a boon: Why Being A Perfectionist May Not Be So Perfect.

            11. Get a Grip and Just Do It

            At the end, it boils down to taking action. You can do all the strategizing, planning and hypothesizing, but if you don’t take action, nothing’s going to happen. Occasionally, I get readers and clients who keep complaining about their situations but they still refuse to take action at the end of the day.

            Reality check:

            I have never heard anyone procrastinate their way to success before and I doubt it’s going to change in the near future.  Whatever it is you are procrastinating on, if you want to get it done, you need to get a grip on yourself and do it.

            More About Procrastination

            Featured photo credit: Malvestida Magazine via unsplash.com

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