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5 Reasons You Should Try Beach Running This Summer

5 Reasons You Should Try Beach Running This Summer

It’s summer time! Summer requires a tight sexy body. And what better way to get in shape and enjoy the beautiful sights and sounds indigenous to the beach than by enjoying a run through the sand at sunset?

Besides feeling the sand between your toes and the sun on your face, research shows there are quite a few health benefits of running on the beach.

Benefits of Running on the Beach

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Woman_running_barefoot_on_beach

    1. Beach running provides a more intense workout than running on a hard flat surface does

    According to Dr. Thierry M. Lejeune of St. Luke’s University Clinics in Belgium, running on sand requires 1.6 times the energy that running on a hard surface requires, and your body has to work harder to respond to external modifications. And when you compare running on sand with running on concrete, gravel and grass in terms of calories consumed, running on sand is clearly a more intensive workout and burns more calories.

    The reason for this is that the muscles perform more mechanical work when running or walking on sand than on a hard surface, and your foot works harder to displace sand, and the muscles don’t function quite as efficiently. For example when running in wet sand you may slip a bit and have to fight the friction; this adds to the difficulty of the workout.

    It comes down to simple physics. Moving through sand is harder than moving over a flat smooth surface. The harder an activity is to perform the more energy you expend.

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    2. Beach running is easier on your knees and joints

    Running is a high-impact sport. In general, it puts stress on your knees, ankles and feet which can mean achy joints, irritated tendons, and other running-related injuries. And the harder the surface, the more stress you put on your joints and tendons

    One of the benefits of running on the beach is that the surface is softer and more malleable than concrete which translates into less knee and joint pain. Running on sand forces our smaller, stabilizing muscles in the knees, ankles, and feet to work harder than running on roads or grassy surfaces. Plus, since sand is soft, you can run on the surface with a lower risk of sustaining impact injuries–such as shin splints.

    3. Running on the beach improves overall athletic ability

    Another one the great and surprising benefits of running on the beach is that it makes you stronger, faster and improves your balance.

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    Dr. R. Amadeus Mason, a team physician for USA Track and Field and an assistant professor of orthopedics likens beach running to “running with weights on your ankles. it’s harder to get your foot planted into the ground, and it’s harder to get your foot up off the ground.”

    Running on the beach adds an element of resistance training and engages muscles differently than they are accustomed to being used. Your entire body has to work harder not just your legs.  Your arms have to pump harder to help propel you forward your core tightens and contracts faster and harder to give you the necessary stability you need. And all the extra work makes the heart pump faster and harder in an effort to supply all of your muscles with clean oxygenated blood. The result is a stronger and more efficient body.

    4. Running on the beach provides a phenomenal lower body workout

    When the sand moves beneath your feet it engages your ankles, arches and calves and causes them to become stronger. A study published in the “Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research,” found that, both road running and sand running increases vertical jumping ability and thigh circumference. However, those who participated in sand running  experienced the most physiological and performance changes.

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    5. Beach running provides a more comprehensive workout in a shorter time span

    One of the most significant benefits of running on the beach is you increase the benefits of exercise while being able to shorten the duration of the workout. When you run on the beach you:

    1. Burn more calories in a shorter time span
    2. Add resistance training to your workout
    3. Raise the intensity level of the work out
    4. Build both strength and endurance simultaneously.

    Tips for a successful beach run

    Photo Credit: Mike Baird on Flickr
      Photo Credit: Mike Baird on Flickr

      Here are a few tips to keep in mind when beginning beach running:

      • Run on wet sand
      • Try to run during falling or low tide
      • When you first begin running in sand, wear shoes and then gradually work up to running barefoot.
      • Pace yourself–begin with short runs and then increase the time as your body adjusts
      • Wear lots of sunscreen
      • Watch closely for sharp objects such as rocks, seashells, metal and glass in your path especially when running barefoot
      • Listen to your body–when you first begin running on the beach you will experience some soreness as your body becomes accustomed to functioning a bit differently. However, if you feel real pain or intense tenderness or fatigue stop and rest.

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      Denise Hill

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      Published on June 7, 2019

      10 Lower Body Workouts Anyone Can Try at Home

      10 Lower Body Workouts Anyone Can Try at Home

      Having a hard time going to the gym? Fear no more!

      In this article, we’ll be breaking down 10 in home lower body workouts anyone can try at home and their exercises. No gear needed for these workouts, just some space and a cup water waiting for your disposal.

      There’re 3 main parts in this article:

      If you’re familiar with the basic lower body exercises, just get into the first section 10 Lower Body Workouts That Can Be Done Anywhere right away.

      If you want more guidance on the basics, check out the second section Lower Body Exercises Breakdown.

      And the last section is about what you should do before and after working out.

      10 Lower Body Workouts That Can Be Done Anywhere

      If you’re familiar with the basic lower body exercises, just read on this section.

      If you’d like to have more guidance on each exercise listed in these 10 workouts, take a look at the following part Lower Body Exercises Breakdown.

      1. The Starter Workout

      3 sets of 8-12 reps of:

      • Squat
      • Single Leg Deadlift
      • Glute Bridge

      (30 sec to 2 min rest in between each set)

      2. The 7 Minute Workout

      3 rounds of 30 seconds of each exercise:

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      • Walking Lunges
      • Quarter Squat
      • Step Up
      • Single Leg Deadlift

      (1 min rest in between each round)

      3. The Unilateral Workout

      4 sets of 16 reps of:

      • Reverse Lunges
      • Single Leg Deadlift
      • Skater Squat
      • Single Leg Glute Bridge

      (30 sec to 1 min rest in between each set)

      4. The Endurance Workout

      2 sets of 20-50 reps of:

      • Squat
      • Walking Lunge
      • Single Leg Deadlift
      • Glute Bridge

      (1-2 min rest in between each set)

      5. The Back To Back Lower Body Workout

      5 rounds of 10 to 20 seconds of each exercise:

      • Skater Squat
      • Step Up
      • Single Leg Deadlift
      • Single Leg Glute Bridge
      • Quarter Squat

      (30 min rest in between each round)

      6. Strength Lower Body Workout

      5 to 10 sets of 4 reps of:

      • Walking Lunge
      • Single Leg Deadlift
      • Squat

      (30 sec to 2 mins of rest time in between set)

      7. Glute Burner Workout

      4 sets of 10-30 reps of:

      • Walking Lunge
      • Single Leg Deadlift
      • Single Leg Glute Bridge
      • Quarter Squat

      (1 min of rest time in between set)

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      8. The Advance Lower Body Workout

      3 rounds of 20 seconds of:

      • Squat
      • Walking Lunge
      • Skater Squat
      • Reverse Lunge
      • Glute Bridge
      • Single Leg Deadlift

      (2 mins of rest time in between set)

      9. The Quick Lower Body Workout

      2 sets of 10 reps of:

      • Reverse Lunge
      • Step Up
      • Single Leg Deadlift

      10. The 100 Repetition Challenge

      2 sets of 50 reps on each leg of:

      • Walking Lunge
      • Single Leg Deadlift

      (4 mins of rest time in between set)

      Lower Body Exercises Breakdown

      Here’s the breakdown of the lower body exercises[1] that you found in the workouts listed in the first section of this article.

      1. Squat

        A squat is a compound movement which entails the recruitment of a majority of your lower body (quadriceps, hamstrings, gluteal muscles, spinal erectors).

        How to squat:

        Feet shoulder width apart or a little wider. Toes pointed slightly out, arms out in front of you. Sit into your heels till you hit parallel with your butt and knee, drive through the heels, return to starting position and repeat.

        2. Walking Lunges

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          A lunge is a complex movement which recruits mainly the lower body.

          The walking lunges are a harder version of a split squat which is stationary and then adds the component of stepping and keeping balance which engages the gluteus medius as well as allowing a larger range of motion.

          3. Reverse Lunge

            A reverse lunge is very similar to the split squat but instead, after every rep, you are returning to the starting position and stepping back.

            By reverse stepping, you are allowing for a better emphasis on the hamstrings and gluteal muscles as opposed to the quadriceps muscles in a forward stepping lunge.

            4. Quarter Squat

              A quarter squat is the top ¼ movement of a squat. This will work mainly the gluteal muscles as it emphasizes the hip extension and not a lot of range of motion on the quadriceps muscles.

              5. Skater Squat

                A skater squat is a unilateral variation of the squat, this squat really engages the gluteus medius and hamstrings as it works unilateral stability and hip flexion which fires both the hamstrings and glutes.

                6. Step Up

                  The Step Up is the greatest balance of getting the glutes and quadriceps muscles firing. Doing Step Ups will not only get the glutes going, but the quadriceps as well.

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                  7. Glute Bridge

                    Glute Bridges are a great way to nearly isolate the glutes and build a great butt. This entire movement works through hip extension which the main movement of the gluteal muscles.

                    8. Single Leg Glute Bridge

                      Single leg glute bridge ensures that we are evenly building the glutes and not relying too heavily on our dominant leg and symmetrical butt. The step up can be done in a chair or a step in the stairs

                      9. Single Leg Deadlift

                        Single Leg RDL’s engage that entire booty and hamstrings, especially the gluteus medius due to its unilateral stability property. This is a great way to spice up some routine deadlifts.

                        Before & After Working Out

                        Before engaging in any physical activity, consult a doctor if you have not worked out in years. However, if you want to go at it without consulting a doctor, start slow and build your way up. Even though it’s home workout, use dynamic stretching or some light jogging[2] as a warm up before starting the lower body workouts.

                        Finally, at the end of the lower body workout, use static stretching to reduce injuries and to calm down your heart rate gradually.

                        Featured photo credit: Gesina Kunkel via unsplash.com

                        Reference

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