Got Workout Boredom? Here’s How to Bring Your Brain Into the Game
To help you find a fresh-air swap, we tapped iFit head trainer Becca Capell to share her go-to ways to get sweaty outside. Step one: Download the iFit Coach app, which connects exercise buffs (at every level) with personalized coaching—so it's basically like having your fave instructor in your pocket.
Not to mention, bringing your run or high-intensity intervals (hello, stadium sprints) outside gives your mind a break from the humdrum gym and challenges your body with new terrain—AKA, double win. Lace up and grab some sunscreen.
Scroll down for 3 easy ways to take your workouts outside—no matter what your preferred training method is.
1. When you and the treadmill are BFFs
You’re a runner who can put in ear buds, start a podcast, and completely zone out to the thud-thud-thud on the treadmill. But by staying inside, you're missing out on some eye-opening benefits.
For one thing, jogging on actual pavement can boost your overall physical fitness. “Running on varied terrain (grass, road, trail, cobblestone) will increase ankle stability,” Capell says. “Very little stability is required for landing on a perfectly smooth treadmill surface.”
But once you hit the road, it's best to take it slow. “Remember that running on a treadmill is 'simulated running' and therefore there might be a bit of an adaptation time as your body works on getting accustomed to the slight differences,” Capell says.
Want to take your newfound love for outdoor running to the next level by training for a race? iFit has you covered there too. Practice running across similar terrain as your upcoming race by connecting to Google Maps in the iFit app, and tap into coaching from all-star trainers for real-time pointers.
2. If weight lifting is your thing
Stumped on how to take your beloved resistance-training routine beyond the four walls of the gym? Ditch the dumbbells and try changing your perspective. "Even without heavy weights, you can get a great muscular workout by focusing on high repetition movements," Capell says.
Her al fresco gym of choice is a total TBT: "Playgrounds are perfect structures to get incredible workouts," she says. "Try chin ups, toes to bar, inverted rows, box jumps, triceps dips, etc."
If you have a park bench handy, try this move. Plant one foot on the bench and step onto it while driving the other foot as high as you can. Lower it back down and step onto floor. Repeat on the other side. Voilà, a routine to rival your lifting program.
3. You’re a fitness newbie looking for a challenge
Intimidated by the over-crowded gym? (Same.) Outdoor workouts are perfect for fitness newcomers trying to find a groove. "Your own bodyweight is a training tool you take with you anywhere," Capell says.
Use park benches, stairs, and natural landscapes for plyometric drills (like squats, box jumps, and burpees) that will get your heart pumping. “It’s great for increasing or maintaining your bone density as well as working on your explosive strength,” Capell says.
Her go-to outdoor workout seems simple, but will leave your legs burning. “On a field, do 100 meters of walking lunges and when you get to the end, do 10 push ups, 10 air squats, and a one-minute v-sit. Then repeat,” she says. Fair warning: You're def going to be sore tomorrow.
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