Work Out On The Beach
Now that the summer weather is here, it’s tempting to use your local beach for relaxing and sunbathing, but instead try using it as your personal, more beautiful, sandy gym. Think about it, you’ve got ready-made resistance training facilities (a.k.a. sand), hills or stairs to run up and down, and an ocean to dip in afterwards. All this and a stunning view as well. Let’s look at how you can get the most out of your beach fitness regime, safely.
Circuits are a great way to train, as they offer a variety of exercises that can target all areas of the body, plus equipment is optional. With a whole beach as your playground, your workout is only limited by your imagination. One of our friendly personal trainers has put together some suggestions below to get you started. Just amend them as you need to and watch out for any snoozing sunbathers!
- 10 push ups
- 10 walking lunges
- 10 squats
- 10 sit ups
- 10 tricep dips
- Plank for one minute
- Sprint for 30 metres
Repeat the above five times, with a minute’s rest in between sets. Experiment with mixing up and changing the exercises, reps and sets, until you find a routine that works for you.
Running on sand is good for fitness and also builds strength in your legs. It provides extra resistance and, thanks to its unstable surface, your body works extra hard to balance by activating the core muscles. Try exercising with bare feet to give your body a real fitness test.
If you want to raise the stakes of your exercise routine, try changing direction while running, as this uses different muscles. Mark out six to eight points in the sand that are facing each other, then try running between them, so you’re moving in diagonal lines. Repeat this three times to really get the heart pumping.
Sand is one of the toughest surfaces to sprint on, so test yourself by giving it a go. Aim to sprint for about 20 seconds, as fast as you can, then walk slowly for 10 seconds and sprint again. Repeat in sets of three, about eight to 10 times.
Walking or running in shallow water (or waist-deep water, if it’s safe to do so) can add extra resistance to your workout.
Try swimming in the sea if you’re a competent swimmer – aim for 50 strokes away from the shore, then swim back and repeat three times. Swimming is a good all-round physical activity because it builds muscle strength and cardiovascular fitness, but is low impact and doesn’t stress your body.
Importantly, when in the water, remember to stay between the flags and listen to the lifeguards’ instructions.
Make sure your beach workout is a good one by following our PT’s tips for staying safe:
- Always wear sun protection.
- Take a drink bottle and sip water before, during and after working out.
- Check your training area for any hidden dangers such as broken glass or sharp objects.
- Be careful around water.
- If you’re new to training on the beach, always check in with a professional prior to giving it a go.