For every person who loves going to the gym, there are others who say that treadmills and rowing machines just don’t motivate them. If you’re someone who dislikes the gym, you probably already know that there are a ton of other exercises you could try, both indoors and outdoors, but perhaps you don’t know where to start. The key is to find a sport or activity that doesn’t feel like work, so you will maintain your new healthy habit, whether that means joining a gentle yoga class or taking up boxercise. With this in mind, here are four innovative exercise ideas to try that don’t involve the gym.
Hiking is one of the simplest exercises you can do, and one of the best for your health. Not only does it offer numerous physical benefits, but it also promotes better mental health and wellbeing. Whether you’re looking for a solo activity or one to enjoy with friends, hiking encourages you to step away from your screen and get out in nature. What’s more, hiking is practically free! All you’ll need is some good boots, some weatherproof clothing, and a comfortable pack. If you’re interested in walking for health benefits or to try and lose weight, you can look online to find hiking trails near you.
Pilates is known for working the “core,” but many people remain oblivious to its other numerous benefits. It’s not unlike yoga, in that it encourages stretching and deep breathing, but Pilates focuses on strengthening the muscles more than improving flexibility. The Pilates method follows a series of around 500 exercises inspired by calisthenics, yoga, and ballet. It improves flexibility, strength, balance and body awareness as well as mental health and concentration. Pilates is practised widely, so you should be able to find a class in your area by looking online on sites such as hulahub.com.
Haven’t been dancing since you were a kid? You could be missing out! Dancing provides a workout like no other, helping to strengthen, tone and train muscle groups that are seldom targeted through other forms of exercise. Don’t be shy about joining a class – no one is good at dancing when they first start out, but you might be surprised by how much you enjoy it. You can search online for “dance clubs near me” such as tap, contemporary dance, ballet and salsa by looking online or enquiring at your local sports center.
Feel burnt out and overwhelmed by your job, or perhaps other life circumstances? Boxing provides the perfect outlet for stress and is an effective way to lose weight and tone up your muscles. No one’s saying you have to be a professional boxer, but the training can be both fun and physically rewarding. If you want to sharpen your mind, improve your mental health and strengthen your core, then boxing is a great workout to try. Look out for boxing lessons happening near you and invest in some gloves and a punching bag so you can practice at home.