It’s a rite of summer to lounge on a sun-drenched beach, watching the waves crashing against the shore and feeling the warm sand on your toes. While you’re enjoying your day at the seashore, why not squeeze in a fun workout? Here are some ways to get fit at the beach.
for a swim.
Swimming, a form or resistance training, is a great way to achieve overall cardio conditioning and cool off at the same time. Be sure to swim where there is a lifeguard, and always swim with a buddy. Ask the guard if there is any undertow or riptide before going in and don’t take chances. Many ocean beaches have colored flags indicting surf conditions.
This paddle ball game is designed to be played on the beach. Like tennis in the sand, it will give you a great cardio workout and you’ll also improve your hand-eye coordination. Since kadima involves short periods of high-intensity movement typically followed by time to catch your breath, kadima is a good way to get interval exercise.
Like kadima, playing Frisbee is another form of interval exercise. And if the other players aren’t very good, you’ll get an even better workout as you chase down their misguided throws.
Get in some crunches.
Strength training at the beach is simple and requires no special equipment. Without ever leaving your towel, you can do abdominal crunches (do half crunches if you’re just getting your abdominal muscles in shape). Alternate these with some planks, making sure that you keep your back straight and that you are supported by your arms or forearms and your toes. Hold the plank for 60 seconds and then repeat.
Do some yoga.
There’s nothing like yoga practice at dawn, sunset (or anytime) on the beach. You’ll work your muscles and relax as you meditate to the sound of the waves. Want to learn? Many seaside communities have beach yoga classes you can join.
Build a sandcastle.
Grab your kids or a friend and indulge your inner child as you construct the castle of your dreams. Digging sand and carrying water, especially when your creation is a little way away from the tide line provides a good workout for your leg and arm muscles. Be sure to completely fill up the buckets with water to make this fun “workout” harder.
Collect sea shells.
Go for a nice long walk along the beach and be sure to take along a bag or pail to collect sea glass, shells, and pretty stones. Walking in the deeper soft sand burns more calories and works your leg muscles harder than walking on the flat hard surface. .
Be sure to have a bottle of water handy to keep your fluid levels up, avoid drinking alcohol, which can have a dehydrating effect, and pack South Beach Diet-friendly snacks like our Good to Go Bars so you can replenish your energy stores. Also, consider wearing a hat, a visor, or sunglasses to protect your eyes, and apply and reapply plenty of sunscreen.