Summer can be a tough time for fitness buffs. With temperatures on the rise, heading outside is unappealing even to the most motivated, while those who struggle with sticking to an exercise routine when the weather is perfect may find themselves in a constant battle against their couch and its seemingly magnetic draw. Faced with these discouraging forces, then, what’s the best way to make sure you keep moving this summer? The secret lies in finding ways to stay cool and make movement more fun.

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Diana Măceşanu
@dyana

Go For A Swim

One of the simplest and most popular ways to make sure exercise is part of your summer routine is to go swimming. Whether in the pool or at the beach, swimming is a low-impact workout that can actually help you burn a lot of calories. That’s because the water provides a great deal of resistance while simultaneously taking pressure off of your joints. This makes it a perfect exercise for individuals with arthritis or those who have joint pain due to being overweight. Traditional swim strokes also provide a full-body workout, engaging nearly all of your muscles.

Catch A Wave Or A Wake

Looking for a workout that’s a little more adventurous than swimming? No problem. If you’ve got access to a larger body of water, then summer is the perfect time to challenge yourself with an activity like surfing or wakeboarding. These activities require extraordinary muscle strength and balance and can help you build flexibility and endurance – there’s a reason that all those surfers in SoCal are so buff!

If you want to try surfing, wakeboarding, or other, similar activities, you’ll need the right gear for the task, and an experienced shop can help outfit you. In addition to a board, wakeboarders need various accessories, like boots and ropes, while surfers need boards designed for their size and skill level, so make sure you come prepared. You might also want to take a few lessons if you’re new to these activities.

Be A Wave Runner

Running can be one of the most unpleasant summer activities, just because it’s so hot, which is why many dedicated runners choose to lace up early in the morning, before the heat of the day sets in. Still, there may be an even better option, and one that will make for a tougher workout: running laps in and out of the water. Starting at the shore, run into the water – you want to go until the water reaches about chest height – and then turn around and run back. As noted, the water provides extra resistance, and while running barefoot on sand can be good for your feet, it’s actually a harder surface to push off of, making your workout a bit more difficult.

Splash It Out

Not everything has to be a carefully designed workout in order to get you moving and help you stay in shape. In fact, spending a day at the beach is a great way to wear yourself out without even noticing you’re exercising, a phenomenon you’ve likely noticed in the aftermath of previous beach trips. Whether you’re at the shore with friends or playing with your kids, trekking across sand, splashing, swimming, and playing beach volleyball will all burn a surprising number of calories. As it turns out, sometimes staying fit looks exactly the same as having fun.