Outdoor Workouts: Make The Most Of The Weather And A Bad Economy And Get In Great Shape

I am lucky to live in Los Angeles where the weather is awesome 90 percent of the time and gives us the chance to have outdoor workouts.  I know many other places are not as lucky, but we are right in the middle of summer and it looks like many places are experiencing the type of weather that makes it perfect to do workouts and activities that will benefit our health.

Make The Outdoors Your Personal Gym

Most people do not go to the gym for various reasons: time, money, distance, etc.  Believe me, I understand how hard it is if you are low on cash and can’t sign up to a gym, the economy is killing us! Literally! So what options do we have?  Well, the best alternative is to use the outdoors in your favor.

When we think of a workout outdoors we usually develop a picture in our minds of someone rock climbing, mountain climbing, mountain biking or surfing.  These are all excellent workouts and I highly recommend them but they are not for everyone, especially when most people don’t have the skills to do them.

Go Back To Basics- A Gym Class Approach

Remember the days in gym class when you used to run outside doing laps? What followed next were burpees, maybe some push-ups, sit ups and about 30 minutes of a sport.  If you think about it you were probably in decent shape and so were the rest of your classmates.  So why not apply the same techniques now to get fit?

Because you are going to be outdoors the best approach should combine bodyweight workouts along with your cardio.  Instead of doing steady state cardio like going for a long jog, instead do interval training as this will burn more calories and have you looking lean faster than if you were to do long cardio sessions.

Cardio Outdoors

Most of us have a high school or college campus with a track, well why not use it? You can easily run sprints for 2 laps on a track by doing the following approach:

Begin with a 5 minute warm up of jumping jacks and running/ jogging in place.  Alternate between one minute drills of each exercise.

Lap 1

  • Jog for 100 meters
  • Run at 80 percent of your maximum speed the next 100 meters
  • Jog for 100 meters
  • Run at 80 percent of your maximum speed the next 100 meters

Lap 2

  • Jog for 100 meters
  • Run at 80-90 percent of maximum speed for 100 meters
  • Jog or walk for 100 meters
  • Run at 80-90 percent of maximum speed for 100 meters

This workout follows principles of HIIT/ Interval Burst Training and will help you burn fat more effectively than if you were simply jogging for over 30 minutes

Sprinting at the Park, Lake or Beach

If you do not have access to a track or prefer a lake, beach, or park you can follow the same drill.

Simply estimate a distance of 100 meters in a straight line and jog or walk one way then follow that with a quick sprint the opposite way.

If you find it difficult to estimate a distance of 100 meters do the following;

Jog in a straight line for 60 seconds and mark off the ending point.  This will serve as your guideline between your starting point and end point.  Perform the same drill as the track workout.

You could technically do these drills on your neighborhood street, especially if you live in a neighborhood absent of traffic, preferably staying on the sidewalk.

You can also do hill sprints if you live in an area that has hills simply jog/ walk for one minute and sprint for one minute. Do this for a total of 15 minutes.

Outdoor Bodyweight Workout

After a 5 to 10 minute break from your cardio follow this with the following workout.

This completes one set.

Move continuously from one exercise to the next without resting.

Repeat cycle three more times for a total of 4 sets.

Rest 30 seconds between sets.

If you have access to a pull up bar you can finish with 3 sets maximum number of reps per set.

Do this workout twice or three times per week on non consecutive days for best results.  Try to stay active by going on a jog or walk on your off days and maintain a healthy diet.

You can use the outdoor workouts samples I have outlined to turbo charge your fat burning to a new level.  Hopefully this workout sample will help you take your fitness plan beyond just a gym.  Try this to switch it up or to get started on your goal of looking fit and d feeling healthier.

Comments

  1. I’m happy to be living out in SoCal as well… where the weather’s almost always nice enough to take your workout outdoors! On top of that, I’ve got a nice big yard and am just a couple blocks away from a dirt path that goes along side the ocean. A nice change of pace from when I lived in frigid Minnesota!

    • Sam Munoz says:

      Darrin,
      I’ve heard about Minnesota winters and they sound brutal. We definitely are very lucky to have this weather.

      -Sam

  2. Sam,

    I live in Florida and I love the hot weather. I much prefer to train outdoors, whether it’s playing soccer or doing HIIT in the park, than go running on a treadmill. In fact, I’ve never used a treadmill in my life and I probably never will!

    Alykhan

    • Sam Munoz says:

      Alykhan,
      It is very important to stay active, not only in the gym, but also doing the things we love. Soccer is definitely a great way to stay in shape.

      -Sam

  3. Nice way to make outdoor workouts more effective by using HIIT. I envy those that have good weather year round. I’d love to be able to go to some of the West Coast beaches that have the equipment for pullups, muscle ups, etc.

    • Sam Munoz says:

      Dave,
      We are lucky out here in California. Will Rogers State Beach, for example, which is next to Santa Monica has pull up bars next to the bicycle path and Santa Monica has stairs along with pull up bars and gymnastics rings.

      -Sam

  4. Hey Sam,

    yet another really good one, what can I say, you make me jealous! 😉

    I like your outdoors body weight stuff, as well as the HIIT style interval running.

    What I do sometimes is combine them into a HIIT/Body weight Workout: more variety, plenty of fun, and a GREAT training to boot.

    Have a Good One,

    Mark

    • Sam Munoz says:

      Thanks Mark. Your site is looking great as well and is jam packed with great info.

      -Sam

  5. Great article, exercising outdoors is definitely an emerging trend and I actually prefer it to indoor exercise on many occasions. In times when you don’t have motivation to workout, exercising outdoors can really be a life saver as far as interest goes.

    • Sam Munoz says:

      Ahmed,
      I have traind mostly indoors but on cool summer nights it feels good to do cardio outdoors. It is HIIT training but is very effective. I also see a trend happening as well.

      -Sam

  6. Outdoor workouts are definitely something I want to take advantage of while the sun still shines. The other day I went to the park and was doing a little routine, but I kinda noticed I was being watched and felt I probably looked like I was trying to show off. I think a training partner might be a good idea to avoid those self conscious moments.

    Michael