It has been a long and cold winter. We have been cooped up in the house and looking longingly towards the outdoors hoping to step outside again. It is finally warming up a bit to where we can get some good ole vitamin D.
Nothing beats a good cardio workout away from the treadmill, elliptical, etc. Here are a few simple and classic suggestions.
First off, lace up the running shoes and enjoy a nice brisk stroll around the block to get the feel of the pavement back under your feet.
My favorite is to pump up the air in my bike tires and go for a leisurely ride. My goal is to get lost. I turn on my iPhone App to track my efforts and GPS through Endomondo and start down the road. The goal is to keep my feet moving to keep the heart pumping, but not wear myself out to the point I am winded. Just play with the gears until you find the perfect setting to accomplish this goal. It should not feel any more stressful than a walk.
The trick with the long ride is to occupy your mind. Forget the TV, people and house watch. I love going on rides right before I plan the next home improvement project. Seeing the different ideas for landscaping and such accomplishes two things: I get ideas and my mind is thinking about how I can apply or adapt their idea into my own and I forget I am on mile nine.
Another idea is to take the inside workout…outside. A lot of people enjoy doing workout videos. It is not something that motivates me, but if you can make it work, there are some fantastic videos. The fact they are videos means that you can take them with you anywhere. Why not?
Pull up YouTube workout videos on your iPad or tablet and take it to the back yard. If it is a DVD and you cannot get it onto a tablet, bring out the laptop and enjoy it that way. I have seen some people even go somewhere more exotic to employ this strategy. If you live by the beach, woods, mountains, or lakefront, it is rather soothing and cancels out the monotony of the living room. Not to mention, a slight travel to another location is a push to complete the workout. No one wants to have traveled somewhere just to quit.
I think a fun way to enjoy your cardio workout would be to combine the two ideas I have offered. Grab your tablet, toss it into a back pack, and ride your bike to a secluded area to enjoy your workout. Get a full dose of the outdoors and cardio.
(Photo courtesy of Sanja Gjenero)