Daily life in the summertime is a blast. Summer means ice cream, backyard cookouts, and boardwalk food, yum! But when it comes to staying fit, the summer can be a struggle. Hot days and humid nights make staying cool hard and working out even harder. It’s an uncomfortable time to be sweaty, and it also tends to be the time of year we feel most exposed. By the end of a long, hot summer day, all you want to do is cool off with a cold drink in some comfortable shade, not hit the gym or go for a sticky run. Sounding familiar? You’re not alone! We all want to look and feel our best, and summer workouts don’t have to equal bummer workouts. So slather up your sunscreen and get out there. Here are some summer sports that can make your workout more enjoyable and even fun!
On our hottest summer days, all we want to do is feel refreshed and get some relief from the heat. So why not cool down and work out at the same time! You can always find a nice local spot to swim, whether it be a neighborhood pool, lake, swimming hole, or a trip to the beach. Grab your one-piece swimsuit and jump in the water (sunscreen necessary, goggles optional). You don’t have to be a professional to work on an easy stroke, like a basic freestyle, a slow-paced breaststroke, or even a light doggie paddle! Just a few laps can get your heart rate up and get your body moving! Not in a space with lap lanes? Swim in circles or from one side of the lake or water to the other! Don’t make it more challenging than it has to be! Remember, start slow and keep the pace that’s right for you. You’ll have fun and soak up the sun!
An American classic, there’s something special about baseball on summer evenings. The lights, the hats, the drama—it all adds up to a lot of fun! Whether you’re a fan of the pros or more of a Little Leaguer, baseball is good, clean fun for the whole family. This is another sport that can be as simple or complicated as you want it to be. Hit a local field for a regulation setup, or toss around a ball in your yard! Want to make a whole evening out of it? Pack a picnic and play catch in the park, then finish up the night hunting fireflies or watching the sunset over a family meal! Talk about America’s pastime.
Ready to try getting on dry land? Or sand? Hit the volleyball court! A fun game of volleyball keeps your muscles working and allows you to soak up some sunrays. Many beaches have nets already set up, as well as local parks, schools, and recreation centers. Feeling ambitious? Set up a net in your own backyard! Grass and sand allow soft falling ground for those looking for a more ambitious game. Grab your friends and head to the court! Set up your beach towel for a stretching and resting spot between rounds. No one else to play with? Practice your volleying! See how many times you can hit the ball up in the air without dropping it, or play against a wall, bumping the ball back to yourself. If you’re playing at the beach you can finish up with a nice dip in the ocean.
Not into group activities? Going for a bike ride is a great way to check out the scenery and get your workout in! Check out local trails, parks, or neighborhood rides, and set a pace that’s right for you. Like any workout, it’s as fun as you make it! Set distance goals (maybe you can start with a couple of miles a day) or ride to specific places in your area. Riding your bike keeps you cool in the breeze and provides your sunshine intake! Plus, the change in scenery will be more interesting than looking at a gym wall for your whole workout.
We’ve come a long way since our childhood days of tossing a frisbee back and forth. Nowadays, we can take it to the next level with ultimate frisbee and disc golf! You and your friends can kill an afternoon throwing a disc for hours! Ultimate frisbee can be as relaxed or as competitive as you want it to be! Talk with your friends or game mates beforehand to keep things on a comfortable level for everyone. Prefer a slower pace? Hit your local disc golf course! Disc golf will keep you moving through various outdoor locations and allow for a fun, score-based game. Plus, the kids can play too! Throw a frisbee in your beach bag and get out there! Not good at traditional golf or find yourself bored walking the links? No problem! Closer to mini-golf than a full-blown golf course, disc golf could be the answer to your summer sports needs. Whatever your preference, summer sports are about getting out in the sun and having some fun. So do yourself a favor and spend the season with some time in the great outdoors. You may surprise yourself and find a new summer sport to love!