We all know about the more conventional and traditional ways to get in shape: running, push-ups, dieting – blah, boring, yuck. We all have a common goal – to get fit, look great & feel great. But no single method will get us all there. While some people thrive in the gym, completing sets and reps, pulling weights and working up a sweat, this method isn’t for everyone. And it’s easy to understand why.
Working full-time means scheduling your work-out for early mornings or late evenings when the sun goes down. It means heading outside for a run in the chilly breeze. It means fighting the urge to plonk yourself in front of the TV with a glass of wine after a long day.
And where there is no motivation, there is no action. When we’re tired, bored, not bothered, there is no action.
If you find yourself unmotivated and, therefore, unmoved by the regular fitness grind, try one of these alternative approaches to find something sustainable and reach those goals!
While hula-hoops have been around since the 1950’s, they tend to be viewed as a child’s pastime. However, when incorporated into a fun fitness routine, hula-hooping can help you lose at least three inches from your midsection!
First, start by making sure you have the right hula-hoop. You need to buy one that is designed for adults, not children. Adult hula-hoops are typically heavier and have larger diameters.
For hula-hooping beginners, invest in a hula-hoop that is at least 100 cm in diameter and half a kilogram.
Start with the standard hula-hoop waist spin until you get comfortable and grow your confidence with hula-hooping. After you get the hang of it, you can start to add more moves to your hula-hooping routine!
You can try hula-hooping while lounging, walking, and spinning your whole body. You can also use the hula-hoop as a jump rope or spin the hoop around your arms.
Hula-hooping is a super fun and effective work-out! This exercise will bring you back to your childhood and you will feel more like you are playing carelessly than working out.
And to make it even better, you can burn up to 250 calories after 30 minutes of hula-hooping!
For another fun exercise that might bring back feelings of nostalgia, try a skipping rope.
You can skip in almost any location, and the only equipment you need is, well, a rope – which you can buy for under $5.
Adding skipping to your exercise routine will help break up the monotony while serving as a great High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) workout that can burn about 1300 calories an hour!
Now, of course, it might be quite a feat to skip for a whole hour, but think about knocking out a few 10-minute sessions each day. You could loose around 216 calories during each short period – more than you can burn during a 10-minute run!
And because skipping is a bodyweight exercise, you can expect to develop long, toned muscles if you incorporate it into your regular routine.
And remember, the faster you skip, the more calories you burn and the greater results you see!
It’s easy to get overwhelmed in a shopping centre. Lots of people. Lots of noise. Lots of shops. But if you change your mindset, your local shopping centre can become your fitness hub and socialising hot-spot.
Mall walkers meet-up at shopping centres before they open and speed-walk through the empty halls and lanes.
Mall walking is great exercise as it involves speed-walking and gives you a great indoor arena to cover a lot of ground – no matter the weather.
As mall walking is generally completed by groups of people, you will find a de facto workout group that can keep you accountable and motivated!
But mall walking is no walk in the park. After keeping up a brisk pace for two hours, a mall walker can burn between 600 and 850 calories! And by incorporating a couple of mall walking sessions into your lifestyle, you are more likely to lose weight and keep it off.
If your local shopping centre hasn’t caught on yet, you can discover other walking groups in your area on Meetup. Simply pop in your location and search for walking groups.
Find out more about mall walking in Australia:
Swimming is an all-body workout that will help improve your coordination, balance, posture, and flexibility.
And staying motivated to swim isn’t hard as it’s an enjoyable exercise that can help you relax and de-stress after a long day or workweek.
And because this cardio exercise also involves resistance strength training, it will help you maintain a healthy weight while toning your muscles. Even a leisurely swim will burn at least 100 calories every 15 minutes.
But what if you can’t swim?
No problem! Treading water, water aerobics, and even just playing around in the water (pool, lake, ocean) can provide some of the above benefits. You can even burn over 500 calories by just walking through the water for an hour!
So head to a pool or lake and cool down while you burn off those extra pounds!
Some gyms will have indoor, heated pools you can use for exercise – so the cold is not an excuse this winter!
Walk With a Purpose
Sometimes, when all else fails, we need an extra push – an extra bit of motivation to get moving.
If this is you, try walking with a purpose. Walk a pet, walk to a cafe, walk to meet a friend, walk to post a letter, walk to the shops. It will save you money & give you an extra reason to get moving.
If the thought of walking on a treadmill is making you bored already, consider changing up the scenery with a walking trail or hike.
Getting out and about in nature not only gets you moving but is known to be therapeutic and relaxing; a natural de-stressor.
Some hikes offer gorgeous panoramic views, swimming holes to cool off in and photo opportunities galore. So join a walking group or venture out with friends and family. Pack some lunch for a picnic stop along the way and make a day of it.
Don’t be turned off by the word ‘hike’ – there are different distances and grades available for any experience level. Not to mention – they are beautiful day trips or even extended getaways. You can check out our favourite hiking spots in:
If you needed another reason to travel outside of your city and explore a new area, add getting fit to you list, as travelling can be a great way to get fit.
Make sure that you plan your trips around activities that involve walking, climbing stairs, hiking, swimming, or biking. You will be completing calorie burning and strength building exercises while having a great time and seeing new sights!
It won’t even feel like working out.
But while you are out, make sure to enjoy local cuisine that is light and healthy, so that you don’t eat back all the calories you burn during your exploration!
There are so many ways to make exercise fun and stay motivated. There is something different for everyone – it’s all about finding a method you enjoy. If you enjoy exercise, it’s no longer a chore you keep making excuses for.
Forget the dreaded gym. Forget the early morning wake-ups in the winter cold. Simply find your new pastime and start seeing lasting results!