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Fitness: Take it outdoors, and make it fun

Jill Barker Montreal Gazette 2017-04-24 17:31:55

    When it comes to exercise, “go big or go home” attitudes are celebrated. After all, there’s no such thing as a workout that’s too big or too tough. Right?

  If you think the traditional grunt, sweat and repeat routine is the only way to get ‘er done, it’s time for a reality check. There’s a lot to be said for workout goals that don’t require a mountain of gear, a mountain of time and a mountain of sweat, especially if your ultimate goal is to look good and feel good. So, in an attempt to simplify your workout routine, here are a few pointers geared toward shifting your exercise perspective from epic to just plain ordinary.

Limit your time in the gym

  For individuals who aren’t training toward a specific athletic goal, exercises like pushups, squats, lunges, deadlifts, burpees and box jumps offer plenty of bang for the buck and can be modified to include using more or less weight, power, balance or speed. As for the rest of the week, explore other ways to get your heart pumping and your muscles working.

Gear down

  Better gear doesn’t translate into a better workout. And more gear doesn’t translate into more workouts. In fact, it’s more important to accumulate exercise minutes than it is to accumulate exercise gear.

Smell the roses

  Put your phone down, leave your Fitbit at home and tune in to your body and the world around you. Learn to rely on your internal stats to measure exercise effort, distance and value instead of those supplied by a never-ending series of gadgets.

Get outside

  A lifestyle short on green and blue spaces is one that’s more prone to feeling the stress of everyday life. Set a goal of spending at least 25 per cent of your weekly exercise minutes enjoying fresh air and natural light.
Have fun

  And while the definition of “fun” may be up for debate among the “go big or go home” set, for simplicity’s sake I’ll suggest that anything that puts a smile on your face is fun. Anything that you find excuses not to do is not.