One of the hardest things about exercising and working out is the fact that most of it lacks the element of fun. Sure, you can catch up on episodes of “Scandal” while on the treadmill, but the fact remains that you’re still on a treadmill, and that’s not much fun.
Thankfully, those who create and design workout methods and routines are constantly on the lookout for ways to keep us engaged in exercise. While these workout creations are becoming more fun, they still don’t fully replace immersive games and sports that are challenging, active, and highly entertaining.
If you’re bored with your current workout and would like to add something new to your routine, consider some of these fun activities that just happen to burn a lot of calories.
While many of us are known to play with flying discs (like Frisbees) at the beach or at a backyard barbecue, we might not know that an hour of Frisbee can burn over 500 calories. Of course you’ll have to maintain a steady playing pace for that hour, but if you have a high energy child or an enthusiastic dog, you might find that the hour flies right by.
For the really athletic flying disc enthusiasts, see if there is an ultimate league in your area. Played like rugby but with a disc in place of a ball, ultimate is a high-energy, fun way to work out.
Learning to ride a horse can be difficult, but it is also a very physically challenging pursuit. Ask an experienced rider if an hour in the saddle is a workout and they’ll overwhelmingly agree that it is. Almost every muscle in the body needs to be engaged to maintain the proper position in the saddle, as well as to control the 1,200 pound animal you’re sitting on.
An hour spent actively in the saddle can burn as many as 400 calories. A simple trail ride at a walk won’t be enough, however. You’ll need to really work yourself and your horse to achieve the maximum fitness potential that riding offers.
Hiking is one of the best ways to get out of a boring workout routine and into something new and different. However, if you really want to maximize your hikes you should consider hiking with a loaded pack.
A few heavy books or water bottles can act as weights, and as you hike with twenty or thirty extra pounds, you’re really taking your efforts to the next level. Your leg and back muscles get a great workout, and you’re raising your cardio benefits, too. Increase the weight over time for maximum results.
Whether you’re on ice or asphalt, skating is a fun and physical activity that can burn more calories than walking. Fast paced and engaging, skating is perfect for those who want to try something other than walking or running. It’s also relatively low impact so it’s easier on the joints.
Find a skating rink in your area and take the kids or your friends for a fun workout that strengthens your whole body.
It can be a real challenge to keep our workouts fun and exciting while maintaining their health benefits. Try some of these activities to reap the physical and mental rewards.