Summer is here!
Bright skies and warm (trending hot) temperatures offer a prime environment for your weekly workouts.
We all know that exercise is good for both body and mind, but you don’t always have to hit the gym to get in a great workout.
There are a number of benefits to training outdoors, and when you experience firsthand, don’t be surprised if you start spending more time in nature this summer and less time at the gym!
Here are several ways to get out and exercise this summer!
Benefits of Summer Workouts
More Vitamin D
Vitamin D is one of the most common nutrient deficiencies across the globe. This is quite alarming as vitamin D is not only an essential fat-soluble vitamin, it’s also a critically important prohormone!
Modern life makes it easier than ever to never be outdoors…you can literally pick up your phone and have just about anything delivered to your front door within an hour (or less).
This has several unintended consequences, including reduced physical activity, vitamin D deficiencies, lack of social interaction, and increased feelings of isolation and depression.
Summer workouts get you outdoors and allow your body to naturally produce more vitamin D (our bodies synthesize vitamin D when exposed to direct sunshine).
With healthy vitamin D levels, mood is higher, stress is lower, and immune function is better.
If for no other reason this summer to spend more time outdoors, do it for your vitamin D needs!
Being outdoors is better for mental health. Studies show that spending as little as 20 minutes outdoors helps reduce stress and improves mood.
Additional research notes that more time spent outdoors was associated with a lower risk of depression and less use of antidepressant medication.
Exercise naturally lowers psychological stress, so why not get some added stress reduction by taking your summer workouts outside!
Exposure to sunlight helps set our circadian rhythm -- the master clock in our body that dictates our sleep-wake cycle.
Getting sunlight exposure, preferably early in the morning, helps align your circadian rhythm so that you feel more awake during the day and sleepier in the evening, helping you get better sleep each and every night, which not only benefits your physical performance (and transformation challenge results) but also your mental health and productivity at work or in class!
The Best Summer Workouts
When it comes to training outdoors, your imagination really is the limit.
You can modify your traditional cardio workouts and resistance training routines with some simple exercise substitutions and/or affordable training equipment such as a suspension trainer or kettlebell.
Other great options to spice up your summer workout plans are:
- Group fitness classes in the park
- Playground workouts
The Bottom Line of Summer Workouts
Summer is a great time to start training outdoors, but the truth is that (depending on where you live) you can train outdoors for most of the year.
Training in a gym can be fun and motivating, and it has been a workout for millions of people over the years. At the same time, that doesn’t mean you can get equal (or better) results by training outside.
Plus, there’s no reason you can’t get the best of both worlds by utilizing the gym for certain workouts and the great outdoors for other workouts. This will bring variety and help inject some enthusiasm and added challenge to your workout program, which can only help you get better results.
Keep in mind that training in hot environments will increase sweat rate, thereby increasing the need for additional fluid and electrolyte intake.
As such, make sure to hydrate properly for your summer workouts. If you struggle to consume enough fluids during the day, it can be helpful to sip on essential Amino acids, such as Her BCAA/EAA or His BCAA/EAA. Our amino acid supplements also have the added benefit of supporting muscle recovery and joint health!
If you’re looking for some added motivation to get outdoors this summer, then check out our Summer Transformation Challenge where we award $50,000 in cash prizes across 10 winners! Registration starts July 5th and the contest starts on August 1st.
To sign up for the transformation challenge, simply download the 1UP Fitness App where you can enter and join a welcoming community of other like-minded individuals and coaches to help you get the results you want.
Our Fitness App not only allows you to track your workouts and nutrition, but you’ll also get expert advice and customized diet and training plans based on your preferences, gender, and lifestyle!
We’ve also added some exciting new features to the app, including:
- Recipe Builder: build your favorite recipes and save them for frequent use!
- Water Intake Tracker: hydration is critical when training outdoors (especially if you live in areas where the temperatures regularly exceed 90 degrees)
- Diet Preference: Our fitness app offers coach recommendations, but you can also choose between popular diets including low-fat, low-carb, and keto
Click here to learn more about the 1UP Fitness App and how it can help you get better results starting today!
- MaryCarol R. Hunter, Brenda W. Gillespie, Sophie Yu-Pu Chen. Urban Nature Experiences Reduce Stress in the Context of Daily Life Based on Salivary Biomarkers. Frontiers in Psychology, 2019; 10 DOI: 10.3389/fpsyg.2019.00722
- Burns, A. C., Saxena, R., Vetter, C., Phillips, A. J. K., Lane, J. M., & Cain, S. W. (2021). Time spent in outdoor light is associated with mood, sleep, and circadian rhythm-related outcomes: A cross-sectional and longitudinal study in over 400,000 UK Biobank participants. Journal of Affective Disorders, 295, 347–352. https://doi.org/https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jad.2021.08.056