Over the years’, people have been trying to find new ways to stay fit. In the early 2000s we were introduced to Zumba. Zumba is a Latin-based dance that is meant to be fun and a fast way to burn a lot of calories. A few years later, the CrossFit community took the fitness world by storm. Crossfit is a group workout that strives off of competitiveness and team motivation. In today’s society, everyone wants to find a new way to stay fit and enjoy doing it at the same time. We have had different workout trends that have grabbed a lot of attention over the past few years. Here are a couple of examples that I came across: outdoor activities and wearables.
Outdoor activities are becoming a very popular way to exercise nowadays. There are so many different ways you can be active outside. A few things that I found to be very effective and enjoyable are; hiking, joining an adult sports team (basketball, softball), and kayaking. Any activity outside where your face isn’t buried in your phone is an outside activity.
I try to go to the gym a few times a week, but I hate getting stuck in the same routine. This is why I turned to outdoor activities for working out. I love going on hikes with my dog. Hiking is great exercise, and while you are doing it, you don’t feel like you are really working out. The one thing I love about going on hikes is it is never the same thing. I go to the same state park every time, but each time I find myself on different trails with new views. A benefit I have found from hiking is it works out parts of your body you wouldn’t think about doing in the gym. I have also learned that going on hikes is not only good for your physical health but also your mental health. If you are stressed out going on a hike can really help clear your head. In an article from the Huffington Post written by Abigail Wise says, “Being out in nature, away from the business of our daily lives and technology, can allow people to connect with themselves and nature in a way that brings about peace and a sense of well-being.”
Another outdoor activity would be to join an adult sports team. I joined a men’s softball league in my hometown, and I could not be happier with my decision. At first, I thought it was going to be a joke, but it turned out to be very competitive. Playing in this league has helped me keep my competitive edge. It is not the hardest workout, but I had a lot of fun playing, and if I broke a sweat it was an added bonus.
The last outdoor activity I found was kayaking. Kayaking is a low-impact activity that can improve your aerobic fitness, strength, and flexibility. Kayaking can be done as a hobby, a competitive sport or as a fun activity when you have free time. You can paddle on rivers, lakes and the sea. Over the summer, I try to go a few times a week. My favorite time to go is early in the morning or late in the evening. Kayaking is an unbelievable workout. It works out all of your upper body muscles and your lower back. Kayaking is a great form of exercise but it is also very calming. Like hiking, kayaking can help relieve stress. There something about gliding on top of the water that gives you a sense of satisfaction. And if you are lucky enough, a pod of dolphins might join your ride. This past summer a pod of dolphins started swimming right next to me for about a mile. They were using my wake to play with and even jumping in the air in front of me. It was one of the coolest experiences I’ve ever had.
Wearable technology is a new device that people wear that tracks their fitness throughout the day. These devices are able to track information related to fitness and health. “Wearables are the future. We may all be flashing some type of wearable device in 2020, but most of us don’t own one today. In fact, only one in five owns a wearable device now,” according to a new report from PricewaterhouseCoopers. There are many different companies that make wearable fitness devices. Such as Fitbit, Garmin, and Apple, these are the three most popular wearables you will see people sporting. Fitbit was launched in 2007 and the company hasn’t looked back since. The mission for the company is as follows: “To empower and inspire you to live a healthier, more active life. We design products and experiences that fit seamlessly into your life so you can achieve your health and fitness goals, whatever that may be.” Fitbit is a great product, but like they says in the mission statement, “Fitbit is an experience.” Anytime someone with a Fitbit walks outside, the Fitbit tracks his or her every step, which makes the consumer feel great about himself or herself each and every time he or she walk out the door.
The next wearable I found was the Garmin Forerunner 235. According to garmin.com, “The Garmin Forerunner 235 has accurate GPS for tracking runs and a 24/7 wrist-based heart rate monitor. It can track all-day activities like steps and sleep and can display notifications from iPhone and Android devices. It’s water-resistant and can be worn in the shower or while swimming.” The Garmin Forerunner is great for athletes or people at all levels. If you are looking for something to track your everyday routine, the forerunner will do that. If you are an athlete who runs, swims, and bikes, the Forerunner can track all that too.
The last wearable is the Apple Watch. The Apple Watch is not fitness wearable specifically, but it is able to download fitness apps. The app to download on the Apple Watch is Sworkit. Sworkit is a great fitness app, and once you download the app, you set a time that you want to work out every day and it will send you a motivating message saying, “Time to kick some ass.” The Apple Watch is also great because while being used during a workout, you can still get notifications such as text messages, emails, and even phone calls.
As the years go on, fitness trends will change again and again just like any other trend. What I have found in my research and personal experience is getting fit doesn’t have to be rocket science. So if you are trying to get healthy you don’t have to get a gym membership. Just get outside and go on a hike, join an adult sports team, and get a wearable to track your fitness. These are steps that I have taken to get back into shape after playing college athletics.