Summer is right around the corner and you might be eager to work some new cardio exercises into your routine.
No matter if you are working towards a killer beach body or if you want to improve your overall health, doing some sort of cardio exercise several times a week is a great way to get yourself in shape.
No matter if you’re looking for exercises to do outside in the summer heat or if you prefer to stay indoors in the cool of the air condition, you have some great cardio options available to you.
Benefits of Cardio Exercises
Cardio exercises get your heart pumping and your large muscle groups moving. Most people need either 150 minutes of modern cardio exercise each week or 75 minutes of vigorous cardio exercise each week.
Participating in cardio exercise comes with a large number of benefits. It helps improve your overall cardiovascular health, which can help lower your blood pressure and reduce your risks for a heart attack. It can also help lower your blood sugar levels.
It can also reduce asthma symptoms, strengthen your immune system, boost your mood, and help you sleep at night. And, of course, it also helps you maintain your weight. If you’re actively trying to lose weight, you may need to also change your diet and incorporate additional exercise into your routine.
And, a huge benefit of cardio exercise, is that it is safe for almost everybody! Cardio exercises can be adjusted in intensity to meet your needs. Plus, there are so many different types of cardio exercises out there that you’re sure to find the right one for you.
Tips for Exercising in the Summer
Just remember! You might be sweating even more than usual due to the summer heat, so always make sure to drink plenty of water before, during, and after exercising so that you stay hydrated. While the amount of water you need will vary depending on factors such as weight, most people need to drink about two liters of water a day. To make sure you’re drinking enough water during the day, consider carrying around a reusable water bottle.
Also, if you’re exercising outside, wear plenty of sunscreen. Even on cloudy days, the sun’s rays can damage and burn your skin. Exposure to UV rays can increase your chances of skin cancer. Sunscreen helps protect your skin from these dangerous UV rays. Just remember, even if a sunscreen is water-resistant, you should still apply it regularly when sweating or in the water.
You should also be mindful of the clothes you wear when exercising in the summer. Wear light-weight clothing, which will allow more air to circulate over your skin, naturally cooling you down. Also, stick with light-colored clothing. Dark-colored clothing absorbs heat, which will make you even hotter!
If at any point during exercising you start to feel sick or faint, stop what you’re doing. There is a chance you’re dehydrated, overheated, or suffering from heatstroke. Move to a shaded or cool area and drink plenty of water.
Top Five Cardio Exercises to Enjoy This Summer
Looking for some great summer cardio exercises? Look no further…
Go for a Run
Running is one of the most popular forms of cardio exercise available because it is convenient and can be done anywhere. You can go for a run around your neighborhood, a local track, or even on the local trails. Take things at your own pace. Even going for a quick jog each day can help improve your cardiovascular health and maintain your weight.
During the summer months, try to schedule your runs for early in the morning or in the evenings, before things get too hot. You may also want to rotate running with a lower-impact exercise, such as swimming.
Visit the local pool
Going for a swim is not only a great way to cool down during the hot summer months, but it is also good for your heart! Swimming laps is also a good way to increase your overall fitness because it provides you with a total body workout. Just remember, you have to actually swim around the pool for it to count as exercise!
Many people enjoy swimming as an exercise because it doesn’t put pressure on their joints, which makes it safe to do every day. Swimming is an exercise that many people that suffer from chronic pain enjoy. This is because it doesn’t place additional stress on their joints and muscles, but also helps them begin to build muscle strength.
Try out an aerobic class
If you prefer to stay indoors, look for a local aerobic class. Aerobic exercises vary from low intensity to high intensity. And when you take a class, you have the chance to work with a trained professional who can adjust exercises to meet your fitness needs. There are aerobic classes designed for beginners, but also intense aerobic classes for those seeking a serious workout.
Aerobic classes can also help you remain accountable for exercising! Many people struggle when exercising on their own, but aerobic classes allow you to gain a support system. Exercising with friends or under the guidance of a trainer can provide you with a much-needed boost of encouragement!
Box indoors or outdoors
Boxing is another good cardio activity for those that prefer to stay indoors during the summer months. Boxing is another exercise that can be adjusted to meet your level of fitness, especially if you’re working with a trainer. You’ll also find that boxing is a good way to tone your stomach and your arms.
Many people also find boxing a great stress-reliever, as hitting a punching bag can help you release some of your pent-up emotions! In fact, cardio exercise in general is a good way to boost your mood. Not only does exercise release endorphins (the hormone that brings about euphoria), but it also gives you something else to focus on other than the stressors in your life.
Give rowing a try
Finally, if you’re hoping to get out on the water, but you’re not too keen on swimming, maybe give rowing a try. Rowing works both your heart and your upper body, allowing you to build core strength. Just remember, if you’re using rowing as a form of exercise, you will need a boat with a sliding rigger setup, so that all your muscles are utilized.
Or if you would prefer to stay inside, you could also try using a rowing machine, which is a type of cardio equipment that is designed to give you the same level of resistance that you would feel if you were rowing on the water.
Go for a hike
Hiking is yet another activity that is great for your cardio health, as well as can be adjusted to meet your fitness level. If you dislike the idea of working out in a sweaty gym, hiking is a great way to get outside and enjoy nature. Just make sure to familiarize yourself with the trails before heading out and bring a day pack with necessary supplies.
If you are just beginning to exercise, go for a short hike on a local trail. Many beginners often feel more comfortable when they bring a friend with them. Once you’ve gone for a few local hikes, start looking for longer trails. You may even be inspired to visit the same trails again in a different season.
Enjoy a bike ride
Cycling is another good low-impact cardio exercise, limiting the stress on weight-bearing joints. You can take things at your own pace. Those who are just starting their weight-loss journey can enjoy riding at a slower speed. Once you’ve started building up your endurance, you can increase your speed.
Summer is a great time to get out and explore some of the paths through your town or city. Or, you can take your bike to a nearby nature trail, and enjoy spotting wildlife as you ride. Just make sure that bikes are allowed on the trails. If you would rather stay indoors, there are also indoor exercise bikes available that replicate the resistance you would feel if using a regular bike.
The Bottom Line
Your cardio options for this summer are endless! The summer months are a great time to get outside and try out a new form of exercise. And the great news is that many of these can also be continued into the cooler months. For example, even swimming can be enjoyed in the winter months if you can find an indoor pool!
If you’re just starting to exercise for the first time, make sure that you take things nice and slow. This will allow you to start slowly improving your overall fitness levels. Some beginners also break their exercise sessions up into several smaller sessions throughout the day.
Find an exercise and intensity level that works for you. If needed, consult with your doctor or a certified gym trainer. They’ll be able to help figure out what type of cardio exercise is most appropriate for you and can help you establish an exercise routine that works for you.