By Ashleigh VanHouten

For those of us not lucky enough to live in sunshine year-round, the summer months can make us a little crazy: all we want to do is go to the beach and eat our body weight in BBQ. Now, don’t get us wrong, that actually sounds like a pretty good way to spend the summer! But for those of us looking to stay fit and active in the steamy summer months, you don’t need to lock yourself up in the gym. Instead, enjoy the outdoors and be active at the same time with these fun ideas that will get your outside and active this summer. All you need is some sunscreen and your sunny disposition!

5 Unique, Fun Ways To Get Active Outdoors

Farmer’s Market Circuit Training. Regardless of the size of your city or town, chances are you have access to a seasonal farmer’s market. Check your city’s local listings, lace up your sneakers and stroll the stalls offering local produce, baked goods, meat and even locally produced art and jewellery. Sure, this might be the perfect stop before you hit up that BBQ, but it also may be one of the best ways to get fit and outside, all while shopping! Do calf raises while paying, keep your core engaged while walking and do bicep curls with your purchases. Want to step it up a notch? Put together your own circuit training routine (do squats at every stall that sells squash, do lunges at every stall that sells jam, etc!).

A circuit training routine to try today!

Stand Up Paddle Boarding. If you’re into canoeing, kayaking or surfing, how about a new up-and-coming water sport: stand up paddle boarding. It’s pretty much like standing on an oversized surf board, with a paddle while you guide your way through the water much like a canoe (but you’re on your feet). It’s an awesome exercise (especially for your abs!), and extremely versatile because you can do it in lakes, rivers, or the ocean – just hop into the nearest body of water and off you go.

Hot (Non-Bikram) Yoga. It’s tough going for a jog when it’s 100 degrees outside, but yoga in the heat is often just what our bodies need. Like in Bikram yoga, the heat helps to loosen our muscles allowing us to stretch and strengthen more effectively – but, unlike in Bikram, you (usually) get a much-welcomed breeze! Many yoga studios offer special outdoor classes in local parks during the summer months so check with your local studios to see when and where you can enjoy nature’s version of hot yoga!

Tips on finding the best yoga class for you!

Get Hiking. maybe this one isn’t so unique, but you can certainly make it your own: scope out local mountains or climbing sites and make a day of it, even go camping if you’re feeling outdoorsy. Bring friends, a picnic (and bug spray). It’s a way to get active without thinking “I’m exercising” the whole time – enjoy the shade, maybe get a peek of some local wildlife, and experience a part of nature you wouldn’t otherwise have seen. It doesn’t take a lot of specialized gear or skills, just a sense of adventure.

Farm Your Way Fit. If you’re looking for a more hands-on spin on outdoor fitness, get farming! Many farms offer volunteer opportunities where you can spend a day (or more, depending on how keen you are) learning about farming, harvesting, picking and general farming chores. In return, you usually get fed locally produced meals, learn valuable lessons on hard work and sometimes even get to leave with a box of fresh fruits or veggies to take home with you. Sounds like some good honest work, and a great way to get out of the city, to us!

Is local food really better for you? Find out here!

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