Looking to add a little more fun to your workout – and maybe even make it more challenging? We can help you do both, all while you soak up some of that gorgeous end-of-summer weather. Let’s move your workout to the playground!
“Playgrounds aren’t just for kids,” says Healthy Lifestyles Coach Jessica Hunter. “You can get an amazing, fun workout! The great thing about a playground is that it’s free, and it’s also got built-in childcare! Plus, they are located everywhere – so there’s no excuse to not work out.”
Hunter has five moves to try using the playground as your gym. Aim for two sets of 12 to 15 reps (or as many as you can do):
1. Bench jumps
Stand facing a sturdy park bench with your knees slightly bent and weight in your heels, prepared to jump. Jump up onto the bench, landing softly with knees bent. Step back down one foot at a time to complete one rep. If a bench is too high for you to jump on, then find a low step or wall.
2. Swing rows
Face the swing and hold the chains so that your arms are extended straight out in front of your chest. Now lean back until your body is at a 45-degree angle to the ground. With your shoulders back, pull your body toward your hands, bending your elbows straight back. Then, in a slow and controlled move, lower yourself back to the starting position. (Make it more challenging by leaning back even farther at the beginning.)
3. Slide lunges
With your back to the slide, rest your right foot on the bottom of it and put your hands on your hips. Bend your left knee until your left thigh is nearly parallel to the ground – making sure your knee doesn’t go farther forward than your toes. Press through your left heel to return to the start. Do 12 to 15 reps, then repeat with the other leg.
4. Bench tricep dips
Sit on the edge of a bench, and put your hands at your sides (by your hips, fingers facing forward) and grab the edge. Lift your behind off the seat and take a few steps away from the bench. As you bend your elbows, lower your body until your upper arms are parallel to the bench seat, then push back up and repeat.
5. Monkey bar crunch
Hang from the bar and bring your knees as close to your chest as possible before lowering legs to slightly touch the ground. Continue to lift and lower for as many reps as you can.
Helpful tip: Bring along a timer to help you structure your workout. And consider some hand weights or a kettlebell to add variety, Hunter says. And don’t forget your water bottle!
Never stop playing
Keep your workout routine on track (and fun) with ideas from our Fitness Motivation Pinterest board.