As much as I love to sitting in a lounge chair all day on vacation and soaking up the sun, my over 40 body likes to remind me that I shouldn't stay idle for too long!!!
WOULDN'T IT BE AWESOME IF PEOPLE WATCHING WAS CONSIDERED EXERCISE?!
If it was, the skin around my eyes would be super tight! (I'm just saying...) Unfortunately beach vacations, although glorious, (I am indeed a beach junkie), do heighten my awareness of what I may or may not be bringing to the beach that could potentially scare away small children and some nurse sharks.
Nothing motivates me to get to the gym more, than having to wear a bathing suit all day long! Recently on a family trip, we were in temperatures close to 100 degrees, and although we all love the warm weather, the intensity of it resulted in us utilizing only 1% of our suitcases. Wearing my bathing suit for breakfast, lunch and dinner the majority of days, was primarily the outfit of choice.
Now if I looked like Cindy Crawford awesome! Who wouldn't want to flaunt that look! However, some of us are not that blessed and have to do a little (or a lot of) work to feel comfortable with what we are putting on display all day! And although I did pop in the resort gym a couple times for some short bursts of cardio, abs and weights, swimming in various forms was what kept my family and I most active throughout the week.
Swimming and snorkeling is something we all enjoy doing but this summer we decided to up our game to scuba diving. We started this process with certified PADI instructors in the classroom, then moved into the dive pool and graduated to the open waters. (It was the only time in my boys life they were excited to get behind a school desk and pass everything so quickly!!!)
I was pleasantly surprised to learn that in addition to NOT DYING while doing it, I was also burning quite a few calories in the process. We only went 25 ft down which I personally felt was plenty however, learning that going a little deeper (40-100 ft) could give me even less gym time and more time at my favorite new eatery, BREAD and CHOCOLATE, (yes, can you believe it?) I'm seriously considering it.
In water we loose heat 25 times faster than on land. The body burns on average 70% of its daily calorie requirement keeping the body warm. So in water more energy is used up to keep warm, hence the high calorie burn when scuba diving.
Slapping an oxygen tank on your back may not light you up inside for your next workout and swimming in any regard may not be your cup of tea, but what I found to be more important is trying new things. Doing things out of my comfort zone isn't easy for me and yet recently I've found them to be the most rewarding. I would have never known that SCUBA diving could be such a calorie burn. And because of that, I'm sure there are a million other exciting ways to effectively get fitness in. For me, my goal is to stay creative to avoid becoming stagnate with something that is good for me and makes me feel better, even if it requires breathing support and a set of fins!
Feel free to share any of your own alternative exercise experiences!