Don’t Like the Gym? Six Effective and Safe Workouts You Can Do in Your City

The gym. Maybe you just don’t have the time. Maybe you don’t enjoy being looked at while you work out. Or maybe you don’t want to pay hundreds of dollars a year to wait in line for the bench press.

Whatever the reason, there are fantastic (and easy!) ways to keep fit and healthy outside the gym. Check out these six workout styles for a toned body, extra energy, and a healthy lifestyle.

Run at parks
Many people find running on a treadmill or around their neighborhood boring and monotonous. We can’t blame them—and who wants to be bored while working out? Mix up your daily runs and job through your local park. Keep your runs varied in length and location, and you’ll find that you have more energy when you run.

Most parks have jogging tracks and sidewalks so you can run on level ground while enjoying the beauties of nature. For experienced runners, try to run more than one park during your workout.

Join a team
If you enjoy competition and meeting new people while you stay fit, join one of your city’s recreation teams. Many cities offer teams for soccer, softball, flag football, and more. The competition of a team can help you work out without really thinking about it—and sprinting to catch that fly ball is a lot more exciting and enjoyable than sprinting in your gym. Don’t worry if you don’t consider yourself an athlete: many rec league teams are more about staying healthy than winning every game.

Bike to work
If you live close enough, bike to work and while running errands. Cycling is one of the best exercises you can do—it builds muscle, burns calories, and improves your aerobic health. And it gets you out into the open air, which can boost your endorphin levels.

Biking can be convenient in a city, and most urban centers now have bike paths that keep you out of car traffic. You don’t have to pay for parking and rising gas prices, and you don’t have to deal with rush-hour traffic. You do have pay extra attention to other drivers, however. If you get injured by someone else while riding your bike, be sure to talk to a lawyer like Marc Johnston. You shouldn’t have to pay for medical bills due to injuries caused by a driver. Wearing a helmet and reflective gear can help prevent accidents, however.

Swimming is the best workout for anyone with damaged, achy joints. It can also help you regulate your breathing and lose weight. Most neighborhoods have a community pool with closed-swimming times, so you can jump into your lane without interrupting recreational swimmers. Join a water aerobics class for additional workouts.

Park your car a little farther away than you normally do—or, better yet, leave the car at home. Seek opportunities to walk by taking the stairs instead of the elevator or walking to your favorite lunch place instead of driving. Take walks when you’re finished with work and on the weekends. Break up long sitting periods in the office by walking around occasionally.

Exercise with TV shows, apps, or videos
There are many resources available to teach you how to work out effectively. Exercise videos can be both cheap and effective—and best of all, you can work out in the privacy of your own home. Don’t want to pay? You don’t have to. Your private library and YouTube have free exercise instruction.

The gym is not the key to a healthy, fit body—you are. Take control and exercise your way. You’ll be surprised by how effective working out in your city, on your time, in your way can be.

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