5 ways to keep your fitness over the summer

We know how tempting it is to go all out for an ‘amazing beach body’ then let it all slide as soon as the holiday kicks in – after all, when you’ve worked that hard to lose a few pounds and tone/bulk up, why shouldn’t you reward your efforts and give yourself a break?

Well, yes and no.

Having break for your fitness routine can actually be beneficial in some ways as it lets your body rest and heal, and can help you avoid plateaus and boredom. The problem comes when the holiday is over and you’re back to square one – or near as. Taking a week off probably won't make much of a difference but any more than that and it may be harder to get back to where you were. Did you know that your aerobic power can decline 5-10% in three weeks?

We’re not saying you shouldn’t enjoy your summer break to the full, just that you can make the return to activity easier if you don’t completely grind to a halt. Staying active will keep you fit, help you avoid weight gain from all that yummy holiday food and drink, and make the transition back to post-holiday life a little easier – physically, even if not emotionally.

Check out our ideas for summer fitness:

Rule the pool: When the weather’s this hot, what could be better than cooling off with some swimming, whether at your local centre, or in the hotel pool? If swimming isn’t your usual workout of choice, it’ll reach muscles groups that your normal routine doesn’t, and you can adjust the level of intensity to suit your mood and goals. Try these fat-burning swim drills if you’re trying to undo some holiday indulgences, or simply set yourself a specific distance target for the holiday to keep your fitness ticking over nicely.

Cycling: Getting out on your bike is a great way to explore a new holiday destination, while keeping your legs pumping. Need a challenge? Head for the hills to find the best panoramic view. Then enjoy the cooling breeze as you come back down again!

Walking: If your holiday means you’re lucky enough to have a sandy beach at your disposal, make full use of it and explore on foot. Soft sand is surprisingly hard to walk on (consider wearing shoes rather than flip flops or bare feet to minimise the intensity on your shins and calf muscles) so can burn twice as many calories as walking on flat ground. Try to walk at a fast pace, but take breaks if you need to.

Games: Traveling with kids? Turn their inevitable boredom to your advantage and play some sports. If you’re on the beach or a campsite, use the space to try variations on volleyball, cricket, frisbee or rounders. If you’re somewhere with sports facilities, try tennis or badminton. All of these sports will raise your heart rate and improve your cardio, as well as keeping the kids entertained – for a while…

Gym: Whether at the hotel or your local centre, you can always head to the gym to do some training in the coolness of the air con! And in August our joining fee is just £5. Find out more or join online so you can enjoy your holidays AND maintain your fitness!

Please be safe! If you’re going to be active outdoors in the heat, follow some simple steps: 

  1. Wear a hat and sun cream.
  2. Drink lots of water – before during and after activity.
  3. Stick to the shade when possible.

And read these tips for more strenuous exercise, like running.