Healthy On The Road :: Give the Pool a Chance

[trip style = any]

{Editor's Note: Sometimes you don't have the extra space in your suitcase to bring workout paraphernalia, so Leah's "pool fit" options below are perfect for packing light AND staying on stride with your fitness schedule!}

The idea of exercising in water may conjure up unappealing images for you: swimming endless laps or flapping your arms in the shallow end with the old folks {while wearing a pink swim cap complete with chin strap and plastic flower}. But I challenge you to toss some of those preconceived notions aside and seriously consider this incredibly effective and travel-friendly form of exercise!

All you need is some chest or waist deep water {pools work best - though not-too-wavy lakes or oceans will do too} and a bathing suit. Other gizmos and gadgets such as water dumbbells and floatation belts are optional, but not necessary.

Give the pool a chance! Here are a few reasons why:
  • Efficient - You have to work harder to move through water, so you can get a better aerobic workout and burn more calories compared to performing similar “dry” exercises. Plus, water offers roughly 10 times more resistance to motion than air does, so will be working your muscles too!
  • Buoyant and safe - The buoyancy of water makes it a safer form of exercise for those who have back and joint problems and those who are pregnant, older or overweight.
  • Social - No need to abandon your friends and family to hit the gym, while you're in the water you can even chat {hopefully not too easily} to people lounging poolside.

Some pool fit exercises to get you started:
  • 1 - For max impact - Turn the below exercises into a circuit, or water run and/or walk for 20 minutes; the options are endless!
  • 2 - Water jumping jacks - Three sets of eight to 10 repetitions will increase your heart rate.
  • 3 - Kicks, jabs and punches - Interchange front kicks with back kicks, add jabs and punches to get the upper body involved in the exercise. Do this for a minute at a time.
  • 4 - Water angels - Like making a snow angel. Begin by laying on your back with legs together, hands at your side. Great for the abs!

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{When she’s not training clients or being trained by her dog Zuzu, Leah writes Healthy on the Road, published once monthly.}

More Healthy On the Road… Lifestyle Choices The INSANITY Workout Make Any Trip Style Healthy The 20-min Exercise Itinerary Healthy DIY Plane Snacks Hotel Room Exercises {You can do in your underwear}

[pool photo taken a qualia in Australia, other photos sourced online]