Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Move Your Strength Training Outdoors

Long, sun-filled days mean saying so long to a stuffy gym and hello to biking, swimming, and outdoor exercise. That's great for cardiovascular fitness, but without resistance training, muscle tone can vanish like ice cubes in July.

"People think they can build muscle only in a gym," says Tina Vindum of Outdoor Action Fitness in Mill Valley, Calif. "But it's easy and more fun to do it outside."

What's more, you may get faster results. Research shows that taking your workout outdoors can rev up the intensity without making it feel harder.

For even more oomph, grab a friend. The partner moves in this workout are more challenging, so you'll firm up in no time.

For a safe, effective buddy workout, talk a lot. Can't complete a full set? Say so. Too easy? Ask your partner to provide more resistance. Do two sets of eight to 12 reps of each move, unless otherwise noted. Always warm up with five to 10 minutes of walking, and stretch afterward.


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