4 Top Destinations for Workout ‘FUN’

May 4, 2010 by  
Filed under The Fitness Bug

The workout environment theme

Yes, I’m not finished with the workout environment theme just yet. Like I said before, your environment will have a huge impact on your ability to stay motivated. And from what I have found out, lack of motivation is the no.1 reason why people stop working out.

The Cure?

Keep it fun and interesting!

Think of your workout regime like a long lasting marriage. The honeymoon period is always great. Everything is fresh and new in the beginning, and then 6 months later, things become stale. What you liked about it in the beginning just doesn’t do it for you any more. So… you need to recycle.

And in the famous words of loopy comedian Chris Rock,

*Recycle that P***Y*!!

However, I won’t be so vile with my words… this time :).

The best way to stay motivated is by NOT making your workouts feel like a chore. Treat your workouts like any other fun activity that you do in your spare time.

How can you do that?

Take one of those activities and incorporate your workouts into it. And today I’m taking an activity which I know each and every one of you will approve of, and if you could do it 24/7 365, you would.

TRAVEL

+ Workout

Before I continue, think back to the days when you were in school. What was your favorite subject?

P.E (Physical education)

I’ll say that again… ”Physical Education”

That means that every time you took that lesson, you were essentially working out… right?

AND YOU FOUND IT TO BE FUN!!

So much that you placed it at the no.1 spot, above all other lessons.

So what happened after school life?

How did all that physical activity become boring?

Answer?

Physical education never did become boring. You’ve just probably taken the ‘fun’ out of it!

It’s a bit like when you trade something you are passionate about for money. Once that happens, you lose the very essence of why you do it.

Now don’t be mistaken. You do need to focus on results and goals when you workout. But I truly believe that to stay motivated and to lead a GREAT bodybuilding life, you need follow this formula,

Fun activity (Mountain biking, Dancing…) + Workout

(The best example of this is having sex! We all know how much of a workout that can be… don’t we :))

But back to today’s activity.

Travel

We all like to travel. And why not!! The world is full of wonderful places which all of us should attempt to see throughout our lifetime. But if you are anything like me, you won’t just travel to just go on vacation. You’ll checkout all of the other bonuses that the said destination has to offer.

  • Business opportunities
  • Women/ Men
  • Quality of life
  • And others

But in regards to working out, you’ll also probably checkout what that said destination has to offer, differently from the norm.

Now, it’s impossible for me to list ALL of the great places to workout ‘for fun’ across the world, because,

  1. I’ve only travelled to several countries.
  2. I couldn’t possibly visit all of the great and unique places to workout (other than your everyday gym).

But what I will do is list the great places that I have been to, to workout ‘for fun’ and the benefits at each destination.

Let the ‘FUN’ Begin

Hyde Park – London

To test your true cardio ability (Treadmills are for wimps)

The City Life

London might not be the grandest city in the world, but it is filled with city life, as we all know it. If you do come to stay in this city, then Hyde Park is still one of the best spots to take a run and perform your bodyweight exercises. It’s,

  • Large in size
  • Green
  • Cosmopolitan
  • Full of plenty of ‘chill out’ spots

And you can always head back into the city to wind down.

There is nothing too special going on here. But it beats being stuck in the gym all of the time and you get to test your true running ability in the outdoors, the way it should be.

Miami – South Beach Park

(GTA Vice City – Sorry. I had to slip that in… I love that game!)

  • Meet the opposite sex ‘The sexy Kind’
  • Kill two birds with one stone. Beach + City nightlife
  • International Culture

If London bored you, then prepare to be excited. Welcome to Miami (Sings) … South Beach.

Now, I do like to be known as a ‘city guy’ as I’ve been raised in the fast paced western world. But I also like to be a beach boy, especially when I want to get away from it all.

South Beach Park provides the best of both worlds. We all know how much of a video games enthusiast I am. If I go back in time in video games world, then the beach area in Grand Theft Auto Vice City best represents this mix.

Taking a run down in the South Beach area is no one-dimensional workout affair. Add

  • Nightlife
  • International Culture
  • Sun, Sea, Sand
  • Hot Women

And the ‘fun’ aspect really does need no explanation here.

Thailand – Island Koh Samet

  • Slower lifestyle, away from hustle n bustle of city life
  • Beach night life (Like… In a land of nowhere!)
  • International culture

Locations like these are the reason why Thailand continuously keeps finding it’s way into my favorites list. There are many great beach destinations across the globe, but when you add that Thai culture to it, this place really does stand out from the rest.  The start of a normal day on this Island would begin early in the morning. This is the perfect time to get a workout out in.

Two Reasons

1) Get out before the midday heat kicks in (Get the ‘workout’ part of your day done)

2) To get rid of what you consumed the night before (You’ll see what I mean shortly)

The Fun

Remember, the name of the game here is fun. So when you go out on your early morning run, you won’t just be running. You’ll be lapping up the scenery, the atmosphere and will want to hug the beach as you run. The great thing about the beach run is that you’ll reap the benefits of running on sand.

Running on sand is a great way to build strength endurance in your legs (Read this post for the full low down)

You’ll probably meet some other expats too, along with the locals. With all of that happening, you definitely won’t feel like you are working out, and once the midday heat does kick in, you can get ready for part 2… splashing around in the sea. All in the name of fun and fitness!

More Fun

My favorite part!

The fun really does begin once it hits 7.00pm. After all of the daytime fitness activities, it’s only fair that you get to wind down. You’ll get to meet PLENTY of internationals and show off that body too :). I’m not going to bore you with MY experience. I’m just going to show and tell.

Tell

  • Smoke Shisha (If you are into that)
  • Eat GREAT food while watching the big screen (On the beach)
  • Nighttime strolls on the beach (You’ll see others doing it too)
  • Open bars and partying ALL night
  • Outdoor Party games

Wake up and get rid of what you consumed the night before 🙂

Now that’s what I call fun and fitness.

Show

Do pictures really speak 1000 words? You tell me.

India – Kerala

(The land of the coconut)

TRUE peace of mind!

A few years back, I found myself in India on a business trip. But in true Shaun Sinclair fashion, I don’t just travel for business… that would just plain suck. If you do travel ‘just’ for business, then you better fix it, otherwise you will grow old, look back at your life and realize the journey was all a big waste!

Anyhow, I decided to take a detour and I ended up in this place. I am always on the search to try new things in this journey we call life and this time really was a true ‘Yoga’ affair.

I’ve talked about the benefits of yoga once before (Here). But taking up yoga in a place like this really does not compare. It’s quite similar to the feeling you get in Koh Samet.

You might perform yoga back home, but when you come to Kerala, add this

  • Native spices and Teas
  • Easy going locals (Walk slow… you’re not in the city any more)
  • Mind and body martial arts on display (people watching – just watching them is great for the mind)
  • Practice yoga in ‘out of this world’ surroundings (Jungles, Rivers, Palm trees)
  • Wind down in the health resort (Musical programs, Individual consultations with a doctor)

Yoga will always be great at relaxing your mind and body, and will help take away a lot of stress that you would have built up throughout your everyday bodybuilding activities. But when you visit places like this, you won’t just have fun. You’ll leave with an unforgettable life experience.

THIS IS WHAT I CALL THE STAY-FIT BUG BODYBUILDING LIFE STYLE!!

HOWS THAT FOR FUN AND FITNESS?

Like I’ve said, there is no way that I can list all of the great places out there that can make for a fun workout experience while you are away on vacation (or not). In fact, you could probably educate the rest of the stayfitbuggers on some great locations that you know of, and the benefits of each. Let’s just not forget the real reason for encouraging these types of activities….

To keep your workouts fun and engaging without making them feel like a chore!

See you in the comments.

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Unique bodyweight exercises

September 17, 2009 by  
Filed under The Fitness Bug

bodyweight exercises

As of this month, it has been reported that we are now climbing our way out of the recession. But for many that doesn’t mean s***, and many people are still broke and struggling. If you fall into that category, you might have made cut backs on spending, and going to the gym may have been one of the things you cut back on, which is a worry as everyone from me to Aviva (check ’em out at http://www.aviva.co.uk/) are telling you the best way to be is to stay in shape. If so then it is your lucky day, as today I will be describing some unique bodyweight exercises that will allow you to maintain that sweet body that you have built up.

Advanced bench dips

bench dips

  • Difficulty: 4/ 10
  • Time to master: 2-3 weeks

Although this exercise isn’t too demanding on the triceps, it is still demanding enough that you will need to have a decent amount of current tricep strength to perform it.

Instruction

  • Find a bench and a wall
  • Place your hands on the bench, shoulder width apart and push your feet against the wall so that your legs are straight and roughly in line with the bench.
  • Put your feet against the wall, lift your arms up straight and lower yourself down until your elbows are at a 90-degree angle.
  • Hold this position for a second or two, and then back to the starting position.
  • Repeat

What makes this exercise unique is that instead of having your feet placed on the ground, they are up against the wall. Having your feet up against the wall means that your triceps will have to lift more weight. If you want to get creative then you can always place some weight plates onto your lap.

Full hanging leg raise

  • Difficulty: 6/ 10
  • Time to master: 2-3 months

Now normal leg raises can be a bit of a challenge for sure, you,

  • Grab a pull up bar.
  • Raise both legs together up to a 90-degree angle.
  • Lower your legs and repeat.

But now that you have no money to go to the gym, you have to up the ante a little.

Introducing the full hanging leg raise!

hanging-leg-rasie
The difference with this exercise is that instead of lifting your legs to a 90-degree angle, you must now lift them all the way up to the bar until your feet touch the bar. This will be a challenge yes, but once mastered, it will give you an increase in strength, flexibility and control over your body, along with perfecting those lower abs.

If you find that you are not able to get your feet all the way up, take your time and build up to that progression until you do reach the bar.

The Ab wheel roll out

  • Difficulty: 9/10
  • Time to master: 3- 6 months

This exercise is very similar to the exercise ball roll out exercise from yesterdays post. Again, it might look pretty simple to perform, but once you reach those last few reps, the burn really does catch you by surprise. Now the normal ab wheel roll out looks like this,

ab-wheel-rollout

  • Begin by kneeling on the floor, and hold both sides of the wheel.
  • Roll the wheel forward, and lower your body as far as you can without arching your back.
  • Use your abs to pull yourself back to the starting position.

The unique version looks like this,

ab-rolloutab-rollout

The difference now is that only your feet and hands are on the floor. The real burn here is when you return from the extended position. That is where you will suffer, but master this exercise and you will see improvements in your strength on all parts of your body.

One legged squat

one-leg-squat

  • Difficulty: 6/10
  • Time to master: 2-3 months

Now we can test if all of that squatting with weights in the gym has or has not improved your functional strength. This is the best leg exercise that you can do with your body weight. Some may even go, as far as to say that it is the best leg exercise of the lot! But here’s how you do it,

  • Stand straight.
  • Hold one leg out in front of you.
  • Hold both arms out straight in front of you.
  • Lower your self down on one leg.
  • As you reach the ground, tense your butt and stomach muscles.
  • Hold the position briefly.
  • Rise back up and repeat.

This exercise is all about balance, but once you master this one, you will build real true strength for sure.

I am without a doubt a bodyweight exercise enthusiast, but that is also a good thing for those of you reading this. Why? Because I don’t want you to end up being the ‘king’ of the gym who can’t manage to do a single pull up. That is no real king in my eyes.

These bodyweight exercises will help you build real strength, and better yet, you will be building muscle and strength on the cheap in the space of your own home. So follow these exercises through and you will succeed in your strength gaining efforts.

See you in the comments.

You can now grab the Unique Bodyweight Exercises Ebook here.

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