Winter is traditionally the sofa season and couch potato season. Even and especially when doing sports, you prefer to stay in the covered and heated area. Who wouldn’t prefer to train indoors than jog in the cold winter air in the rain? On the other hand, thanks to Corona, you are at home most of the time anyway. Any reason to go out is welcome, right? We deliver to you!
Hanging out in rooms and doing sports isn’t all that good for your health: Stuffy, dry heating air makes your body even more susceptible to infections. We’ll tell you why you should exercise outside more often, especially when the weather is not so warm, and how it works best. And if you want to train yourself slim and fit in 8 weeks without any equipment: Get our highly effective bodyweight training plan here.
What types of outdoor training are there?
The best known form of outdoor training is probably running. Real joggers do their runs in all weathers. Football and basketball can also be played well outside, but not every woman’s thing.
But real workouts are also possible – the world becomes an open-air gym. Our expert will show you how you can do a complete fitness program outdoors.
Why should you train outside?
Simply to do something good for the body. “We spend most of the day indoors. A little workout in nature is the perfect break from everyday life. Just me, my body and nature. That gives me freedom, clarity and a lot of power,” says Trainer Laura Helser. Your outdoor workouts are a mixture of strength, endurance and flexibility training in the fresh air. Why should you try that too? That’s exactly why:
What are the advantages of outdoor training, Corona or not?
There are 5 clear advantages that outdoor workouts have over studio workouts. They are all listed here:
1. Experience the seasons more consciously outside
The definition of outdoor training: “It is outdoor training as soon as you do exercises in the fresh air,” says coach Laura Helser. It can be running, yoga on the balcony or bodyweight exercises in the park. Attention athletes: this yoga is perfect for you.
So far, you’ve been one of those fair-weather athletes who only train outside in the sun? Stop it! “With outdoor training you really notice the seasons and can enjoy the weather, and sometimes the rain.”
2. Outdoor training offers more variety
Outside in the great outdoors you can do your training with completely different tools than at home or in the gym (which is closed anyway). You can be really creative with an outdoor workout:
“Large stones can be used as a kettlebell, you can jump over branches or use the park bench for step-ups, push-ups or dips. If you are looking for a challenge, you can do squats with a large branch. Stairs are great for short sprints. Just have a look around and think about what you can incorporate into your training, “says Helser.
In this way, you set different stimuli in every training session and quickly improve through the varied conditions. An uneven surface challenges the ability to balance and coordinate even more, which also costs more strength. And of course your creativity is also stimulated.
3. Outdoor exercise strengthens the immune system
Always sick, tired and somehow limp? Regular outdoor units can help here too. That sounds paradoxical at first, but on the one hand you no longer just breathe in the stale heating air. On the other hand, the combination of exercise and fresh air has a positive effect on the immune system.
“It has been proven that exercise in the fresh air strengthens the immune system. Especially in autumn and winter the cold stimulus hardens and reduces the risk of colds by up to 50 percent,” says Helser. Sounds strong right? While we’re at it: You can find out here how lemon water strengthens your immune system.
In addition, the blood circulation gets going, the blood is pumped full of fresh oxygen, the nutrient supply runs more smoothly and the inflammation values stay where they should be: down. And no one can defend themselves against the extra portion of sunlight. After all, the body needs light to make vitamin D and this is known to be a real good mood booster.
4. Exercise in the fresh air reduces stress
“Taking time out alone is good for dealing with stress,” explains the personal trainer. “The fresh air provides the body with an optimal supply of oxygen. Exercise and the improved blood circulation ensure that we move from tension to relaxation. With a lot of stress, even a short walk can make an enormous difference.” Because when training in front of the door there is no time to think about the stressful everyday life. Our tip: Use this playlist to train your stress away.
In the open air, attention is more where it should be: on the body. Because it is easier for you to relax outside – the noises and smells calm the nerves and have an invigorating effect. You certainly have no objection to the nice feeling of sun on your skin.
Which doesn’t mean you should stay home because of heavy cloud cover or a bit of drizzle. This option only applies to official severe weather warnings. Otherwise any weather suits the outdoor fitness project. Really every.
5. Outdoor exercise encourages self-love
If you throw yourself into your workout clothes on a rainy day and power off outside, you will feel like superwoman afterwards. You may know this feeling when you were surprised by the rain while jogging. At first, the rainfall makes you dejected. But shortly afterwards, things just run even better. The feeling after the little shower is simply unbeatable. And do you already know Yoga Nidra? This is how the body journey increases your well-being.
It really doesn’t matter whether you are soaking wet after training and look like a doused poodle. This was also confirmed by a British study by Anglia Ruskin University. According to this, exercise in nature increases your satisfaction with yourself. “Spending time in nature can help to get a better feeling for your own body and draws attention to our abilities rather than looks,” it says Study. So let’s get out and party yourself again!
This makes your outdoor training mega-effective
Convinced? Excellent! How you optimally organize your outdoor training depends entirely on your training goal. If you just want to get fitter, you are well advised with a mixture of strength and endurance.
The HIT method is particularly suitable for outdoor training. “For example, with 45 seconds of exercise and 15 seconds of rest,” recommends trainer Laura Helser. “Beginners can also start with 30 seconds. The only important thing is that you fully power yourself during this time. According to this principle, you can create your own outdoor circuit with 4 exercises.” And here we show you 10 great exercises for the whole body.
Outdoor training: these are the best exercises
Trainer Laura Helser told us the best exercises for outside: “My outdoor workouts are circuit training consisting of 7 exercises. They are powered by 60 seconds in 3 rounds, in between there are 20 seconds of buffer exercises such as jumping jacks – there is a break Not.” These 7 exercise classics are always included (depending on the training level in the easier or advanced variant):
1.Dips on the park bench (with legs bent or stretched)
2. Squats or jumped squats
3. Bench press-ups (high edge or low edge)
4. Lunge steps (with 10 pound dumbbells)
5. Battle ropes or burpees
7. Plank or Commandos
“The most important thing is to combine the exercises as varied as possible. At the end of the outdoor training there is always the team challenge where we try, for example, to hold the plank together for 3 minutes,” says the coach.
You need these training devices for your outdoor training
In all honesty: actually none at all. You can also work outside with just your own body weight without any problems. But if you do want to build in tools, small devices are perfect for outdoor training. “I always have kettlebells, dumbbells, battle ropes, medicine balls and resistance bands with me for my workouts,” says Helser. Here we reveal what you should look out for when buying a kettlebell.
You are not traveling with a handcart and you have no way of bringing so much equipment with you? No problem. Just use what you find outside: walls, trees, benches and of course the ground.
Is outdoor training suitable for beginners?
Absolutely! The great thing is that you can determine the training level yourself. Instead of sprinting, you can run, and push-ups are easier on the bench. “Each exercise can be modified to its own level. After just 2 to 3 weeks with 2 outdoor training units each, my participants notice a great increase,” says Helser.
Do you now need one last motivational booster to start your first outdoor training session? Then look for a strong team. It’s even more fun with like-minded people. Because: “There is nothing more motivating than pushing the boundaries of your own comfort zone during outdoor training together piece by piece.”
Outdoor training: this clothing is suitable
That depends of course on the season and the temperatures. In any case, the sportswear should be weatherproof, breathable, and you should feel comfortable in it.
“In winter I wear lined leggings, longsleeves and wind blockers. Just no down jacket! If you keep moving, that’s no problem. Just keep your breaks short and after your workout you can quickly go home to the shower before you get cold.”
Exercising outdoors requires nothing but a little time and the right clothes. With our tips and exercises you can get started right away. So go ahead, what are you waiting for?