Summer is well and truly here, which means it’s the perfect time to exercise outdoors! Outdoor workouts are great because you can bathe in the glorious sunshine and reap the extra health benefits of the vitamin D exposure from the rays - just make sure you wear plenty of sun cream!
The Sundried Summer Workout can be done anywhere outdoors and doesn’t require any equipment so you can do it whenever the mood strikes. Maybe in your garden, while the kids play, or maybe in the park in an open space. Always remember to warm up properly before a workout and stay hydrated by always having a water bottle with you.
The first round is a small circuit comprising of 5 exercises. Aim to complete each exercise for 60 seconds with no rest. If you are a beginner or you have an underlying injury, take it at your own pace and rest whenever you need. If you want more information on how to do an exercise, click or tap the name of the exercise.
The second round is based on a Tabata style of HIIT training. HIIT stands for High-Intensity Interval Training and is a great way to burn fat and get fit. Tabata consists of 20 seconds of work followed by 10 seconds of rest, and you can repeat that as many times as you like with as many different exercises as you like. In this workout, you'll be completing 8 rounds (1 round = 20 seconds work and 10 seconds rest) to last 4 minutes with all different exercises. Go straight from one round to the next until you are finished.
Your final round is based more on body-weight strength training. You don't need equipment to have a good workout! Complete 3 sets of 10 reps on each of the following exercises with 30-60 seconds of rest in between each one. This is a full body workout which will target every muscle group. Take the exercises slow and perform each repetition with care, focussing on the muscle under tension.
Well done for completing the Sundried Summer Workout!
On completion of this workout, you should really be feeling the effects. If not, you can either work harder or make the exercises tougher. Remember, exercise is supposed to make you feel good about yourself, and you should fuel your body with nutritious food afterwards. If you find a particular workout boring, don't make yourself suffer by doing it. Find something you love, and you will find that staying fit has never been so easy.
For many people, holding a handstand is the ultimate sign of fitness and strength as well as being fun to practice and satisfying when you get it right. But it is a difficult move, so how do you train for it and how do you hold a handstand for a long time? Read our guide to find out!
How do you train to do a handstand?
Mastering a handstand is like mastering any skill; it takes a lot of time, practice, and patience. You will need to work on your strength, especially in the upper body and core, by doing other exercises and workouts, which will in turn help you to get better at holding a handstand for a long time.
One of the main muscles used when holding a handstand is the core. Your core (or abs) will be holding your legs steady and keeping you balanced. Do plenty of core workouts and ab exercises to strengthen this part of the body to help you stay balanced and hold your perfect handstand.
As well as your core, your upper body will be holding your weight so you will need to be strong in this area. Do upper body strength training as well as body weight training to train your upper body muscles such as your shoulders so that they are strong enough to hold your weight.
How do I practice a handstand at home?
Practising a handstand at home is easy and you have lots of options. The best way to practice a handstand at home is by using a straight wall that you can kick up against. By allowing the wall to support your feet and legs, you can get used to the feeling of being upside down and holding your weight on your arms. You might find this quite taxing, so practice holding a handstand against a wall for a few minutes each day until your upper body gets stronger.
Once you find holding a handstand against a wall easier, you can try kicking up near the wall, but not letting your feet rest on it unless absolutely necessary. Hold the handstand yourself for as long as possible, then let your feet rest against the wall. Again, practice this for a few minutes each day until it gets easier. Then you should be ready to practice holding a full handstand!
If you have someone that can help you, another option is having someone hold your feet for you. This can be very helpful as they can adjust how much support they give you until they are barely supporting you, but still giving enough that you don't fall back down. Practice this a few times each day, with your supporter loosening their grip each time until you are used to the feeling of holding your own weight.
How do you do a controlled handstand?
The secret to doing the perfect handstand is maintaining it for a long time and keeping it controlled. It may seem like it just takes practice, however you also need to have strong core muscles and good balance. These are both things you can work on to improve your handstand technique and keep it controlled.
The best way to do a controlled handstand is to take your time and use your muscles to support you, rather than kicking your legs up wildly and hoping for the best. Breathe slowly and focus on your muscles working, keep everything tight and control that handstand!
If you dread your workout, chances are you're not going to do it. Slogging away on a treadmill for hours may be good for your body but it's not great for your mind. We've put together 5 awesome ways to get fit and burn calories without even realising it!
Gardening is a great functional fitness workout as it will have you squatting down, stretching high, lifting your arms, and carrying heavy loads, all of which will challenge every muscle group in your body. A 140lb (10st) woman can expect to burn up to 300 calories from 1 hour of gardening!
This is a great way to keep fit as it is free, you don't have to leave the comfort of your home, and in the summer you will be exposed to revitalising vitamin D from the sunlight. Not only this, it's a great skill to develop and you will have a beautiful garden to show for your efforts!
2. Playing a musical instrument
It may not feel like it, but playing a musical instrument can be a very energetic activity. Especially instruments like the drums where you use your whole body to play, you can expect to burn between 100-300 calories in an hour!
Learning to play an instrument is an excellent skill to develop as it'll focus you mentally and this should help you in day-to-day life. Not only this, it can be very social as you can then join a band or orchestra to share your passion with others.
3. Playing with your children
It can sometimes feel difficult to exercise when you have kids as finding time can be almost impossible. Playing with your children by chasing after them in a park or playing football or another sport with them is an awesome way of getting fit yourself while also allowing your kids to expend all their pent up energy. Forget lifting weights, lifting your kids will give you a great workout without having to hit the gym!
Playing with your children gives you an opportunity to bond and you won't even notice how many calories you're burning. Another benefit is that you'll be helping your kids to get active from a young age which will really help them in the long run.
4. Walking the dog
If you have a furry friend or two, you can expect to burn up to 200 calories an hour by walking them. Depending on how energetic your dog is, you could even go jogging with them to help them exercise better.
By having the company of your dog, you won't feel as self-conscious while out and about and knowing that you have to walk them will be all the motivation you need.
Finally, spending time cleaning your house can be a great way of burning calories, toning up, and you'll have a beautiful sparkly house at the end of it! Just like with gardening, cleaning will act as a full body workout as you'll be squatting down to scrub low surfaces, reaching high, bending and twisting in all directions in order to clean. This will mean that all of your muscles are worked – even ones you may never have worked before!
Staying active is hugely important for both our physical and mental health. This quick 20-minute home workout is the perfect way to get moving without needing to find lots of extra time and can be done at home with no equipment necessary.
No Equipment Home Workout
Get fit, lose weight, improve your mental health. All in just 20 minutes!
30 seconds drop floor touch
30 seconds rest
30 seconds mountain climbers
30 seconds rest
30 seconds side steps with floor touch
30 seconds rest
30 seconds lunge kick through
30 seconds rest
30 sit up punch
30 seconds rest
Rest for 5 minutes then repeat!
Once the initial novelty has worn off, it can be hard to stay motivated when working out at home. Here are 5 top tips to help you maximise your workout time and get the best results with limited resources.
1. Change into activewear
It can be tempting to stay in your comfortably pyjamas all day and to even do your workout in them, but this won't help with motivation or with a good workout. Change into your activewear like you would when going for a run or to the gym so that there is a definite difference between rest time and workout time. Being comfortable and able to move freely will also improve the quality of your workout and will mean you won't be worried about working up too much of a sweat and ruining your comfy clothes!
2. Remove all distractions
When we're at the gym, we're able to just plug in our music, zone out the rest of the world, and get on with a great workout. Unfortunately, at home there might be any number of distractions from kids and pets to noisy neighbours or the temptation to have the TV on in the background. Eliminate as many distractions as you can so that you can focus on your workout and make the most of your exercise time.
3. Set a time and stick to it
When there is no clear line between your home space and your workout space, it can be easy to keep putting off your workout and finding other things to do. Set a specific time of day when you're going to work out and make sure you stick to it. If you're at home with a partner and children, let them know what time you intend to exercise so that they know not to bother you and allow you the time to get on with your training.
4. Choose your workout routine in advance
Making your workout up as you go along is never a good idea, even when going to the gym. By having a great workout routine already written down, you know that you'll have a meaningful workout and your time won't be wasted scrolling through your phone or thinking up the next exercise. It will also mean you're more likely to workout for longer and not give up after only a couple of exercises.
5. Have a dedicated space
One of the hardest things about being stuck indoors is that your home becomes your office, your canteen, your kids' school, and your gym. It can be difficult to get motivated to workout in your living room if this is a space you usually associate with relaxing at the end of the day, and it can become equally difficult to relax if you start associating certain spaces with educating your kids or working out.
Try to dedicate certain areas of your home for different chores and activities. Have a dedicated workout space away from where you usually relax. If you can't do this because you don't have enough space in your house, not to worry! There are ways around it, such as rolling out a yoga mat in your living room to turn it into your workout space, and then putting the yoga mat away again once you're done.