It might seem a little goofy, but going through your daily run in reverse can totally transform the way that you’re working your body. For starters, going backwards forces you to use a whole different set of muscles in your legs than you do when you run forward; primarily, you’ll strengthen your calves, quads, and shins. Running backwards can also up your calorie burn by up to 20 percent, and may help improve your posture since you won’t be prone to slouching forward at the waist as is typical when you’re running regularly.
Pole dancing might not be the first thing that comes to mind when you’re thinking up fresh new ways to work on your fitness, but there’s more than a few reasons why it might just deserve to be. Not only does performing a routine on the pole burn a ton of calories in a short period of time, but it’s a guaranteed way to work on your strength, especially in your arms and your core, and to make you more limber. Plus, the surefire boost to your self-confidence definitely doesn’t hurt.
You might not be ready to swing from one trapeze to the next right off the bat – or ever, which is totally fine – but giving this unique exercise form can be an excellent way to focus on your core and upper body if your usual fitness routine places more emphasis on cardio and lower-body conditioning. Plus, as you grow more and more in control of your body with each trapeze session, you’ll feel the benefits in multiple muscle groups simultaneously, including the expected core and arm muscles and the not-so-expected lower back and inner thighs.
Zumba is still going strong as one of the most popular group fitness trends, but that doesn’t mean that it can’t use a little innovation from time to time. Enter aqua Zumba, which is exactly what it sounds like: a version of the dance workout that takes place in the water. While you’re still getting all the fun and movement that comes with a usual Zumba class, aqua Zumba comes with the added benefit of being low impact as well as challenging your muscles in unique ways because of the water resistance.
You might think twerking makes more sense in a club than at the gym (well, it does) but the hip-thrusting dance move is just as much an exercise as it is a pop culture sensation. Because the move is performed rapidly, and with the legs in a firm squat position, it’s an amazing way to strengthen the muscles in your legs and core. Specifically, you’ll feel the burn – and see major results – in your obliques, quads, and glutes.
The only drawback of a good Zumba or general dance fitness class is that the ultimate goal of nailing the moves and conditioning your body is often hard to focus on when you’re fighting the urge to belt out the words to the jams you’re dancing to. That’s where cardioke, or cardio karaoke, comes in. The fitness trend is essentially a form of Zumba that incorporates a group sing-along into the exercise routine. This gives the workout an additional stamina-building component – holding a conversation while doing cardio is hard enough, let along singing – that takes the routine to another level.
Catching a few waves is a super fun way to fit a workout into your day, even if you don’t necessarily have waves to catch. The rise of indoor surfing makes it possible to reap all the benefits of the popular water sport – eg. major fat burn, balance, strong leg muscles, a killer core, and an overall strong, lean physique – without even having to leave the gym. And with most indoor surfing classes offering a range of class types, like yoga-inspired programs and high-intensity options, the trend offers a fresh workout option for everyone, regardless of their goals.
Now that you’ve spiced up your training regimen, it’s time to focus on your nutrition. Learn more about the customized solutions that WellPath provides.
About Tamara Rahoumi
Tamara Rahoumi is a writer on The Path Editorial Team. She is a graduate of Rutgers University and is currently pursuing a master’s degree in magazine journalism at NYU. Her passion for wellness always has her researching the latest fitness trends, experimenting with recipes from superfood cookbooks, and working towards an overall healthier and happier lifestyle. In addition to reading her articles on The Path, you can follow her adventures on her lifestyle blog, The Curly Nomad.