One of the keys to staying on top of your fitness routine is staying on top of changing your fitness routine. While there’s nothing wrong with consistently going on a morning run or enjoying Sunday yoga, shaking things up every now and then can be the best way to keep you motivated and push your body in a totally different way than it’s used to. And when the goal is a fresh new workout, what could be fresher than taking your fitness routine to the water? Hitting the pool for your next sweat session – wait, do you still sweat if you’re in a pool? – is a great way to get yourself out of an exercise rut and workout in a totally new way. Here’s what to try when you’re ready to dive in.
High knees on dry land are grueling enough, but when you try performing the exercise with your body submerged in water, things get a lot more exhausting. While underwater high knees aren’t going to be super fast-paced like their out-of-water counterpart, the resistance that you’ll feel from pushing through the water will make your muscles work overtime.
Cross Country Skiing
This workout, which has you alternate your legs back and forth against the resistance of the water, is a great way to work your muscles while revving up your heart rate. The secret to making this a killer workout is going way into the deep-end of the pool until the water reaches your shoulder so that you can squeeze in an arm workout as you move each arm in the opposite direction of each leg.
This is a workout that utilizes short bursts of energy with each jump, making it ideal for getting your heart rate up and building your endurance. At the same time, every jump has you working to keep your balance, i.e. working your core, and pushing your legs against the water’s resistance, i.e. doing some hardcore lower-body toning.
This isn’t too different from out-of-water leg raises, but instead of lying down, you’ll perform them with your back leaned against the wall and your arms resting on the edges of the pool. As you work to keep your legs straight while raising them into a 45-degree angle, your core will be hard at work keeping your motions steady and your body in place as it tries to succumb to its natural buoyancy.
Egg Beater Kicks
You won’t be expected to whip out a series of egg beater kicks as flawlessly as the ones water polo players are known for, but as long as you’re doing some version of this water treading technique, you’ll see serious gains in muscle mass as well as cardio endurance.
As you jump up and down in the water, sinking your legs into a deep plie every time you land on the ground and pushing through the pose to propel yourself back up, you’re sure to feel the (oh-so-sweet) burn in your quads and glutes. Plus, the faster you perform the exercise, the more that burn will creep into the ever hard-to-target inner thighs.
You might still be of the belief that jumping jacks are little more than a warm up to the real workout, but when you’re doing them right, and often, they make for a pretty tough exercise on their own. Even more so when you take them underwater. Again, this is because the resistance that you push against each time you push out your legs or pull them back in helps work your muscles harder than usual. You’ll also get a little bit of core work in the mix as you try to keep your balance.
Now that you have your training under control, it’s time to think about nutrition. Learn more about the customized solutions that WellPath can offer you.
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.