Now that summer is finally here, I get to combine two of my favorite things: sunshine and a great workout. There’s nothing more energizing than starting my day with a sweat session al fresco — as long as I protect my skin with some healthy SPF and stay super hydrated. Here’s how to try my summer morning mood-lifting routine.
Before every outdoor workout, start a big glass of water and a generous application of your go-to sunscreen. Pick one that won’t irritate your skin and be careful not to apply too near your eyes (have you ever felt the sting of sweat mixed with sunscreen in your eyes? Ouch!) Bring the bottle with you to your workout spot so you can reapply as needed. Pro tip: Don’t forget to protect the backs of your hands. Squirt a small amount of sunscreen on the back of one hand and use the back of the other to wipe it in without getting your palms too slippery.
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Now you’re ready for your outdoor fitness blast. This simple routine is just over 11 minutes long and can be done pretty much anywhere, whether the park, the local track or a patch of grass outside your house. Always consult your doctor before beginning any new exercise regime, and know your limitations. Never compromise your safety.
1 minute: Jumping jacks. Take these at an easy warm-up pace.
2 minutes: Squats. Step your legs out so they’re as wide as your shoulders; squat down for 3 counts and back up for 1.
2 minutes: Jumping jacks. Pick them up to medium pace.
2 minutes: Bicycles. For this abdominal blast, lie on your back and crunch up with one elbow reaching toward the opposite knee, and reverse.
30 seconds: Push ups. Whether you’re in the traditional form or on your knees, take breaks if needed and watch out for your lower back. Keep the power in your chest, abs, biceps, deltoids and triceps.
3 minutes: Jumping jacks. Max speed — go! This is your cardio peak.
1 minute: Walk slowly to cool down.
Stacey Griffith is a senior master instructor at SoulCycle and the author of Two Turns From Zero. Stacey’s motivational coaching style combines a passion for dance, athleticism and mind-blowing music — all set to the beat of her voice. Follow her on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.