Top 10 Fitness Activities in the United States
It seems like the health craze is here to stay. Everywhere you turn there are programs, diets, and fads, and even new pieces of equipment to keep us trim and toned. However, with all of the pomp and circumstance it seems we keep going back to our favorites. Following are 10 fitness activities we Americans can’t get enough of.
1. Walking. It’s common for many neighborhoods in America to gather with people after dinner to go for a walk. It’s a great digestive aid, and doesn’t cost any money. You can find walkers on lunch breaks and weekends too, because you can walk just about anywhere. No wonder we love it.
2. Jogging/running. Still wildly popular. There is something special about being outside, taking in a bit of nature or your surroundings while working up a sweat. Plus, there has to be a way to train for those marathons or 5Ks that credit unions are known for periodically sponsoring. The more you enjoy the great outdoors, the better your chances are of showing up having completed your training plan. Who knows, you might even place (gasp) and walk away with a medal?
3. Treadmill. A time-tested staple. However, in recent years the treadmill has taken on a life of its own. There are numerous program settings to help users mix it up, plus you can adjust the incline to make yourself sweat a bit more. Now we’re talking!
4. Bowling. Maybe you don’t think of this as a traditional fitness activity, yet it’s number four on the list, according to Personal Health Investment Today. It’s inexpensive, and a great way to burn calories as long as you don’t eat too much at the snack bar! No worries if you do. Just bowl a few extra games to get rid of them.
5. Free Weights. Versatile and fun, these have been around as long as Richard Simmons has kept us Sweating to the Oldies. Free weights offer great resistance training, and are some of the more self-explanatory pieces of fitness equipment available. Think about it. Most of us have a few dumbbells in our home, even though we may only use them for occasional doorstops now and then.
6. Bicycling. This can be a costly hobby, but once you begin, you are an addict for life. Road cycling yields a fantastic cardio workout, and all the gears available on the bike give you total control over how much resistance and power you have.
7. Gym memberships. This comes in at number seven, and for good reason. Millions of Americans love to sweat it out at the gym. The plethora of equipment and multiple classes offer many ways for us to stay in shape. It’s also a great way to meet people for encouragement and new training tips.
8. Stretching. This has increased in popularity since yoga has become a mainstay in American fitness. Stretching keeps muscles pliable and lowers the potential for injury during workout or daily use. It is a great way to relax, too, which is probably why many of us take a long stretch just before we crawl into bed at night.
9. Day hiking. If you find yourself near a national park of any kind with a trail map, pick it up and take a walk for a while. It’s a great way to experience nature, and one of the ways we love to keep ourselves healthy. The very terrain and adventure factor heightens this fitness experience. If you haven’t gone on a hike lately, grab your backpack and give it a try.
10. Swimming. Traditionally, we prefer to enjoy this activity at a pool of some sort, but many of us take the plunge in a local lake or dive into the ocean to play “fish” for a while in an effort to stay fit. It’s one of the best ways to enjoy the sun without the hassle, as long as you have plenty of sunscreen.
The next time you need to spice up your fitness routine a bit, give one of these activities a try. There are many activities on the list that are great for people who are pursuing a fit lifestyle, and several that work well for seasoned pros. It doesn’t matter what you choose, as long as you move. Staying active is the key. Not only will it keep your body fit, it will keep your mind sharp, too. Who couldn’t use a little extra mental focus the next time a new member walks in to sign up during the 3:00 p.m. blahs? So, if it's time to get moving, the cure is right here on this list.
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