Health & Wellness: Heat Up Your Workout

Washington Life’s tips for staying active in the summer heat.

By Halle Kaplan-Allen

Children of all ages can partake in the fun and fitness at Sandy Springs Adventure Park (Photo courtesy of Sandy Springs Adventure Park).

When it’s too hot to venture outside for a run, hike, or game of pick-up soccer, it seems like the only way to stay in shape is to hit the gym. But for fitness junkies who are tired of the same old treadmills and free weights, here are some creative ways to stay fit.

If you are determined to stay outside despite the climbing temperatures, Sandy Springs Adventure Park offers a way to stay active without getting overheated. Located at the Sandy Springs Friends School in Maryland, the park, which was designed by Swiss Alpine mountaineers, combines a series of wood and rope bridges and ziplines to create 13 courses of varying difficulty, including some that can accommodate children as young as 5 years old. Each session begins with a harness fitting, followed by a safety briefing and a short training lesson. Tickets, which give you access to all of the courses for a three-hour time period, range from $38 to $43 for children, and $48 for adults. The park also offers reduced rates for larger groups, but tickets must be reserved in advance. Bring snacks, picnic lunches and non-alcoholic beverages and head to the picnic pavilion, which has gas grills, a fire pit and a sand volleyball court. There are also a number of walking and hiking trails available to guests. This summer, the park is open seven days a week from 9 a.m. until 8 p.m.

Yogis take advantage of the hot weather to do bikram (Photo courtesy of Bikram Yoga DC).

Hot yoga, or bikram yoga, has become a fitness phenomenon in the Washington area. With multiple studios all over the city, there is no shortage of ways to join in the fun and stay fit. But with temperatures rising over 100 degrees, why not take advantage of the natural heat? Bikram Yoga Dupont is doing just that. Bikram is scheduled to host free weekly classes for the duration of the summer in Meridian Hill Park starting Sundays at 5:30 p.m. Athletic apparel store Lululemon is also hosting free al fresco yoga classes this summer. The store’s Logan Circle location will be holding classes in the center of Dupont Circle every Wednesday at 6:30 p.m. this summer. Check the company’s Facebook page for scheduling details.

Water aerobics are a great way to stay cool and fit during the summer.

Finally, one of the most popular summer activities is hitting the pool — it’s refreshing and affordable. Swimming can be an incredibly beneficial workout, combining endurance work, strength training and cardiovascular activity while working almost every muscle in the body. And the best part? You won’t even break a sweat. If splashing around or swimming laps isn’t intense enough for you, many Washington area pools are offering group water aerobics classes this summer. The William H. Rumsey Aquatic Center, located in the Eastern Market neighborhood, offers low-impact water aerobics classes every Monday, Wednesday and Friday morning at 8 a.m. and 9 a.m. The center also offers “Learn to Swim” classes for adults and children. Classes run through late August, with some continuing into mid-September.

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