The 6 Top Exercise Programs

Something practical that we have been trying hard to accomplish in preparation for our RTW trip is getting in shape. Staying fit is extremely important in anyone’s life, but especially if you are about to embark on a RTW trip that will most definitely push you physically.

We want to do a lot of physical activities on our adventure and walking is going to be a main aspect of our day. The great thing about living in one place for an entire month is that we can pick an area of town and walk it until we’re sick of it. Then we can move to the next area. We plan on being on our feet a lot. On top of that, we want to enjoy the countryside of the place that we’re visiting. We plan on doing athletic activities that will require us to be in great shape. We don’t want to miss a beat of anything because we aren’t fit enough! In fact, we’re really excited simply to have the freedom to spend our early mornings working out.

So here are 6 exercise programs that you can do individually or with a friend that will get you in some better shape. All are different approaches for different levels, but any of these can help you be successful. We personally like a blend of all of these because it keeps things fresh! We are looking at a 6-month training time frame:

1. All-around fitness programs (P90X, CrossFit, TaeBo, Insanity)

Let is be stated for the record that we still think that TaeBo is cool! We did TaeBo VHS tapes before we got married, and it did wonders for us. Yes…VHS in 2010.Mixing the video up with some cardio can really put the icing on the zero-calorie cake. Just make sure to start with the beginning and not the advanced workouts.

These are all what we would call “expensive programs” that will probably fade and be replaced by some other athletic dude or chick that puts their own mechanical twists to call it their own design. At the end of the day, all you need is to make sure that all parts of your body get a great workout. The price tag is (hopefully) only going to help you really appreciate the product you bought. These programs all do a great job incorporating everything, and most of all you can have a class atmosphere or do it at home alone (for most of them). The key is having a program and sticking to it.

Can’t afford it? TaeBo has different levels and videos posted on YouTube. There are hours of video you can stream to your TV or computer. No Excuses! Hard work! Dedication!

2. Swimming, Biking, or Running a Race. Or do all 3!

Don’t just do a 5k or the equivalent. It may seem like a lot to you if you’ve never trained or never done one, but it’s really not that far. Really shoot high for yourself. You can train to run a 5k in about a month even if you’ve never ran one before. Since we’re planning on 6 months of training, there’s no reason why you couldn’t pull off a half-marathon. That’s 24 weeks to train to run 13 miles. If you bump up a mile on your longest run every two weeks, you could run 12 miles by the race day and the last 1.1 miles of the race you would finish on adrenaline. There’s no one holding you back from it but you!

Swimming is going to give you a great full-body work out. It takes your whole body to have great form. Running and biking on the other hand are very leg-heavy. If you want strong legs, go for one of those, but if you’re looking to do a RTW trip, you can’t go wrong with just swimming. I’d take our advice, and do all three! Triathlon baby! You’ll never regret it.

Check out the Active website to find races coming up.

3. Boxing..the way Mike Tyson does

Boxing is a great outlet for your body, mind, and soul. It’s full-body, and you will shed pounds right off if you need to lose some weight! Between the jumping, arm moments, leg movements and ear biting, you should have quite a lot to build up to. On top of that, the footwork should start to train your mind to be able to think and move with good coordination. Boxing is great for preparing for another non-related activity, and that’s dancing (which we’ll discuss in another post).

4.  The Traditional Gym Thing

Yes, gyms are still successful for a reason. Most people have access to them, and you’d be surprised what kind of deals you can get if you sign up in a month that isn’t cold. Since it’s only “cold” in January or February here in South Florida, we would probably have to include “the Holidays” into that one. You’re pretty much good after Spring Break until Halloween. Many gyms can get you in for about 10 bucks a month. Don’t be afraid! Everyone is scared of something, but it’s how you persevere through it that makes all the difference.

Some of the better gyms offer classes which are super-convenient. Zumba and Yoga classes are awesome if you like a class atmosphere, and you can usually get your burn on and get out in an hour or so. At the same time, you can get some socializing in if you’re having to sacrifice your social life a bit to fit in the workout. Your new best friend and someone who may own a vacant 5,000 square foot home on a beach in Thailand could be waiting in your spinning class down the street. What are you waiting for?

There is nothing wrong with the traditional gym workout either. For us, we have found that if we don’t go to the gym with a friend that motivates us but has similar athletic abilities, we have a hard time getting a fulfilling and motivated work out.

5. Regular Sports

Why do kids play sports and adults stop when they graduate high school? Other than there not being many adult sports leagues that can adore a 32-year old running across a basketball court without dribbling, I’m not sure there are many leagues that don’t have a “higher level” of qualification  to play. Many sports can be played with yourself though. Sometimes you may just need to get out and stir yourself up. Go shoot some hoops, run around a soccer field, or take a partner and play tennis. Our personal favorite is racquetball because it can be played alone or with a partner, it is a major stress reliever, and the rules are very simple to learn. The hard part is finding a place to play racquetball these days. Since the 80s are over now, there are very few places today that you can still go, but it’s worth the drive if you can find one.

6. Walking

If all else fails, walk! Walking with a partner can create great moments in your relationship, and you’ll be surprised how quickly you’ll lose weight. We’ve realized, the more we walk, the more we dream! You obviously won’t be able to do activities that require a high amount of exertion in the future if you only walk, but walking can do one thing that the other activities don’t always accomplish: it can show you how to slow down and take in the world around you. If you can’t take in the things in your neighborhood and admire them now, you’ll never be able to truly admire the world that’s out there waiting for you.

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