10 ways to get in shape outdoors this spring in Vancouver

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With spring upon us and sunny weather (hopefully) just around the corner, you’re probably thinking of ways to get back in shape. The holidays, combined with a long winter, weren’t kind to most of us.

Well, no more excuses. The sunnier, drier weather means it’s time to get outside and get your heart rate up.

Here are 10 ways to get in shape this spring in Vancouver.

Free outdoor yoga

Young woman doing yoga on coast of sea of beach

Image: Yoga / Shutterstock

It won’t cost you a thing and certified instructors donate their time to bring you yoga in Dude Chilling Park. Beginners are welcome – just bring a mat and a water bottle, and you’re set. The collective starts back up on May 1.

  • Where: Dude Chilling Park – 2390 Brunswick Street, Vancouver
  • When: Starts May 1, runs until fall, 7 days a week.

Run the seawall

A favourite and quintessentially Vancouver way to get back in shape has to be running the Stanley Park seawall. With majestic views and fresh, salty air, it can make those tough first few runs of the season (or your life) more tolerable.

Do the Grouse Grind

If you’re new to Vancouver, you should know this hike is not for beginners. With a total length of nearly three kilometres, an elevation gain of 853 metres, and over 2,800 stairs, you should be in decent shape already to tackle this beast. However, it can be seen as a goal to work up to, and if you’ve maintained some semblance of fitness over the winter, then go for it. The trail typically opens by mid-May.

Go kayaking

Feeling the ocean breeze, getting close to marine wildlife, working out your upper body – kayaking has it all. It’s surprisingly easy to master and gives you a great upper body and core workout while making you one with nature.

Join a bootcamp program

With various bootcamp options around the city, it’s a great way to get strong and fit in a relatively short amount of time. Bootcamps keep you moving through the duration of your time there, so you get maximum calorie burning workouts. Many of the programs, such as this one, are suited for all fitness levels, so if you’re worried about huffing and puffing your way through the course, you can put that fear to rest.

Ride your bike

Vancouver doesn’t have bike lanes for no reason. Biking to work every day will be a great boost to your fitness, and your legs will get toned. Even if commuting on your bike isn’t your thing, taking a leisurely ride around the city or on the seawall is exponentially better for you than remaining sedentary and it’s fun.

Go stand up paddle boarding

Not only is it a great social activity and a relaxing way to get out into the ocean, stand up paddle boarding is a great workout for your core. Additionally, your shoulders and arms are propelling you forward while your legs are constantly tensed to remain balanced. And who wouldn’t want to paddle board in English Bay? North Shore mountain views combined with the ocean makes for a blissful afternoon.

Join a sports team

With a never-ending list of teams to join in Vancouver, a competitive sport might be for you. From soccer and softball, to more low-impact activities like lawn bowling, there’s something for everyone in the city. Your local community centre is a great place to start to join a team.

Buy a jump rope

This is probably one of the cheapest and easiest ways to exercise on the list. Jumping rope can be done virtually anywhere and just requires a six by four foot area, as well as 10 inches of head space. Jumping rope, when done right, is lower impact than jogging and can burn calories effectively. As a bonus, you can usually find a jump rope at Winners for around five dollars.

Walk everywhere

Get on your trainers and put in your headphones, you’re walking everywhere. While transit or driving is convenient, walking is a great way to get in shape – making that bit of extra time to walk to your destination will add up in calories burned, plus it’s free and easy to do. No gym membership required here.

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Lauren Sundstrom Lauren is a Staff Writer and Projects Assistant at Vancity Buzz. She is a graduate of BCIT's Broadcast and Online Journalism program. She loves reporting on breaking news and lifestyle content. If you feel like you have a story that needs to be told, fire her a tweet.
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