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Summer Fitness: Enjoyable Exercises Worth Trying Outside

No need to confine yourself to four walls. Get outside and enjoy the fresh air.

Arielle Burton Associate Content Manager
Arielle Burton is an associate content manager on CNET's Performance Optimization team. She graduated from Hofstra University in New York. Prior to joining CNET, she worked with legacy news (ABC7NY and Fox Business Network) and tech companies (Mashable). She specializes in crafting compelling alerts, building community engagement on news platforms, and optimizing CNET's content for all audiences. Ultimately, Arielle is a digital media professional by day and a fierce chef by night.
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Mercey Livingston CNET Contributor
Mercey Livingston is a health and wellness writer and certified Integrative Nutrition Health Coach. She's written about fitness and wellness for Well+Good, Women's Health, Business Insider, and Prevention.com among others. When not writing, she enjoys reading and trying out workout classes all over New York City.
Arielle Burton
Mercey Livingston
3 min read
a young fit couple enjoying an outdoor run
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Looking to take your exercise regimen from inside a stuffy gym or your home to the outside? Summer is the perfect opportunity to do just that. Fun in the sun gives you that dopamine you never knew you needed. However, when you're working out in hot temperatures, being hydrated and well-equipped are important for your safety.

Outdoor exercise is the perfect way to dodge the social anxiety of walking into a gym and feeling like all eyes are on you. Or if you just want to get your daily dose of vitamin D naturally, while getting in a good sweat, you have options. 

Ultimately, fitness can be the mental health booster you're looking for, and the extra health benefits of taking your workouts into the great outdoors make it all worthwhile.

Read more: 5 Facial Products to Protect Your Skin This Summer


Audio-based workout apps are a great option for outdoor workouts.

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Fitness apps you can use outside 

If you're heading outside to a park or to work out around your neighborhood, audio-based fitness apps are a great option. These fitness apps are different from most streaming apps since you don't have to watch anything -- like a screen or TV -- to do them. Fitness trainers coach you through workouts through your headphones. 

The only downside to these is if you are a visual person and need specific moves demonstrated to learn, but most apps will describe the moves to you so you can hear exactly what to do. 


Screenshot by Mercey Livingston/CNET

Aaptiv is an audio-based fitness app that features lots of different workouts that you can easily take outside -- although some are designed for treadmills or other equipment you can find at a gym. 

The classes range from yoga to running and strength training. Many of the strength training workouts require no equipment, so you can easily head outside to your yard or a park and not have to worry about taking things with you. 

Read more: Best Workout Subscription Apps for 2023: Apple Fitness Plus, Peloton, Daily Burn and More

Peloton Digital

Screenshot by Mercey Livingston/CNET

You know Peloton best for its popular smart spin bike, but the Peloton app offers a ton of workouts outside of spin classes. Many of the Peloton app workouts are visual, but they also offer outdoor audio-based running classes. 

Peloton is known for having great running coaches and classes (thanks to the Peloton Tread) but you don't have to have the Peloton treadmill, or any treadmill for that matter, to join in on the running workouts. The app also uses GPS integration to help you keep track of your guided runs. 

Nike Run Club


Nike Run Club takes mind over matter to another level. Whether you're self-motivated or are looking for that extra push, this free app personalizes your running journey with coaches, community and guided recordings. Former CNET editor Rick Broida explained it this way: 

"These recordings help you through runs that you really, really don't want to do by making you mentally dig deep while you push the pace.

Nike Run Club tracks your running progress and includes a space for sharing and meetups. Overall, Nike Run Club aims to inspire and encourage you to become the best version of yourself that you can be.

Free outdoor workouts

Whether you're on a beach or in your backyard, your outside workout routine doesn't have to be interrupted. From blogilates to dancing to high-intensity interval training, here are a couple of ideas to get in a free but effective and fun workout outside. All you need is your phone, tablet or laptop.

Outdoor Blogilates

Outdoor dance workout 

Outdoor HIIT workout

Outdoor bootcamp workout

15-minute HIIT workout

Curate your own outdoor workout

If you like to move to the beat of your own drum, here's a chance to create your own outdoor workout that inspires you. Whether you want to tap into a moderated activity on your Apple Watch or Fitbit, or a freestyle series of movements that suits you, then by all means explore that.

From kettlebell workouts to jumping rope or just doing your favorite stretches, the best part of creating your own workout is that you are in charge. You definitely have to be disciplined enough to push yourself when going this route, but sometimes it can be more rewarding because you get to push your own fitness threshold.

Regardless of what route you choose to take, outside workouts have health benefits and can be truly liberating. Ultimately, you may find an outdoor workout regimen that you truly love, but it all starts with one step at a time.

The information contained in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended as health or medical advice. Always consult a physician or other qualified health provider regarding any questions you may have about a medical condition or health objectives.