As the San Diego Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon & Half Marathon pumps through the city on Sunday, I’m reminded that three years ago, I told myself that I would one day run the half. Three years later and still no registration complete, I’m beginning to think I may want to shoot for smaller goals. A charity walk, perhaps.
Kudos to those participating in one of the most vibrant San Diego races of the year. The extent of my cardio work this season was racing to the phone at record speed after receiving the press release announcing Aloe Blacc as the headliner in the finish-line concert. I needed to know if I could still see him perform his hit and my personal theme song, “The Man,” without breaking a sweat. The answer: We all can. The concert is open to anyone willing to brave the crowds at Petco Park at 10 a.m.
Anyways, this marathon coupled with the advent of summer means I’ve got outdoor fitness on my mind. In San Diego, there’s really no way around it. Your indoor gym pales in comparison to the endless activities under the sun.
Here are four outdoor exercises that we should all be doing more of around here.
Hiking: Ask my friends about our last hike through Mission Trails, and they’ll have no hesitation telling you what a whiney, grumpy protester I became just five minutes in. The thing is though, that once we reached the top of the mountain, I was okay. Happy, even. Hiking around San Diego comes with a decent amount of awe-inspiring views for the ultimate reward, from Cowles Mountain to Potato Chip Rock and Three Sister Falls. Plus, there’s always Torrey Pines for those days you’re aiming for easy. I’ll always love you, Torrey.
Stand-up paddle boarding: Three words: Killer core workout. I had my first SUP-ing experience last year in the Carlsbad Lagoon, which is code for “very calm, very easy water.” I still fell off my fall-proof board (in my defense, I was interviewing during the lesson), but the ab, arm and shoulder burn that I felt the next day put my basic Pilates class to shame.
Beach runs: If you’re going to run, it might as well be with a view of the big blue. Sorry, treadmill users of SD. I prefer the pavement path along Mission Beach, but many claim that running on loose sand is optimum for strengthening ankles and arches.
Snorkeling: I’ve been getting a little too much flak lately from friends finding my multiple sets of snorkels in my car. I’m a sucker for swimming in the ocean, and mermaid-ing around La Jolla Cove with the sea life gives me an excuse to do just that. Before one more person laughs at how fabulously ridiculous I look in goggles, let me just emphasize that I’m getting a noticeable workout while everyone else turns tomato-red laying on the beach.