Carlsbad, California… ever heard of it? Located in San Diego County, the sunny spot was rated one of the 10 fittest cities in America in 2016 by the American College of Sports Medicine’s American Fitness Index.
No surprise, then, that it’s home to pro skateboarder Tony Hawk, pro surfer Taylor Knox and Olympic triathlete Michellie Jones. When you have great weather year round, access to the Pacific Ocean, a world-renowned well-being center, bike trails galore and lagoons to explore, you’re out of excuses not to shape up.
We understand that everyone’s not just gonna up and move there, though. So we asked a handful of local experts to share tips in their designated fields that you can use while doing these types of activities anywhere in the world. Read and learn!
1. Get out
“Use the outdoors as your gym. Here in Carlsbad we can train outside 365 days a year and why not be outside? I take many clients for our outdoor boot camp, and all they need are their bodies and possibly one exercise band. You can get a full-body workout without having to pay for a gym membership. We run stair repeats and do bodyweight training all around Carlsbad…. you give me stairs and a park bench and boom, you can have one of toughest workouts you’ve ever experienced.” —Marc McKellar, director of fitness for VeraVia luxury health/fitness retreat
2. Start small
“Life is full and wonderful—and sometimes yoga and meditation may have to be whittled down to a couple downward dogs and five deep breaths before hitting the hay. Even this has its benefits though. When I am introducing a new student to yoga and meditation, I ask them to set honest goals for their first month of practice. Maybe they want to practice every day, or maybe it’s three times per week, but again, it is all beneficial!” —Rebecca Kuritz, operations coordinator for The Chopra Center for Wellbeing
3. Zero in
“If you’re going to try yoga on a paddleboard, focus is of utmost importance. Some people try to overthink it. Get in the zone and focus. And just remember to have a good time!” —Austin Floren, manager of California Water Sports at Carlsbad Lagoon
4. Adjust and adapt
“If something doesn’t work for you and your level, modify it. Not every workout is right for everyone, but everything can be modified and change to fit your body’s needs.” —Wendy Sallin, director of fitness at Premier Fitness Camp at Omni Resorts La Costa
5. Just brew it
“Whenever and wherever I travel I make it a point to work out. One amazing workout that I created was when I was snowed in at my sister’s house in Lake Tahoe. I used a 12-pack of beer—which was about 12 to 15 pounds—for a total body workout. Shovel deck snow vigorously for one minute, then strength training with the 12-pack, doing things like bicep curls, shoulder press, triceps extensions. Then repeat hard shoveling. It was a great, fun HIIT workout with the beer as the reward!” —McKellar
6. Go with the flow
“If you want to get your heart rate up on a paddleboard, be repetitive doing lots of strokes really quickly. Unless you know what you’re doing, this is a better option than trying to paddle against the current.” —Floren
7. Find your happy place
“Meditation can happen anywhere and anytime. In my home, I have a small space set up for meditation, where I go in the morning after I wake and in the evening before bed. I have a meditation pillow made especially to help me stay comfortable for my practice, and a few personal items on a low table, which help me feel grounded and at peace. I have a singing bowl, some sage, a small statue of Ganesh and some beautiful stones from the Chopra Center. I encourage everyone to set up a little corner for meditation in his own home! Nothing is right or wrong for a meditation space. It’s completely your own.” —Kuritz
8. Work the body
“When you paddleboard, it’s important to engage the entire core for better balance and stability. When the waves are choppy, it’s even more important.” —Floren
9. Track your stats
“Use a tracking device during exercise. For example, try to trail run wearing a heart rate and GPS monitor. It’s fun to hike or run through trails and be outside with nature. Then, after one or two hours, you can come back to check out all the stats like max heart rate, pace, distance, and elevation gain from your monitor. It gives you a real sense of satisfaction when you see it all on a screen and motivates you to keep your days logged. This way you can look back on your week and say, “Wow, I actually did a lot of stuff.” —McKellar