Alongside eateries, many fitness studios are moving their businesses outside. Not limited to four walls and a ceiling, these wide open spaces allow for a pandemic-approved setting for some of our favorite group classes to resume in a new and safer environment. That said, with these new locales come some additional concerns that perhaps aren't as prevalent indoors. For this reason, keeping some extra fitness essentials on hand for your outdoor workouts can help keep you safe and your sessions effective.
Yes, while the outdoor fitness classes may feel familiar, the environment is much different than we're used to. For instance, now you're dealing with harmful UV rays, unstable or unpredictable terrain, uncontrollable external elements, and, of course, the ongoing risk of spreading COVID-19.
However, a few obvious and not-so-obvious essentials can help keep you safe and as energized as possible. Some no-brainer items would include sunscreen and a mask, of course. But then there are some slightly more unexpected picks like face wipes and vitamin C supplements. Either way, being prepared is key here, no matter what type of fitness class or session you've signed up for.
If you’re planning on taking an outdoor workout class, here are seven items you may want to pack.
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Essentials For Working Out Outdoors: A High Performance Mask
Look for a high-performance mask that's not only more breathable than a typical cotton or surgical mask, but will also help with sweat wicking to keep excess moisture from collecting around your mouth and nose. Because of the soft cotton on these types of masks, they feel lighter and less restrictive, even when you’re in your last rep. Many high-performance masks are also woven with UV-protecting fibers to help avoid getting a facial tan line.
Essentials For Working Out Outdoors: A Microfiber Towel
Most outdoor classes will purposely not provide towels as a means to prevent any cross contamination. When you’re looking for a towel to bring, consider one woven from microfiber. This variety in general is smaller and lighter than traditional cotton towels and have fast-drying capabilities. Since they are machine-washable, the microfiber weave helps them stay fresher longer than their cotton counterparts.
Essentials For Working Out Outdoors: Water Resistant, Sport SPF
Even though fall is in full swing, it’s imperative to continue to wear SPF all year round. Look for a water-resistant SPF specifically made for sporty activities, so if you get a little sweaty or if your mask rubs your face it doesn’t take your SPF with it.
Essentials For Working Out Outdoors: Shock Absorbing Mat
While many outdoor classes provide mats to designate spaces, don’t be afraid to bring your own. Look for a mat that’s shock absorbing, so that, if your workout space is inside a parking garage or on a hard concrete floor, your joints will be able to better bear the brunt of your work.
Essentials For Working Out Outdoors: Facial Wipes
One of the more unpleasant parts of outdoor workouts is the exposure to dirt and the lack of access to a washroom or shower. Being prepared with gentle cleansing wipes for your body and face is key. Look for wipes that are fragrance-free, to help avoid any skin irritation.
Essentials For Working Out Outdoors: Water Bottle With Built-In Filtration
It’s always important to stay hydrated pre- and post-workout, but depending on the setting of your outdoor classes, you may be limited to public water fountains. Look for a water bottle with a built-in filtration system, as they are more environmentally friendly than disposable water bottles, and you don’t have to be concerned when you need to go for a refill.
Essentials For Working Out Outdoors: Energy & Immune Boosting Vitamin C
Since you will be a bit more submerged into the elements during outdoor workout classes, why not give your immune system an extra boost of vitamin C? Not only will this help your body fight the approaching cold and flu season, but it also delivers a little pump of energy as well. Post-workout, you'll feel as strong on the inside as you do on the outside.